Monday, October 10, 2016

Ten Great Books I've Read on Recommendations

I'm linking up with The Broke and the Bookish for another Top Ten Tuesday.

When you talk about books a lot, like I do, you get asked for recommendations a lot, and you get a lot of recommendations back. Because of my ever-growing to-read list, I filter most recommendations — that is, they go into my mental bank, and if I see them pop up several more times or multiple other people recommend them, I'll decide to add them to my list.

But sometimes books go right on my to-read list, either because they sound like something I'd like or because the recommendation is coming from someone I trust. Here are some books I've read based on a single person's recommendation (limited to one recommendation per person).

1. Cat's Eye by Margaret Atwood (recommended by 'Becca)
'Becca has been my blogging friend since back in the early days of my previous blog, and I trust her on just about everything from parenting advice to book recommendations. I added this book to my list on her recommendation, and after reading it I went back to read her thoughts on it and saw they were almost exactly the same as what I'd said in my review!

2. The Crossover by Kwame Alexander (recommended by Eli)
Eli graciously allows me to co-manage the Nerdfighteria Online Book Club with her, and she's a great book blogger/vlogger in her own right. Although we tend to have different tastes in books, we often have similar views on the books we read for book club, so I like getting recommendations from her that stretch my comfort zone, like this middle grade novel-in-verse.

3. Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino (recommended by Meryl)
I've had Calvino's If on a winter's night a traveler on my to-read list forever, but Meryl (a friend from college and fellow Nerdfighteria Online Book Club member) lauded this as one of her favorite books of all time, so I decided it would be my introduction to Calvino instead. It's probably not a book I would have picked up on my own, but I found it intriguing and imaginative.

4. The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh (recommended by Sara)
I didn't even remember that this favorite book of mine had originally come via recommendation from a friend until I was looking through Goodreads, but now I remember! Sara and I have very similar tastes in books and tells me she often looks to my blog and reviews for suggestions. Her recommendations to me are more sparing but always right on target!

5. The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins (recommended by Kirsti)
I know that I will never read as many books as Kirsti, who regularly exceeds 300 books a year, but I love reading her detailed and emphatic reviews and have gotten quite a few recommendations from her. This mystery novel from the 1800s is probably my favorite of the bunch.

6. One Hundred Names by Cecelia Ahern (recommended by Molly)
When Molly lived on campus (and before I had a baby) we would occasionally take long walks and talk about family and books. This heartwarming Irish novel is not one I would have found on my own, but on her recommendation I picked up and enjoyed the excellent audiobook.

7. The Other Wes Moore by Wes Moore (recommended by Missy)
Missy's known me for so long that she can usually spot a book I'd like without too much trouble. In this case, I don't think she'd read the book yet when she asked me if I'd heard of it, but she said the author was coming to speak near her and she was planning to read it, so I did too.

8. Stolen by Lucy Christopher (recommended by Chelsea)
I love that my little sister is turning into a bookworm like me, and that she's old enough now for us to swap book recommendations. After she listed this on Goodreads as one of her favorite books, I added it to my to-read list, which prompted her to gift me a copy for Christmas. It ended up being way better than I expected!

9. The Unthinkable by Amanda Ripley (recommended by Fiona)
My friend and former coworker was involved in disaster preparedness planning when she worked on campus here, and after one meeting she came back with this book recommendation. I don't know if she ever got a chance to read it herself, but I was glad she pointed me to it!

10. With Burning Hearts by Henri Nouwen (recommended by Rachel)
Rachel and I have a lot of similar interests, and she's recommended tons of books to me, of which this is my favorite. It was the best book I read in July and possibly one of the best this year.

What are some good books you picked up on a recommendation?

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