A few years ago, back when a librarian needed to check out your books for you, the older red-haired librarian at the desk (Anna would know her name) said “My, you have a wide set of topics here.” I don’t remember what I was checking out, but I do read across a fairly wide swath. Science fiction, fiction, mystery, a variety of science, biography, history, philosophy, fantasy, kid lit, thrillers. About the only thing I don’t read is romance if I can help it.
It was about that time that I started keeping track of how I got the idea to read a particular book. I have several categories for this – my book clubs, BookPage from the library, Writer’s Almanac, my various “lists” (English Monarchs, Presidents, Newbury & Caldecott winners, etc.) and the Trail. By far the biggest category is O&A (Out & About), a catch-all for everything else.
I’m pretty good at remembering where I find a title that I want to read, but every now and then I am surprised when I go to my hold shelf in the library. I knew from looking at my online account that there was an InterLibrary Loan titled Meetings with Remarkable Trees waiting for me. It had the sound of poetry and many of the poetry books I look for end up coming from other libraries: I assumed it was poetry. So imagine my surprise it’s a lovely photo book with essays about specific trees. It’s fascinating but I’m not sure where the idea came from? It’s not exactly the kind of thing that you find in the mainstream.
So I’ve decided it must be something that was recommended to me on the Trail. It’s about nature, so it might be Clyde (he is usually my go-to for travel books, but it seems like something he might like). But it has absolutely lovely nature photos, so it might be the kind of thing recommended by Steve or Cynthia or BiR. It’s a little off the beaten path, which has Bill written all over it. The author is originally from Ireland, which means that it might have been recommended by PJ, who has a broader range of non-American authors. I’ve haven’t gone back to the Trail and done a search: for now it’s a nice little mystery.
Do you do well at taking advice? Or do you prefer to GIVE advice?