Today we have a guest post on the blog written by a passionate reader who took her passion even further… she wrote a book and became a bookseller. So now, her life is surrounded by books, literally and metaphorically speaking. 🙂 I discovered her while reading “A bookseller’s diary” (Jurnal de librar), an article series she writes for Serial Readers and laughed to tears. I’m happy she agreed to write here too.
Presents are… special. They are particular ways of showing how much you care about someone and quite often they work as a test on your knowledge about those around you. You can either win or horribly fail, and this is because all this information we posses (or not?) about our friends may transform into an almighty trigger. And we always end up in front of it, eager to see the reaction. Even if we are talking about birthdays, anniversaries or just something to impress that cute girl on a third date, I think that books are the best way of letting someone know how important they are for you.
However, the first book you grab from the first shelf that you see when you enter a bookstore might not be the best idea. Anyway, it is all very subjective, so in theory you can pick whatever you want. In practice, I am a former bookseller who kindly gives you this piece of advice: avoid the following 5 books.
5. Fifty Shades trilogy
Unless it is your significant other we are talking about. And maybe not even then, because they might feel offended because of the content and the inevitable comparisons they might make between your plain relationship and the spicy things that go on in those books. They might get the wrong message. However, don’t give them to your inveterate family or to that single old lady across the street. It won’t make your Christmas any happier, trust me, because they will stare at you and probably judge you.
4. The Twilight books
Some years ago, it would have been a decent idea for a teenager with some interest in the amazing field of creatures with fangs. But nowadays these kind of books are literally everywhere (and some are so much better) and their main purpose – that of scaring and diving into mystery – is now completely missing.
3. First Step 2 Forever
You may not be aware of this – I hope – but Justin Bieber apparently wrote a book. A fucking book about… well, about himself. Yes, it is called an autobiography, but such literary terminology should not apply to whatever comes in print, but is no literature at all. Sorry guys, I hate this flaunty young man and I cannot help it. It is growing inside of me. Comparing Bieber and the diary of that young girl called Anne Frank, for instance. I don’t judge the book by its cover, I am instead judging its author, and that is some new level, you have to admit. It is my belief that you would offend a reader if you’d be giving them this. Just my opinion, you can go ahead and give it a try!
2. The Da Vinci Code
Okay, we must admit that this was also a great hit some years ago, but I think there is too much going on in the real world to be forced to read a mediocre book about secrets that affect us all and plot twists that are predictable. Also, this book is old enough to know that all people on this planet have already read it. Find a freaky encyclopedia instead and your lover might be a little bit more impressed.
1. The Bible
Unless we are talking about someone who is really, really close to you. If not, please do not involve religion into such mundane celebrations. Some might feel offended; some might decide (prematurely) that you might be a crazy religious devotee. Religion is personal, and I think that there is no excuse for deciding that this is the best present idea ever. Trust me, booksellers face this quite often: people coming in with a totally ”inadequate” book and begging us to take it back and give them something else instead, because ”it was a present from my neighbour, but I hate it, I am not even a catholic, please let me choose something else instead!”.
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