I´m a vivid booklover who loves to give other people book recommendations. I don´t force my favorite books on my friends, although I´d like to scream at them from time to time for not knowing who Jane Austen was, what she wrote and when she lived.
However, I´ve been realizing over the last few years that I hold the power to influence the reading habits of the people who surround me in my hands. I have a very dear friend who has always been very fond of books. We share a similar reading taste, exchange books and talk often about all the books we have our eyes on. When we were about 16 or 17 years old, I read my way through Austen´s and the Bronte sisters´ works. My friend “D” also started to build her collection of classics. We kept ourselves busy by reading our way through an enormous amount of modern literature, while the paths of our lives started to take on different directions. D became a very talented photographer with a sharp eye for details, while I went to university to study Japanese studies. Our paths crossed again a few years later and we´ve been inseparable every since. We meet at least once a week for some coffee and bookish talk. I must admit my to-be-read-pile of books doubled in height since D is back in my life. I read so many good books because of her great recommendations I´d probably have never picked up on my own. For my part, I am so happy to be the one who introduced Haruki Murakami to D. She borrowed my copy of Norwegian Wood, took tons of notes and ended up purchasing her own paperback copy of this literary masterpiece.
I have this other friend – who I shall call “T” – who doesn’t like books. He doesn´t hate them. T just simply isn´t interested in staring at printed pages – tablet, pc or smartphones screens are an entirely different situation though. He spaces out when I´m talking about the books I´m reading at the moment. A friend of his told him about a non-fiction book that features a whole bunch of sick people in it. T has a passion for true stories of other people´s sufferings. So he faced through the digital pages on his eReader with burning passion in his eyes which I never witnessed before. I asked him about the storyline. BIG MISTAKE! Dreams of cancer sick children and other tragedies are still haunting my nightly sleep.
Then there is my beloved boyfriend M. M is very ambitious – you could say he´s your typical Slytherin character. M studies medicine and economy and tries he´s hardest to score very high in both subjects. M used to read a lot when he had plenty of leisure time back in school. Nowadays, he seldom picks up some fiction because he spends already more time than he would prefer to with his books for university. When we finally made some time for a vacation on the beaches in Greek, M couldn´t be separated from the books he was reading hidden aways from the sun under his parasol. Sometimes, M tells me he envy´s me of my knowledge if it comes to books and authors. I think we complete each other very well, because my weak point are movies, series and actors – whereas those are M´s favorite subjects.
I think your influence on your friends is quite strong. Talk endlessly about books and they´ll probably pick up a book sooner or later. If you´re passionate about books, your friends will try to be nice and ask you about your favorite books and authors. Maybe they´ll ask you for some good bookish recommendations. If you manage to pick out the right piece of literature for them, their interest in books might awaken. And believe me when I say bonds between booklover´s can´t be broken – as long as you don´t spoil good parts of books your friends haven´t read yet…