Remember when everyone was posting their Fall / Autumn TBR’s for Top Ten Tuesday? The one thing that was abundantly clear to me back then, was how Wildcard, Kingdom of Ash and Queen of Air and Darkness were overly present. And those are sequels. Other books? Girls of Paper and Fire, Sawkill Girls and What If It’s Us! All books that pretty much the entire YA book community is or was eagerly anticipating and kept shouting about in that day’s post.
Where am I going with this, you ask? Well. Seeing all those books over and over and over again had me feeling guilty. Guilty for not having read my ARC’s of Girls of Paper and Fire and Sawkill Girls. Guilty for not having pre-ordered What If It’s Us because I desperately wanted to read it but don’t want to break my book buying ban. And then I realized the book community has its own special kind of peer pressure. Because suddenly, I really, really felt the need to pick up those two ARC’s stat and maybe ask my boyfriend to pre-order What If It’s Us for me – changed my mind about that one since reading some reviews, but still.
That conclusion made me think even harder. It can’t be the only way the book community is subconsciously – or maybe even consciously – pressuring its members. Let’s take a look at some possible ways peer pressure might sneak into our bookish lives.
WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU HAVEN’T READ THAT BOOK YET
Seeing people talk about a certain book or series everywhere, realizing you own a finished copy or an ARC and immediately feeling you’re missing out on something huge is something I’ve dealt with a couple of times now. On one hand, it can encourage me to pick it up and motivate me to start reading but.. other times? Let’s just say I force myself to get caught up and enjoy it way less because of it. Both things are possible and you never know beforehand which road you’ll take.
Books I’ve had this with: The Raven Cycle, The Illuminae Files, Throne of Glass
ALL THE REVIEWS ON AN OLDER BOOK YOU HAVEN’T READ
This is one I’ve recently struggled with and actually talked about with certain people as well. Maybe it’s because the author has a new release coming up – or is it released already? – or maybe it’s simply a coincidence but.. somehow there are reviews on a certain book everywhere I look and.. I know I own the books. I just haven’t read them yet. They’re not really top priority either, but seeing all those reviews on an older release makes me a bit queasy. “Why is everyone reading those books all of a sudden?”, “Does this mean I should read them now as well?”, “Maybe it’s the perfect time to read them?”, “What if I get spoiled because everyone’s reading them now?!” are all questions I struggled with over the past couple of weeks. I haven’t succumbed yet simply because I want to decide for myself when to read them but.. the pressure is real.
The books I’m subtly talking about here: A Darker Shade of Magic-trilogy, The Book Thief
CHECK OUT ALL MY BOOKISH SWAG. WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON’T HAVE ANY?
And so my addiction to bookish candles and subscription boxes began. Okay, no. That’s not true. It all started by watching too many unboxings on Instagram, then seeing amazing shelves filled with bookish merch and realizing all my shelves had, was.. books.. Suddenly I wanted to change that and have them look more unique.
By now, my FairyLoot subscription isn’t about the merch anymore, but more about having a surprise for myself each month. I still buy candles once in a while, but I’ve stopped buying a certain box with teas and candles. I just couldn’t keep up with all the tea! But do we really need those things? Of course we don’t! Yet we still feel pressured to get some kind of bookish merch eventually.
My bookish merch weaknesses: Candles, mugs and funko pops
[By the way: am I the only one who rarely dares burning those candles?]
I GOT THIS BOOK ON PRE-ORDER AND THAT ONE AND THIS ONE TOO.
I didn’t even contemplate pre-ordering books before I became part of the book community. I’d simply buy the book when I’d see it at the store or order it should I somehow be reminded of its existence. I didn’t bother with pre-orders or keeping my eyes on release dates. Why should I? I’ll get around to it eventually. Right?
Not anymore. The first year of blogging, I pretty much knew release dates of my anticipated reads and sequels by heart – much to my own annoyance. I could easily tell you what book was going to be released on that specific day and whether or not it was a sequel. Sometimes even whether or not there’d be another installment?!
Luckily, I stopped doing that. I still know some vague release dates of sequels I’m eagerly awaiting, but that’s it. I try not to focus on those new releases anymore. Pre-orders though? They’re my downfall! Especially when it comes to sequels and authors I adore.
Books I have on pre-order right now: Queen of Air and Darkness, Kingdom of Ash, A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Children of Virtue and Vengeance and more..
[Kingdom of Ash is on here since it STILL HASN’T ARRIVED.]
WISH LIST? OH. HERE ARE ALL THE BOOKS I WANT. ONLY BOOKS. NOTHING ELSE.
It’s as if we can only think of books anymore after a while. Whether it’s a birthday coming up or Christmas, if we get an excuse to get our hands on more books? We simply take it with grabby hands and slam those bookish wish lists in anyone’s face. Want to gift us something other than books? Than it better has to do with reading! Or books! Just give me books. I don’t need anything else.
Yup, sound familiar? I’ve been there as well. It’s been hard trying not to do it simply because I buy all other things I want myself. I only restrict myself when it comes to buying books lately so.. wish lists still mainly consist of books. That’s going to change though, since I have more and more baby stuff I want to get my hands on as well, haha!
My wish list? Well.. Let’s just take a look at my Goodreads-TBR and go from there, why don’t we?
YOU READ THAT MANY BOOKS THIS MONTH? OOH; I NEED TO BEAT THAT!
For some funny reason, a lot of book worms tend to get competitive when it comes to numbers. Some people ask me for advice on reading more whenever I post a monthly wrap-up because they just don’t understand how I do it. And why do you set your yearly goal at 150?! That’s a crazy amount of books!
Well. Firstly: I don’t have a life. I live for books. I don’t have any hobbies outside of books and blogging – or does my boyfriend count as a hobby? – which pretty much helps my reading time expand by.. a lot. On top of that, quick reader! Once I’m lost in a story, there’s no way getting me out. I’ll continue whatever it takes, even if I have to multitask and do dishes while reading. Yup, did that a couple of times..
People forget reading is about having fun. It’s an escape from daily life. Don’t look at those numbers – even though it can be very tempting. It doesn’t matter how much you read, if only you enjoy and love what you read!
I LOVE THAT BOOK. THEY LOVE THAT BOOK. EVERYONE LOVES THAT BOOK.
AND YOU DON’T.
First: How dare you! How dare you have an opinion of your own! Now we will all come at you like fire-breathing dragons until you change your mind and agree with us on all the love this book deserves!
Yup. I’ve been there. Not liking a book the whole book community seems to love? A couple of times, actually. It’s no fun because you just know certain people are going to get on your case about not liking it, or maybe even hating it. I don’t get why. We all have our own opinions and.. just deal with it?
Books I had this with: The Raven Cycle, Looking for Alaska, History Is All You Left Me
Pretty sure this is one of my longest discussion posts / rants I’ve written to date but.. it had to be said? I couldn’t keep my mouth shut about this anymore and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one. So, tell me…
How do you feel about all these kinds of peer pressure in our bookish community?
Have you noticed any of these? Which one do you struggle with most?
Any other things you feel pressured on that I haven’t mentioned?