What makes you pick up a book? I’m fascinated by that question. I always have a long list of books in my bag – those that have been recommended to me – ‘you must read this …’, a list of favourite authors who keep me waiting for the next one in the series. Jo Nesbo made me wait a very long time for his latest Harry Hole- but, boy, was it worth the wait. School reading lists also get added – I’m working my way – slowly – through those nominated for the Carnegie this year.
But that is not all. When I enter a bookshop – armed with my lists – all too often I emerge with something entirely different. Covers captivate me. I picked up ‘Night Circus’ by Erin Morgentstern purely because of the striking cover – silhouettes on a black background. However the intricacy of the cover of ‘The Watchmaker of Filigree Street’ by Natasha Pulley attracted me for diffrent reasons and in both cases, the books did not disappoint.
For me, going into a bookshop is just like going into a cake shop.I know that the chocolate cake, the coffee cake, the lemon drizzle cake will be excellent – but there will always be that one individual cake that will catch the eye, make the mouth water and shout ‘eat me!’ In the same way, in a bookshop, there will always be that one book whose cover will catch the eye and scream ‘read me!’ And I will.