Cousin Sam commented yesterday. He still hasn’t deigned to comment on the Sommerer Family Website, but baby steps. In his honor, today’s post.
Ever since high school Sam, Brad and I read, more or less, the same books. This was useful because paperback books could cost as much as $1.95 each and we certainly couldn’t afford to spend that much on books as often as we would like.
Before high school, I don’t remember ever buying a book (except books to play games: D&D, Star Fleet Battles, Car Wars…). All the books came from the library. In Concordia Missouri I can’t remember ever going into the library. I can’t remember if there was a library. But there was a book store, and there were always 3 shelves of Science Fiction and Fantasy books there.
My recollection is that I mostly purchased Science Fiction and Brad mostly purchased Fantasy, but that we all read all of them. Brad was a little paranoid about his books, and we had to learn to read with the book open no more than 40 degrees, lest we break the spine.
But none of that is what I wanted to write about. I wanted to write about taste. It seemed like we all read and enjoyed the same books back then. Not so much anymore. We still like some of the same books, but just because one of us likes a book is no guarantee that the others will.
I’m assuming that everyone’s tastes change over time. I know mine have. Back then my favorite authors were Piers Anthony, Anne McCaffery and Robert Heinlein (actually, I think Piers Anthony was Brad’s, and by some obscure rule, we can not have the same favorite author at any given time). Now I think that most everything that Piers Anthony has written is only fit for teen age boys, that Anne McCaffery hasn’t written anything worth reading in 25 years and that Robert Heinlein is still The Man.
So, given that Brad and Sam’s taste in books have also changed, how can I tell which books to recommend/give/loan to them? Sam sent the Iron Druid series by Kevin Hearne back with us when we were in Missouri over Christmas. I was reading something else (I can’t remember what) at the time, and so Lauren read them before me. She had some LOL moments, and seemed to enjoy them. I just finished reading them today (and finishing the main quest line in Skyrim — thanks MLK).
I liked them. They were witty, the world the author created was interesting and (this is increasingly important to me) internally consistent. I’m glad I read them, but I don’t know if Sam thinks they are the best books he’s read in a long time, or just a good read. I would like to know the answer to this, but I would like to know it because I understand his taste in books – not because I had to ask him. I want to know this, so that I know what books to send back to him. I also want to know this about Brad for similar reasons.
If you’re having trouble coming up with a comment for this post, Favorite Author(s) and why would be legit.