Let’s face it, we all dread it. It comes out of the blue, as soon as they realise you are a bookworm, and you just end up standing there and blasting a blatant lie under their expectant eyes.
Why lie tho? Are you ashamed of your favourite? Do you want to sound more educated for some reason? Naaaah! The reason is I can never bring myself to narrow it down!
What makes a favourite book anyway? or better: What makes THE favourite book? It’s the book that made you become a bookworm? The one that you can’t help but re-read? The one that elevated you the most? Your current obsession? The one where you saw most of yourself in the characters? The one where you want that exact fictional relationship to be yours in real life? Your most loved fictional world? The one with the perfect turn of events? The obscure favourite book in a series? Or simply that Book that will make them nod like they appreciate your culture but they actually have no clue what is it about?
I honestly have no answer for you.
For the longest time, especially during school, I used to answer that question with The Otranto Castle. It’s a pretty obscure book by Horace Walpole and it’s said to be the very first goth book. Altho I actually read that book and I did mildly enjoy it, I honestly can barely remember it! As answers go, alongside with the fact that at the time I was using a velvet mantel as a coat, it was pretty satisfying for the other part and it helped people get off my back. But again, why lie? For me it’s mainly the panic of having to choose and because, apparently, if it takes you more than 30 seconds to answer that question you are somewhat less of a reader and, obviously you have a favourite one, you just don’t want to tell them. Go figure.
Well let me tell you something, it’s bollocks. Anything every non-bookworms think of our reaction time and incapacitation to narrow it down it’s bollocks.
I have no clue what my favourite book is. I have books I love, I have Authors I sold my soul to, I have current book crushes, I have books that I’ve read and that stayed with me in the sweetest of the ways but I don’t have ” THE ONE”.
Maybe I’m broken, maybe I am a Libra and I just can’t decide, maybe I want my favourite book to come to me in full meet cute style, maybe I’m just not meant to have one!
I read far too many books per year to pick just one, I love far too many books during the year to fix them in a neatly graded list – believe me, my rating system is still a work in progress-. So what to do? How do I answer that fatidical question?
Well, Curvers ( Curvers? Do you like it? ) it depends. My method is this. If it’s a sociable question, given by someone who’s trying to flirt with me I tend to give them books that tell about what I’m looking for or with characters that have gone through what I have, Or with characters that resemble me way too closely. They don’t really want to know my favourite, they want to know a way of knowing me better and they need my answer to shed some light onto my character so… the Guernsey literary and potato peel pie society, Pride and Prejudice and lately the Flatshare are the right answers for them.
On the other hand, if it’s a friend, a random person online, a colleague or any non-potentially-romantic person in my life I just tell them my current book obsession. I just gush over it like if I was doing a sales pitch for Waterstones and Foyles combined and usually I end up forcing (?) them to buy that book too. ( In case you were wondering Marriage for one from Elle maise would be my current answer. GO BUY THAT BOOK, IT’S GOLD).
Would those two types of answers be considered a lie? Should I just say ” I don’t know” and deal with the unmissable ” oh how can you not? C’mon, choose one”? Nah.
I seriously love those books and the reason behind their question could be politeness as well as a desperate ( or maybe not that desperate) way of secretly asking for book recs. In any way, boosting my last book crush can never hurt no? So, yeah, that’s how I do it!
Now tell me, do you have a favourite book? And if not, how do you answer to this question?