Thursday, January 21, 2010

Books for Non-Readers

pleasure/reading Image by CarbonNYC

Lately I've been pressed repeatedly into buying bookish gifts or giving recommendations for books to people who don't read.  This got me wondering, how on earth do you pick out books for people who don't read?  Isn't that trying to sell lightbulbs to the Amish?  Here are two methods I usually employ:


Most people watch them.  If you know what kind of movies they like, you can make an educated guess about what sort of stories they might like to read.  Of course, this isn't fool-proof.  Case in point:  I generally hate romantic movies, but love love love romantic books. 

Some books also become movies.  There are a lot of film fanatics who only read books that have been made into movies.  Likewise, there are a lot of book fanatics who insist on reading a book before or after seeing its movie version.  I have never been one of these people.  I have, however, watched a movie and thought to myself, "Gee, this would make a great book!  Wish I was reading it right now."


Did you know the majority of books aren't novels?  I know; it amazed me too.  But apparently there's a whole army of people who read just for facts and not for pleasure!  How weird.  If the person you're shopping/rec'ing for has an interest, non-fiction might be the way to go.  But beware picking random books off the bookshelf!  While you might luck out and pick the best book evar, if it turns out to be a dud, you want a more plausible explanation than you just closed your eyes and reached your hand out.

Have you ever had to pick out a book for someone who wasn't a reader?  How did that work out?

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