I read a lot of recent fiction. As I spend so much of my reading time reading prize lists, most of the titles I pick up were published this year or last year. I'll never manage to fill in all of the reading gaps and keep up with what's being published, but I launched a new initiative in November 2012: The Backlist Book Club. On the first of each month I announce the backlist title that received the most votes. I read it sometime during the month and post my review in the middle of the month. Also around the middle of the month, voting begins for next month's book. On the last day of the month, I host a discussion of the title with others who have read it. I invite you all to join me!
As someone who reads a lot, friends and family members ask me if I've read (insert name of famous literary success here). Often, the answer is no. How can I, someone who reads so much more than they do, not have read this great book they've read? The list of authors I want to read is ridiculously long (as is the one of authors whose work I've enjoyed and want to read more of). Typically when any of these authors publishes a new book, I start with it.
One of the perks of picking a backlist title is accessibility. These titles may already be on our shelves. These titles shouldn't have a long waiting list at the library. These titles should be easy (and cheap!) to pick up used. I love reading reviews of backlist titles. It's so easy to track down a copy quickly and dig right in.
What does backlist mean?
Backlist refers to the titles that have been published for several years. For the purposes of The Backlist Book Club, I'm loosely defining backlist as anything originally published from 1980 up to 5 years ago. I was born in 1980, and I want to focus on books published during my lifetime, but at least five years ago. I want to take time to read the books I meant to read in high school, college, and the early years after college, when reading wasn't a priority in my life.
How are the titles chosen?
In the middle of each month, I'll post a poll letting you, the blog readers, vote on which of the titles you'd most like to see the Backlist Book Club read in the next month. Whether you want to join in or simply see what others think of a book, you now have a chance to help pick our selections.
I'm in! What are you reading this month?
Thanks for your enthusiasm! You can vote for the July pick through June 30 at noon (Central time.) The July read will be announced on July 1.
Grab the button and share the news. Cheers to reading backlist titles together!
What have you already read?