Thursday, 4 August 2011

The Bookshelf

Now I want to talk about the book review segment I contribute to Yog Radio.

I started doing it because I thought it would be fun, which is probably the motivating factor behind most of the things I do. At that time Yog Radio didn't have many contributors, and those it did have only occasionally sent in stuff. I thought it shouldn't be difficult to produce regular content, particularly since Paul of Cthulhu preferred segments that were no more than six minutes long.

I decided on book recommendations because I'm a voracious reader. I always want to tell people about good books, particularly if they're horror or horror-related. I'm a huge fan of ghost stories, especially Jamesian ghoulishness, and whenever I get the chance I infest second hand shops and antiquarian stores looking for material. I personally find the older stories far more enjoyable than the ones written today, possibly because contemporary authors tend to explain too much and are addicted to gore. I don't mind bloodshed, but I'm not in this for the ketchup; I'm in it for the chills.

I see The Bookshelf as a series of recommendations, rather than reviews. I'd never talk about a book (or a series) I didn't like. There'd be no fun in that. However I acknowledge that my tastes don't suit everyone, which is why I always include a short list of negative points: the cons, to be weighed against the pros. Hopefully people find them useful.

I also tend to avoid talking about books other people recommend to me. I've had a few Yog Radio listeners try to persuade me to talk about their favorite novels, and while I don't mind doing it if I like the book, I'm always a little wary because there's every chance I might hate it. I don't want to upset a listener by ragging on an author or story that they love. That doesn't seem fun at all.  

So, that's what I do and why I do it. Next post, I'll be talking about an old favorite of mine: The Beetle

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