Hi ho! The other day I just happened to be laying next to Lovemuffin as I was trying to narrow down my next read. Because it was a late Friday afternoon and neither of us were currently doing anything (busy lives, us two), I asked,
"Hey! You want to decide what I read next?"
Shockingly, he said, "Okay!"
This turned into an elaborate discussion about how we were going to play this new, just made-up game, and it was finally determined that I was going to read him the titles, and he was supposed to pick the book.
But then he said I should let him pick the book based on the titles, THEN read the blurbs, and see if he changed his mind.
And I was like, "You are brilliant!"
So that's what we did. And he did, in fact, change his mind after hearing the blurbs!
I'll share what he ended up picking in a second, but first, some background:
Lovemuffin hates to read.
He is also a SLOW reader.
He hates to read.
Reading is no fun ever.
Did I mention he hates to read???
To me, this is what made it so much fun... getting the perspective from someone totally not into reading at all (and therefore, someone also quite unaware of what is currently popular, what's been negatively talked about on social media, et cetera).
1) I read four titles.
2) He chose a book for me to read based on the title.
3) I then read the blurbs to all four books.
4) He changed his mind, and chose a totally different book.
So. Are you curious which book he chose based on the title?
Here were the four options. Keep in mind that I didn't let him see any covers; this was solely based on hearing about them. But, for the purposes of this post, I do have to show the covers, because, hello.
After reading only the titles, Lovemuffin chose...
THE LIE TREE.
THEN I read the blurbs (in this very order, actually):
Natalie Cleary must risk her future and leap blindly into a vast unknown for the chance to build a new world with the boy she loves.
Natalie’s last summer in her small Kentucky hometown is off to a magical start... until she starts seeing the “wrong things.” They’re just momentary glimpses at first—her front door is red instead of its usual green, there’s a pre-school where the garden store should be. But then her whole town disappears for hours, fading away into rolling hills and grazing buffalo, and Nat knows something isn’t right.
That’s when she gets a visit from the kind but mysterious apparition she calls “Grandmother,” who tells her: “You have three months to save him.” The next night, under the stadium lights of the high school football field, she meets a beautiful boy named Beau, and it’s as if time just stops and nothing exists. Nothing, except Natalie and Beau.
Emily Henry’s stunning debut novel is Friday Night Lights meets The Time Traveler’s Wife, and perfectly captures those bittersweet months after high school, when we dream not only of the future, but of all the roads and paths we’ve left untaken.
Publish date: January 16, 2016 | Add to Goodreads
Everyone knows the legends about the cursed girl--Isabel, the one the señoras whisper about. They say she has green skin and grass for hair, and she feeds on the poisonous plants that fill her family’s Caribbean island garden. Some say she can grant wishes; some say her touch can kill.
Seventeen-year-old Lucas lives on the mainland most of the year but spends summers with his hotel-developer father in Puerto Rico. He’s grown up hearing stories about the cursed girl, and he wants to believe in Isabel and her magic. When letters from Isabel begin mysteriously appearing in his room the same day his new girlfriend disappears, Lucas turns to Isabel for answers--and finds himself lured into her strange and enchanted world. But time is running out for the girl filled with poison, and the more entangled Lucas becomes with Isabel, the less certain he is of escaping with his own life.
Publish date: April 12, 2016 | Add to Goodreads
With her mother facing prison time for a violent political protest, seventeen-year-old Liberty Briscoe has no choice but to leave her Washington, DC, apartment and take a bus to Ebbottsville, Kentucky, to live with her granny. There she can finish high school and put some distance between herself and her mother-- her 'former' mother, as she calls her. But Ebbottsville isn't the same as Liberty remembers, and it's not just because the top of Tanner's Peak has been blown away to mine for coal. Half the county is out of work, an awful lot of people in town seem to be sick, and the tap water is bright orange--the same water that officials claim is safe to drink. When Granny's lingering cold turns out to be something much worse, Liberty is convinced the mine is to blame, and starts an investigation that quickly plunges her into a world of secrets, lies, threats, and danger. Liberty isn't deterred by any of it, but as all her searches turn into dead ends, she comes to a difficult decision: turn to violence like her former mother or give up her quest for good.
Publish date: April 1st, 2016 | Add to Goodreads
*The Lie Tree is a wonderfully evocative and atmospheric novel by Frances Hardinge, award-winning author of Cuckoo Song and Fly By Night.
Faith's father has been found dead under mysterious circumstances, and as she is searching through his belongings for clues she discovers a strange tree. The tree only grows healthy and bears fruit if you whisper a lie to it. The fruit of the tree, when eaten, will deliver a hidden truth to the person who consumes it. The bigger the lie, the more people who believe it, the bigger the truth that is uncovered.
The girl realizes that she is good at lying and that the tree might hold the key to her father's murder, so she begins to spread untruths far and wide across her small island community. But as her tales spiral out of control, she discovers that where lies seduce, truths shatter . . .
Publish date: April 19th, 2016 | Add to Goodreads
Here's what he chose after HEARING the blurbs:
Are you surprised? I was! I never would have thought he'd pick this one! (Oh, and he thought the cover didn't do it justice!***)
So... how about you? What title would you have chosen? How 'bout after hearing the blurb?
*Come to find out, I accidentally read the WRONG blurb version of THE LIE TREE to Lovemuffin! Whoops. It was published abroad last year, and is going to be released in April here in the US. The blurbs are so different that I think he still may have chosen THE LIE TREE if he had heard the right one! *hangs head* (If you'd like to read the actual US one, go here. I'd love to hear which blurb you prefer!)
**I'm totally making this a feature now! Hee!
***Spider warning: the spider on the cover of AFaSP might look cute, but the black and white version on the inside was NOT OKAY