Yes! Yes, they are!
Welp, glad we solved that, let’s pack it in folks, all done here. 😉
Just kidding. Obviously, I have a lot more to say about this topic.
As a book blogger we often have that FOMO feeling when it comes to books, especially if we’re active in the community and visit other blogs–a lot of us are talking about new titles coming out and what books are on the horizon and in turn it gets us hyped for those new books. We can get so caught up in new books that we just don’t have time to look at books that have been out for a while. Let’s face it–there’s not enough time in the world to read every book we want to read and some will always fall by the wayside even if we’re excited for them. Where’s that time turner when you need it?
One of my friends is fond of saying ‘books don’t have an expiration date’! Just because they’re ‘older’ (quotes because anything more than a decade in the past can feel positively ancient in the blogging realm sometimes) doesn’t mean they’re not still good reads! So, is it worth setting aside some time for reading older titles? In my opinion, absolutely, but I can see arguments being made for wanting to devote the bulk of your time to newer titles.
But let’s concentrate on why we might want to dive into the back list since that’s what this post is all about.
- Checking out the ‘classics’. Classics of any genre tend to be older titles. If you want to check out some of the books that help shape the genre you’re going to want to check out some older books. Speaking of…
- Exploring the history of the genre. I recently read the Vicki Nelson series by Tanya Huff for the first time and it was really interesting to see what she was doing to help shape the urban fantasy genre into what it is today. I think her books and her contribution to it is just as important as later authors in the genre. I always credited LKH with much because those early Anita Blake books were an influence on authors like Jim Butcher, but Huff’s books are a blueprint as any for the genre and they came out a couple of years before Guilty Pleasures.
- You found an author you like and want to read more of their work. Martha Wells has skyrocketed to popularity with Murderbot being such a hit. But did you know she has other works out there? She has a lot of work! We should check it out! In fact, because Murderbot is so popular some of her older titles are being republished. Hopefully new readers will discover them.
- Maybe it’s actually cool to read things that not everyone is talking about right now. I mean….just sayin. 😉 Nah, you’re cool either way if you’re talking about books! But. I think it’s fun to buck the trend a bit.
- There’s a lot of great books out there we’re totally missing! I’ve found so many great reads by checking out older titles, some of them have went on my favorites list. One example is Doris Egan’s Ivory series, which I’ve mentioned before a while back because I love it so much–such a fun science fantasy series. (Note to self: convince more people to read Ivory.)
Sure, reading older titles might not come with the ‘perks’ that reading new titles do such as ARCs and blog tours and author interviews. But I think it comes with its own rewards. I enjoy shining a light on books no matter if they’re old or new–if it’s a good book I want to talk about it and convince other people to read it. And sometimes things take off maybe you can help that author by getting them a few sales of an older title. Maybe it’s arrogant but I like to think that just talking about books I love is a help to authors in some small way. Do you like reading older titles? Do you think only new books are worth checking out? Leave a note in the comments, I’d love to chat!