"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Monday, February 6, 2012

Juxtaposition

 Juxtaposition

Juxtaposition is defined as an instance of placing close together or side by side, for the purpose of comparison or contrast.

I can't help it. I find myself doing it all the time. If I read two books in close time proximity one often suffers due to its juxtaposition to the other.  That is what happened to the Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen. It is a good book with a strong message of the importance of family and not "going it alone." But the books suffers in comparison to other books I've recently completed, The Fault in Our Stars (John Green), and Why We Broke Up (Daniel Handler.) These books are so good, the characters so flushed out, the setting so realistic, and the writing so spectacular that almost any other book would not compare favorably.

So what is a book blogger to do? What do you do? Is there any way to avoid making comparisons between books when writing reviews? Or do comparisons actually help make the reviews more helpful? All three of the books that I mentioned above deal with teenagers in crisis, trying to make sense of their lives, and all of the teens show growth along the way. Though the stories are vastly different, they do have quite a bit in common, too. If you were to ask me which is my favorite, or if I would rank them 1-2-3, I could tell you easily.

Share your thoughts.



5 comments:

  1. I don't know why you would WANT to avoid comparisons. I think this adds a lot to a review, especially if I have read the book or books being compared. Keep it up!

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  2. I think comparisons can be helpful, after all, if a book doesn't stand up to a GREAT one you read recently, it's probably correct to judge it a bit more harshly.
    But, if you think a book is decent, perhaps it's best to have a "REREAD" pile for those books. I read so many different genres, a lot of times I'll read a "light" book right after reading a classic and of course it won't stand up to the same kind of scrutiny. But if it was a good story, I mentally tell myself to read it later, especially during a day where I'm looking for more of a light read.

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  3. I think you say how you feel about the books at the time you are reviewing them. Reading is such a subjective endeavor that people who read our reviews should know it's our opinion about the book. A book can get a stellar or less-than-stellar review depending on if it was the right (or wrong) book for us at the time we read it.

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  4. How weird is that--I just used the word juxtaposition in my last post. We don't have time to read EVERY book, so I like the chance to read the best of the best. I also look at the genre of YA lit it is; I'm a fan of some types, but not others. Comparisons are helpful.

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  5. I don't mind comparisons, and I agree with Helen about writing about how you feel in the moment.

    Though if I feel like books are beginning to run together, I try to switch genres. That usually helps.

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