Musing Mondays #10: BEST vs. FAVORITE books

Posted January 14, 2014 in Discussion, Musing Mondays / 1 Comment

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Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…
• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it! 
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!
My Musings:

Question: Are “best” and “favorite” the same thing? If someone asked you “What’s the best book you ever read?” would the answer be the same as for “What’s your favorite?
That’s a good question. No I do not believe they are the same thing. If you asked me right now what the best book I’ve ever read was, I might say Attrition by S.G. Night, if only for writing style alone, among other fantastic things. Or maybe The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. If you asked me for my favorites, well, I have a list of those handy on my Favorites Friday: All-Time Favorite Books post. Neither of the aforementioned books are on that list, but those are the ones that stuck out most to me in 2013. So basically, my opinions can change.
It also goes along with actual book quality. A book may be superbly written but about a topic not for me, so I would say it is a very good book, but not one of my favorites. It may even be one of the best books I’ve ever read, but not a favorite because it missed that one thing that makes it memorable as a favorite. All of the books on that list had that memorable factor.
So they are definitely not the same thing. However, it is kind of like the square-rectangle thing. A square is a rectangle but a rectangle is not a square. The books on my all-time favorites list are some of the best I’ve read. But some of the best I’ve read don’t necessarily have to be my favorites.
For instance, I might recommend a ‘best’ book to someone based on what the general population seems to like, and I agree to an extent, but I wouldn’t always recommend a personal favorite. So I would recommend The Book Thief before I recommended Graceling or one of those.
 
So what are your answers to this question? Let me know in the comments, or link up your MM post!
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