I came across an article showing a map of the most popular book set in each European country. Have you read your country’s #1?
You can check the article for the map, but for example in Finland the most popular book (as determined by Goodreads’ ratings) was The Summer Book. Alright, I admit. At first I had no idea what that was. When I checked and realized it’s one of Tove Jansson’s books, it made sense. But I haven’t read it.
Sweden’s most popular book is The Girl Who Played with Fire. Didn’t surprise me, but I haven’t read this book either.
In the UK, the most popular book was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Now there’s a book I’ve read!
But from there on… Nope. I do recognize some of the names and for the most part I can sort of see why a certain book has ranked number one in a certain country, but I haven’t read them.
I don’t know why I’ve avoided nearly all “big name” books. It’s not a conscious decision but I have been aware of it. I’m more used to picking up new books because those are the ones I usually see when I’m shopping. I know there’s a billion amazing old books I should read, but while I love reading, I have a limited amount of time for it. Especially since I started blogging and found a bunch of great writers publishing their own books, I’ve wanted to dedicate more reading time for their work.
To be fair, popularity lists like these are always opinions. Yes, they can tell what books are well liked and what are not, but they are still based on personal opinions. In this case the map is made based on one site, Goodreads. While I think it’s one of the best places to find out about a book, I know there’s tons of people who haven’t even heard of it. So, The Summer Book is basically the most popular book among the Finns who are on Goodreads. Does it reflect the whole country? To a point, I’d say. Jansson is popular and I can imagine this book reaching a wide audience. Maybe even me!
But I’d be interested in hearing from you! Check the map and tell me if you’ve read the most popular in your country.