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Insatiable Booksluts tells you what to read this summer


 Have you ever walked into an old, used bookstore, seen the endless piles and stacks of potential reads, panicked and run out? 

© Martine Poole - Insatiable Booksluts tells you what to read this summer
© Martine Poole
Those are times when a personal book genie
could come in handy. Susie Rodarme thought so too. In 2011, she and Rob Blake founded Insatiable Booksluts, an independent book blog that provides reviews, rants and information for avid readers everywhere. 
Their motto? “Voracious readers tell you if that book is going to suck.” 
Susie and Rob met in what Susie calls “a chat room dedicated to hoity-toity snobby booklust.”

That was in 2000. When the chatroom dissolved because of “Internet drama,” Susie and Rob remained friends, and, to serve the brains of mankind, decided to start a book club. This eventually became Insatiable Booksluts, which won award for Adult Fiction at the 2012 Independent Book Blogger Awards. In 2011, Amy Durant joined the team after meeting Susie via Twitter — who says the Internet kills friendships? 
In fact, social media plays a significant role in this story. Susie, Rob and Amy live in different parts of the United States, and rarely see each other. The first time they met in person was when they traveled to New York for BookExpo America, a trip they won as a prize from the Independent Book Blogger Awards. “The best parts were meeting people that I’d been blogging with (I met both Rob and Amy that weekend) and some of my blogging friends, like Lori from the Next Best Book Club and Tara from Book Sexy Review,” Susie said. 
Her other favorite parts of the trip?  “The MOMA, FAO Schwartz, and the Disco Fries at the Sidewalk Café in the East Village.”
According to Susie, the blog’s literary mission has refined itself over time. “As far as our reviews, we are trying to focus on small press books, primarily, because these books often get overlooked due to low advertising budgets; they’re also, frankly, often more interesting to me because they tend toward being less commercial (read: formulaic) than books from large publishers,” she said. “I like to help authors, which ultimately helps readers.”
The blog also features an opinion section, which includes "Reading Rage", a series written by Susie about her biggest book-related pet peeves. 
In a recent "Reading Rage", Susie lambasted author Elly Zupko, a self-published author, who wrote an open letter to book bloggers admonishing them for their refusal to review self-published books. As independent, self-published organizations, Zupko wrote, book bloggers should try and help independent, self-published authors. 
 I asked Susie the possibly ignorant question of what the difference was between a dependent and an independent book blogger. “I don’t think that’s an ignorant question at all, as I would actually think of a ‘dependent’ book blogger as more of a professional reviewer employed by a company. Independent bloggers, I would assume, are bloggers who have built and continue to run their own site.”
The site has one sponsor and makes a little money here and there, which Susie reinvests into the blog. “The site is close enough to being unprofitable that I’m not entirely sure what side of the line we’re on,” she said. “It could grow as the blog grows, I’ll just have to see.”

For existential book questions that range from how to pick out a book, to the top 5 books you should read this summer, see our Q & A with Susie.  

Anne Cohen


Anne Cohen
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