Edmonton Book Bloggers and I had a discussion regarding reading local authors. It was brought up by a local author that none of us listed an Edmonton author as a favourite in Kristilyn's EBB feature post.
Personally, I don't think this is fair. Bloggers aren't paid. We do it because we love it. It's my hobby and I don't feel obligated in the least to give preferential treatment to a local author. Authors should be recognized based on individual merit and I don't care if you're from Edmonton, New York or Kenya; if you write what I enjoy, you'll get a positive review and maybe even work your way into my list of favourites.
Most of my fellow EBBs agreed that this author was way out of line, but I'd love to hear what you think. Should bloggers feel obligated to make a special effort to connect with local authors? Does this apply more if you're a member of a location-based group (ie: Edmonton Book Bloggers)?
Also, in honour of this, I'd like to share a few local reads that I did enjoy (and half the time I didn't even know they were local until after I'd finished the book):
1. Exiled and Shift by M. R. Merrick
Matt Merrick is from my hometown of Red Deer, Alberta. We went to rival high schools at slightly different times, but it doesn't really get much more local than that. Plus, the Protector series is awesome in it's own right!
2. Gate to Kandrith by Nicole Luiken
I had no idea Nicole Luiken was from Edmonton until I was putting the finishing touches on my review of Gate to Kandrith and it was a lovely surprise.
3. Icefields by Thomas Wharton
I read this one for a university english class before I started blogging, but it was my second favourite book of the class and a very interesting read. I'm really looking forward to reading his YA work.
So, there are my favourite local reads. I'd love to hear your thoughts on reading local and maybe even who your favourite local authors are.