Monthly Archives: August 2010

It’s been a while since I booked

It’s been a while since I Booked through Thursday and this was too tempting to resist.

(Side note: I used the new link helper in WordPress. Why it only found some books and not others, I don’t know. But there you have it.)

1. Favorite childhood book?

I’m not sure how to define “childhood” re: reading. Do I answer The Lonely Doll? The Secret Seven? Trixie Belden? The Chronicles of Narnia? Jane Eyre, which I (first) read when I was twelve or so. See? This list is endless.

2. What are you reading right now?

Insatiable by Meg Cabot (audio book in the car)

The Road Home by Ellen Emerson White (on the nightstand)

3. What books do you have on request at the library?

Many. Take a look:

  1. Beastly by Alex Flinn
  2. The Body at the Tower by Y. S. Lee
  3. A Curse Dark As Gold by Elizabeth Bunce
  4. The Duff by Kody  Keplinger
  5. Faithful Place by Tana French
  6. The good soldiers by David Finkel
  7. The Hunger Games Book 3 by Suzanne Collins (CAN. NOT. WAIT)
  8. Infinite Days by Rebecca  Maizel
  9. A kiss in time by Alex Flinn
  10. Matched by Allyson  Condie
  11. Nomansland by Lesley  Hauge
  12. The passage by Justin Cronin
  13. Plain Kate by Erin Bow
  14. Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
  15. Runaway by Meg Cabot
  16. The Summer We Read Gatsby by Danielle Ganek
  17. The talent code : [unlocking the secret of skill in sports, art, music, math, and just about anything] by Daniel Coyle
  18. The Things a Brother Knows by Dana Reinhardt
  19. War by Sebastian Junger

4. Bad book habit?

Buying and then not reading them, or at least not reading them for a very long time.

5. What do you currently have checked out at the library?

  1. Insatiable by Meg Cabot
  2. I am not a serial killer by Dan Wells
  3. The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
  4. Hotel On The Corner Of Bitter And Sweet by Jamie Ford
  5. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

6. Do you have an e-reader?

Yes, a Kindle.

7. Do you prefer to read one book at a time, or several at once?

I usually have two going at a time, one in the car and one for elsewhere.

8. Have your reading habits changed since starting a blog?

No, they’ve changed since I started writing. I read a little less (a girl needs time to write after all) and I read more carefully, not to mention slowly.

9. Least favorite book you read this year (so far?)

Probably one (or two/three) books I judged for the Rita. And because I judged them for the Rita, I can’t tell you what they are. (You’re consumed with curiosity, aren’t you?)

10. Favorite book you’ve read this year?

Do I have list just one? In no particular order:

  1. Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson
  2. What I Saw And How I Lied by Judy Blundell
  3. The Likeness by Tana French
  4. Saving Francesca by Melina Marchetta

11. How often do you read out of your comfort zone?

I try to do this on a regular basis. I think it’s good for a writer to do this.

12. What is your reading comfort zone?

Young Adult

13. Can you read on the bus?

Ack! No! Motion sickness! Motion sickness!

14. Favorite place to read?

Anywhere (relatively) quiet

15. What is your policy on book lending?

I give books away. If I need/want another copy, I’ll buy it.

16. Do you ever dog-ear books?

No, but I don’t have a breakdown when other people do.

17. Do you ever write in the margins of your books?

Text books/books for research I might.

18.  Not even with text books?

See above.

19. What is your favorite language to read in?

English, although I used to be able to read in German and Russian.

20. What makes you love a book?

A combination of things–compelling character(s), a story that won’t quit, and a theme that speaks to me.

21. What will inspire you to recommend a book?

Probably the above, in #20.

22. Favorite genre?

Young adult. Ha. A cheat, since you can get anything in YA these days.

23. Genre you rarely read (but wish you did?)

Historical nonfiction.

24. Favorite biography?

How about a memoir, which would have to be Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi.

25. Have you ever read a self-help book?

Yes, I tend toward those that promise to make me smarter or a better writer. It’s a never-ending quest, really.

26. Favorite cookbook?

Bwhahahaha. That’s all I’m going to say.

27. Most inspirational book you’ve read this year (fiction or non-fiction)?

Nonfiction: Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity was short and fun, with some good advice. I like a book with attitude. Outliers also had some interesting information. (See #25 where I’m trying to be smarter and a better writer.)

Fiction: See favorite books.

28. Favorite reading snack?

Tea.

29. Name a case in which hype ruined your reading experience.

Ruined? Maybe When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead, which I enjoyed very much and think it deserves all the awards it has received. But by the time I read it, I was expecting it to also clean my house and make me coffee in the morning.

30. How often do you agree with critics about a book?

Meh. Totally depends. Many times I wonder if we’ve read the same book.

31. How do you feel about giving bad/negative reviews?

I don’t. Give them, that is. I do read books that simply aren’t for me, since I try to read widely (I think that’s important as a writer.) And I do analyze why a book didn’t work for me, but I generally keep those conclusions to myself.

32. If you could read in a foreign language, which language would you chose?

I’d love to get back up to speed and read in Russian.

33. Most intimidating book you’ve ever read?

Anna Karenina–in Russian.

34. Most intimidating book you’re too nervous to begin?

All those big fat historical nonfiction books I have.

35. Favorite Poet?

Pushkin.

36. How many books do you usually have checked out of the library at any given time?

A handful.

37. How often have you returned book to the library unread?

For audio books if I cannot stand actor’s voice, I hit eject and back it goes. Commuting is bad enough. Commuting with someone whose voice grates on you? No thanks.

38. Favorite fictional character?

Elizabeth Bennet

39. Favorite fictional villain?

Um, I can’t think of one. Maybe because I tend to think villain = moustache-twirling bad guy, and I like books with antagonists who: 1) are often redeemed, 2) relatable and human, if tragically flawed.

40. Books I’m most likely to bring on vacation?

Whatever is next in the queue.

41. The longest I’ve gone without reading.

I don’t know. I’m drawing a blank on this one. Probably when I was deployed to the Gulf, during that window of time when things were happening. I don’t think I read then.

42. Name a book that you could/would not finish.

Le Divorce. I got bored. I actually put it down at the 3/4 mark, right before the murder. That’s how much I didn’t care.

43. What distracts you easily when you’re reading?

Kids’ TV programs. Oy.

44. Favorite film adaptation of a novel?

The A&E version of Pride and Prejudice. Really, how can you not love this:

On a related note, I also think that Bridget Jones’s Diary is a better movie than book (especially the last act, structure-wise).

45. Most disappointing film adaptation?

I’m sure there are many, but I often avoid movies made from books I love. My son would probably say The Lightning Thief.

46. The most money I’ve ever spent in the bookstore at one time?

A lot, especially around the holidays.

47. How often do you skim a book before reading it?

Not often. Plus, it’s really hard to skim an audio book.

48. What would cause you to stop reading a book half-way through?

Boredom.

49. Do you like to keep your books organized?

Since they’re not organized, I’m going with: no.

50. Do you prefer to keep books or give them away once you’ve read them?

I do have books that are keepers, but I also like giving them away, especially if someone really wants a book.

51. Are there any books you’ve been avoiding?

Like doubling back the way I came when I see them on the street … oh, wait. No. I don’t think I have. Except those exceptionally long historical nonfiction ones, that is.

52. Name a book that made you angry.

The Dark Side by Jane Mayer (Actually, I think this was an excellent book, it’s the subject matter that made me angry.)

53. A book you didn’t expect to like but did?

The Adoration of Jenna Fox. Interestingly enough, this one wasn’t working for me until the last fourth or so. I’m glad I listened to this one on audio, otherwise I might not have hung in there with it, but I’m glad I did.

54. A book that you expected to like but didn’t?

The last in a YA trilogy I was reading. I really wanted to like it, but it felt off to me from the first chapters. I finally hit eject and went to read a spoiler-y review and realized I’d figured everything (pretty much) without having to read the last book. Sigh.

55. Favorite guilt-free, pleasure reading?

YA and now middle grade. I’ve been reading a lot in the Aladdin imprint of Simon and Schuster (market research). These are sweet, fun, fast-paced books and I’ve really enjoyed them.

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Filed under Books, Memes, Reading & Writing, Video, Writing, YA

It was an epic kind of week

This week around the web, in case you missed it:

Over at The Epic Rat, which is an epic name for a blog, comes this epic review of The Geek Girl’s Guide to Cheerleading. I think this may actually be one of my favorite reviews of all time. I’m still grinning about it.

And speaking of epic, this is a pretty epic visual poem, presented by Radiolab and NPR:

All you Nerd Fighters have probably seen this one already, but I have to post because it’s, you know, epic. John Green on Looking for Alaska at My High School:

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Nerd news

Around the web this week, in case you missed it:

Great blog post by literary agent Nathan Bransford on the television show Lost and the High Narrative Price of WTF. And if that title doesn’t tempt you, I don’t know what will. Good message for writers–good message for all of us.

In Nerd News: Remember Windows 3.1? Or maybe you’ve never even seen Windows 3.1 (!). Why not take a stroll down virtual memory lane with the Windows 3.1 online emulator. Prepare yourself for a visual shock, and while you’re there, you can even play Mine Sweeper. (Go on, click through. You know you want to.)

And what post would be complete without a YouTube video. From the fine, fine people who brought us Do You Wanna Date My Avator comes this new music video:

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Filed under Misc, music, Video

All Right, Stop. Collaborate and Listen

Around the web this week, in case you missed it:

Have you ever wondered what the sparkly Edward Cullen did before he met his Bella Swan? Of course you have. And have you wondered, in particular, what he was doing during the 1980s? Certainly, as he is +100 years old, the dude was around, right?

Over at QUERYPOLITAN, they may have stumbled upon the answer. In fact, I think their proof is indisputable. Have a read (and for those of you of a certain age, I apologize in advance for the ear worm that has plagued me ever since reading this entry).

And from SlushPile Hell, which is the literary equivalent of Glamour’s “Fashion Don’ts,” we have the results of the Twitter contest: THE WORST SELF-HELP BOOK…EVER. Love self-help books? Love to hate them? Either way, you’ll love this post.

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Filed under Misc