Personal, Reviews

Book Q & A

Book Q&A Rules

1. Post these rules
2. Post a photo of your favourite book cover
3. Answer the questions below
4. Tag a few people to answer them too
5. Go to their blog/twitter and tell them you’ve tagged them
6. Make sure you tell the person who tagged you that you’ve taken part!

This meme is brought to you today by Annabel. It’s completion is due to the extra time I have from taking a half day at work (dentist appointment) AND because I’m in a great mood. Tonight I am going to see Bob Dylan (and Wilco). I’ve already see Arlo Guthrie this summer (in lieu of Woody Guthrie, for obvious reasons), if I could somehow manage to see Leonard Cohen I would be able to cross off the musicians section of my life list. The latter is not happening this year. Now for the actual book portion of today’s post (sorry, my excitement over Bob Dylan is intense)…

Unsure about the favorite cover, there are too many:

teleportation device

What are you reading right now?

Personally:
Needful Things by Stephen King
The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty
The Rathbones by Janice Clark

Professionally:
Basin and Range by John McPhee
State of Wonder by Ann Patchett

*It doesn’t bother me to read multiple books, especially if they are all very different.

Do you have any idea what you’ll read when you’re done with that?

The Sound of Things Falling by Juan Gabriel Vasquez
The Thicket by Joe R. Lansdale

What five books have you always wanted to read but haven’t got round to?

We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver. The subject matter is intense. Disturbing books typically only disturb me when they focus on children.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I still haven’t read it.

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell. It’s quite possible that I’ll always stick to the miniseries, but I have good intentions.

Hyperion by Dan Simmons (or Drood, for that matter). No excuses, I just haven’t.

Insert any book that I’ve said ‘I’ve been meaning to read that…’, there are a lot of them.

What magazines do you have in your bathroom/ lounge right now?

I typically have design magazines scattered around the house. I usually have the latest Colorado Homes and I typically hoard back issues of West Elm. You, lucky readers, will learn more about my home renovation soon. You know you want to know.

What’s the worst book you’ve ever read?

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown and 50 Shades of Grey by E. L. James. Yep, I read them both. I’m still astounded that they both have sequels (and more).

What book seemed really popular but you didn’t like?

The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes. It won the Booker and lots of people I knew loved it but it didn’t work for me.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Yeah, yeah, everyone loved it. Except me. Anyone else not like it?

Also, while I thought the Harry Potter series was well-written and engrossing, it didn’t make much of an impression on me.

What’s the one book you always recommend to just about everyone?

There isn’t one book. If someone ask me what they should read, I usually start by asking what other books they’ve enjoyed. That being said, I think Empire Falls by Richard Russo has universal appeal.

What are your three favourite poems?

Daddy by Sylvia Plath
Ulysses by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
Craigo Woods by Violet Jacob

Where do you usually get your books?

Mostly from the library or publishers. I frequent used books sales as well, which is hell on my book buying ban.

When you were little, did you have any particular reading habits?

No, just reading all the time.

What’s the last thing you stayed up half the night reading because it was too good to put down?

I don’t know, I am a night owl by nature so I am usually up late reading. If I am in bed by 1am, it is a good day.

Have you ever “faked” reading a book?

Moby-Dick. I skimmed more than I care to admit.

Have you ever bought a book just because you liked the cover?

The Stranger by Albert Camus (the black and white cover, if not for that cover I would not feel the need to own any Camus)

What was your favourite book when you were a child?

The classic Nancy Drew books.

What book changed your life?

White Oleander by Janet Fitch. I can’t explain how important this novel is to me.

What is your favourite passage from a book?

From The Painted Veil by W. Somerset Maugham (I can’t believe I only mentioned Maugham once on this list, because The Razor’s Edge surely needs a mention too):

‘I had no illusions about you,’ he said. ‘I knew you were silly and frivolous and empty-headed. But I loved you. I knew that your aims and ideals were vulgar and commonplace. But I loved you. I knew that you were second-rate. But I loved you. It’s comic when I think how hard I tried to be amused by the things that amused you and how anxious I was to hide from you that I wasn’t ignorant and vulgar and scandal-mongering and stupid. I knew how frightened you were of intelligence and I did everything I could to make you think me as big a fool as the rest of the men you knew. I knew that you’d only married me for convenience. I loved you so much, I didn’t care. Most people, as far as I can see, when they’re in love with someone and the love isn’t returned feel that they have a grievance. They grow angry and bitter. I wasn’t like that. I never expected you to love me, I didn’t see any reason that you should. I never thought myself very lovable. I was thankful to be allowed to love you and I was enraptured when now and then I thought you were pleased with me or when I noticed in your eyes a gleam of good-humored affection. I tried not to bore you with my love; I knew I couldn’t afford to do that and I was always on the lookout for the first sign that you were impatient with my affection. What most husbands expect as a right I was prepared to receive as a favor.’

Who are your top five favourite authors?

John Irving
Richard Russo
Stephen King
Donald Ray Pollack
Joe Hill

And so many more.

What book has no one heard about but should read?

Green Shadows, White Whale by Ray Bradbury

What books are you an ‘evangelist’ for?

I liked Annabel’s answer: ‘Depending on the audience, every book on this list.”

However, I have heavily pushed Jane Eyre, Empire Falls, Tell the Wolves I’m Home, Bag of Bones, The Devil All the Time, and NOS4A2.

I’ve already shared this, but I used to be (and still am) a huge fan of The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. I made any guy interested in dating me read it. To this day, I’m still shocked anyone ever bothered.

What are your favourite books by a first time author?

*I’m changing this to include first time novels.

Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead

Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussman

Double Feature by Owen King

The Starboard Sea by Amber Dermont

Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt

What is your favourite classic book?

Without a doubt, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

Five other notable mentions?

The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt

Wool by Hugh Howey

Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy

Crimes in Southern Indiana by Frank Bill

Love All by Callie Wright

Thanks to Annabel Smith for tagging me in this meme. I’m tagging Julie, Christine, Lianne, and Lori. No pressure (if you’ve got the time, I personally completed this while waiting in the dentist’s office), but I would like to see your answers.

And for everyone else: see below. I’m a curious person by nature, so I really want to know.

Your turn: You don’t have to be tagged to take part in the meme. You can respond in the comments or on your own blog – just share the link in the comments – I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

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