A Book Q&A

I stumbled upon this lovely blog here and saw this Q&A that originated here. Now I am really trying not to be all me, me, me (failed!) here on my blog, but I love reading and I just had to give this Q&A a go.

I think this Q&A is a great idea and such a good way of recommending your favourite books and a way of discovering new blogs. Click on the links of those who have been tagged – I always do! I have also manned up and swallowed down my Internet shyness and passed it on to Janet in return for the sunshine award she sent my way.

Its from the 60's, pink, kitsch and has Lemon Meringue! I love it!

The 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!

What are you reading right now?
Umm, I am currently “in between books” I have just recently finished The Hunger Games trilogy and a trashy Martina Cole crime novel my sister lent me that she and my Mum raved about. It was OK. As for The Hunger Games – yeah I jumped on the hype wagon, but they are so good  – no scrap that they are amazing!

Do you have any idea what you’ll read when you’re done with that?
I plan to read The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster next. But I may change my mind.

What 5 books have you always wanted to read but haven’t got round to?
These are all in my bookcase waiting for me.
Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
The Bell Jar – Sylvia plath
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell – Susanna Clarke
Easy Riders Raging Bulls – Peter Biskind
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time – Mark Haddon

What magazines do you have in your bathroom/lounge right now?
New, Closer, Grazia etc (I love a trashy celeb gossip mag). The Guardian Saturday magazine, and some old lady mags (sorry Mum!) that my Mum passes on to me like Prima, Women’s Own and Good Housekeeping etc. We have a little swap shop thing going on in my family.

What’s the worst book you’ve ever read?
The Secret Dreamworld Of A Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella. Still to this day I don’t really know what possessed me to buy and read this book. I think I was going through a bad time in my former job and just wanted something easy, lighthearted, mildly amusing and unchallenging to read during my breaks as an escape. I hated it, I was gritting my teeth throughout at the pure stupidity of the main character. I thought it would be a little “mental junkfood” a la Twilight et all. But reading it made just me hate the world even more. Funnily enough though I enjoyed watching the film. I am weird.

What book seems really popular but you actually hated?
See above. I do think that hate is a strong word though, I have read a lot of books that I have been “meh” about though. Like Wicked by Gregory Maguire that I recently gave up on half way through, also The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and White Teeth by Zadie Smith which I thought were a bit dull.

What’s the one book you always recommend to just about everyone?
This changes all the time. I guess at the moment it is The Hunger Games. I had to send my friend J a random text to tell her she must read it ASAP, which is the first time I have done something like that

What are your 3 favourite poems?
I am really uncultured and don’t read any poetry. Sorry.

Where do you usually get your books?
In this order – Amazon, charity shops, borrowed from family members, The Works then Waterstones. I wish I could say it was in the reverse order so I could support my local bookstore chain and help them from going under, but I don’t have a huge disposable income. In fact I go in to Waterstones to thumb through books then order them cheaper online. The shame of it! Maidstone has no local independent book store BTW!

Where do you usually read your books?
In bed, on the toilet, with a cup of tea. Not all at the same time I hasten to add.

When you were little, did you have any particular reading habits?
Oh I was such a bookworm when I was a kid. I used to read a book a day nearly until I reached secondary school, then sadly my reading habits slowed down due to homework and general teenage-ness.

What’s the last thing you stayed up half the night reading because it was so good you couldn’t put it down?
The Hunger Games trilogy. I bet you thought I would say that!

Have you ever “faked” reading a book?
No not my style. I never pretend to be anything I am not. I don’t care about impressing strangers. Perhaps that is why I will never get anywhere in life but hey ho!

Have you ever bought a book just because you liked the cover?
Doesn’t everyone? I love good design.

What was your favourite book when you were a child?
Hard question. There were so many books I loved, and *gulp* it was so long ago now I cant really remember a favourite. Books that stick in my head are The Wizard of Oz and Enid Blighton’s Famous Five, Secret Seven, Faraway Tree books and the BFG.

What book changed your life?
Another hard question. I have thought long and hard about this and I cant really say a book has changed my life. When I read a book I get completely caught up in the characters and plot but like Casanova I love ’em and leave ’em and move on quickly when I am done, and start looking for the next love conquest sorry book. Maybe I could say a book that my Mum used to help me learn how to read? That was life changing.

What is your favourite passage from a book?
As I said above I tend to move on quickly from books so not a lot sticks in my head, just the general plot and the feelings I had while reading them. One quote that sticks in my head is from Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts is something along the lines of “the larger a mans house the more empty he is inside”. Please, please if you have not already done so read this book to see how this makes sense to the story. It is why I am quite happy with my lot and never want a Mcmansion (Douglas Coupland-ism alert!). That book is amazing, please put it on you to read list.

What are your top five favourite authors?

  1. Margaret Attwood.
  2. Douglas Coupland.
  3. Haruki Murakami.
  4. Chuck Palahnuik.
  5. Marion Keyes. I know she is a chick-lit author and I will lose my street cred (ha yeah right) by saying this. Its for her consistency and her tackling of darker issues like addiction, depression and death. I enjoy her books and I don’t care who knows it. We all have guilty pleasures!

What book has no one heard about but should read?
What Was Lost by Catherine O’Flynn. A book for anyone who has worked in a retail job that they hate should read. Shout out to my fellow put upons – holla!

What 3 books are you an “evangelist” for?

  1. Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. Please make this into a film starring Johnny Depp Mr Hollywood producers. But please don’t ruin the story.
  2. Oryx and Crake by Margaret Attwood – This is how I think the future will be. It sickened, scared and thrilled me. This book really stuck with me, I even bored my friends down the pub about the future of food production. Read it.
  3. Girlfriend in a Coma by Douglas Coupland – Although I recently re-read this after 10+years and it did not have quiet the same impact on me. I think I had over hyped it in my head. Still it is another post-apocalyptic book that stayed in my mind.

What are your favourite books by a first-time author?
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Generation X by Douglas Coupland

What is your favourite classic book?

I wish I could answer this, this is once instant that I would consider “faking it” as I really want to say I have read all the Dicken’s, Austen, Bronte etc novels and believe me I have tried over the years. But because I have seen the films and I find the old fashioned English language writing style really hard to read I give up. See what I said – I have no culture! However I have read a lot of modern classics like Lord of The Flies, The Handmaids Tale and when I was younger I loved children’s classics like Wind in the Willows, The Water Babies, The Secret Garden, Heidi and The Little House on the Prairie books. I must see if I can liberate these books from my parents loft if they still have them up there to re-read.

5 other notable mentions?

  1. The Dirt – Motley Crue. Rubbish band, amazing book. I cried twice reading it.
  2. Valley of The Dolls -Jacqueline Susann. So good.
  3. Middlesex – Jeffrey Eugenides. Epic.
  4. We Need to Talk About Kevin – Lionel Shriver. Scary stuff, do not read if you are expecting a baby boy.
  5. His Dark Materials Trilogy – Phillip Pullman. Technically three books but three amazing books. Shame the film was so rubbish. I must re-read these.

In other book related news I joined Good Reads. Time will tell whether I use this regularly or its just another flash in the pan thing I feel obliged to join up to see what I am missing out on, then I will get bored of/be to lazy to bother with like Pinterest, Flickr etc. But if you feel sorry for me being Billy no mates on there you can friend me if you want to. Share some book love!

P.S sorry for the over use of the word amazing. I have a limited vocabulary. Here is a short video to show how I feel about these books.


5 thoughts on “A Book Q&A

  1. Thanks – I LOVE answering questions about books so I’m very happy to have a go. Love what you said about internet shyness too, I definitely have it.

      1. I look forward to reading your answers!
        – Yes its one of my faves. I could kick myself for donating it to the charity shop when I had a clear out before we moved!! x

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