Yesterday, I was tapped to do The Book Blogger Test by Jo Marjoribanks at Drifting Pages. Time to sharpen my trusty number two pencils and practice my scantron bubbling skills (it’s that kind of test, right?)! As I said in my previous post, if people ask, I shall answer.
What are your top three book pet hates?
- Books that glamorize abuse. I can thank the Twilight series for this one. I only started reading them because I was teaching adolescent girls who were obsessed with the books. Oh my goodness. The tumblr Reasoning with Vampires perfectly encapsulates everything I have to say about those relationships. I’m especially critical of stories that promote or glamorize teenage relational abuse (between friends or romantic partners) because I don’t see a lot of positive relational role models for teenagers in the media and yet the teen years is a critical time when people need to see models of what is healthy and normal and what is harmful and unacceptable (but I’ll get off my psychological soap box now).
- When writers don’t take full advantage of the world they created. This probably says more about me/ my own arrogance than the authors, but I get bummed when at the end of a book, I feel like I could’ve thought up a more satisfying and connected story. I first experienced this as a kid reading the Animorphs series. I loved the series but felt like the books didn’t always take full advantage of the universe/technology/characters that were presented. A more recent example (and I realize I’ll ruffle some feathers saying this) is the final Harry Potter book. JK Rowling set up such a wonderful universe and could’ve gone so many directions with the last book using ideas she had already introduced, but instead she throws in not one but two brand new ideas (horcruxes and the deathly hallows). And come on, in the words of A Very Potter Musical‘s Ron Weasley, “When you think about it, horcruxes are just kinda stupid.”
- When writers introduce chapters or sections of their stories with poems. Sometimes I do like this because when done right the poetry can prime a reader for what’s to come or create a certain mood. However, it seems like some use more credible writers to elevate their own writing, and the connections between the poems and the subsequent chapter are either weak or so blantantly obvious they’re uninspired. At the end of the day, no riding other people’s coattails!
Describe your perfect reading spot.
Outside where it’s sunny and where I can hear birds. The ocean is an acceptable bird substitute.
Tell us three book confessions.
- After joining Goodreads a few months ago, I discovered I haven’t read nearly as many classics as I probably should have for someone who loves to read.
- I have a habit of starting books before finishing others. At any given time, I have about five books that I’m reading.
- Going along with the above, I will occasionally forget to finish books. Luckily I’ve realized this, so now I’m going back to finish those books that I let fall to the wayside.
When was the last time you cried during a book?
I don’t think I ever have. I’m pretty thick-skinned. The book that most played with my emotions was Night by Elie Wiesel, but even that didn’t make me cry. Now, the book that caused me to have the most extreme reaction while reading was Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. A certain scene that shall not be named toward the end of the book definitely got a very loud ‘Holy shit!’ out of me in the middle of my otherwise quiet college dorm hall.
How many books are on your bedside table?
Since I’m currently living in a very small apartment, I don’t have a bedside table. If I had one, I’d probably be my Sherlock Holmes anthology because that’s what I’m currently working on.
What’s your favorite snack to eat while you’re reading?
I actually don’t eat while I read. I get too absorbed into the story to think about my level of hunger.
Name three books you would recommend to everyone.
- Night by Elie Wiesel
- The Life of Pi by Yann Martel
- On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin (I put this on here because I keep having discussions with people who claim to know what it’s about without actually having read it.)
Show us a picture of your favorite shelf on your bookcase.
In my tiny room, most of my shelf space is dedicated to storage, so my choice was between this one and the one containing my textbooks and reference books.
Write how much books mean to you in three words.
Books are sanity.
What is your biggest reading secret?
I am a big fan of The Hobbit and The Fellowship of the Ring, and not to be hipster but was so before they were cool (Rankin and Bass films all the way!). However, my secret is that, *deep breath*, I never finished reading The Two Towers. And never started The Return of the King.
Who I’m Tagging: