January 31, 2008
Sometimes I find eccentric characters quirky and fun, other times I find them too unbelievable and annoying. What are some of the more outrageous characters you’ve read, and how do you feel about them?
I generally don't care for characters that have something odd about them just for the sake of something odd. On the other hand, I do like eccentricities and things that make a character seem real and different. I can't think of a particular character at the moment though. I guess Dumbledore (from Harry Potter) counts as an eccentric, and I LOVE him.
January 29, 2008
January 28, 2008
January 27, 2008
|Your Travel Personality Is: Easygoing|
When you travel, you're looking for a lot of downtime. Vacations are your chance to recoup.
All you need is a scenic spot and plenty of time on your hands. You'll figure out the rest.
You're not one to make lots of plans when you travel. You just follow whatever path seems right.
January 26, 2008
Which book do you irrationally cringe away from reading, despite seeing only positive reviews?
Water for Elephants comes to mind - I just can't bring myself to pick it u p. I've been burned too many times by lots of positive reviews that get my hopes up, I guess.
If you could bring three characters to life for a social event (afternoon tea, a night of clubbing, perhaps a world cruise), who would they be and what would the event be?
How about a nice dinner party, and I'll invite Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice (for lively conversation), Andrew Wiggin from Ender's Game (for deeper philosophy), and Harry Potter to protect us from the dark forces?
(Borrowing shamelessly from the Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde): you are told you can’t die until you read the most boring novel on the planet. While this immortality is great for awhile, eventually you realise it’s past time to die. Which book would you expect to get you a nice grave?
Anything recent by John Grisham.
Come on, we’ve all been there. Which book have you pretended, or at least hinted, that you’ve read, when in fact you’ve been nowhere near it?
The Odyssey - this was assigned for a college class, and I managed to not read it and still pass the exam.
As an addition to the last question, has there been a book that you really thought you had read, only to realise when you read a review about it/go to ‘reread’ it that you haven’t? Which book?
Wuthering Heights - I have this on my shelf, but I've never read it. Of course I know the story, so that makes me think I've read it.
You’re interviewing for the post of Official Book Advisor to some VIP (who’s not a big reader). What’s the first book you’d recommend and why? (if you feel like you’d have to know the person, go ahead of personalise the VIP)
This is tough - I think Harry Potter, because it's so accessible, and has a good message about heroism and family as well.
A good fairy comes and grants you one wish: you will have perfect reading comprehension in the foreign language of your choice. Which language do you go with?
Japanese, because I would like to someday go to Tokyo and be able to read the street signs.
A mischievous fairy comes and says that you must choose one book that you will reread once a year for the rest of your life (you can read other books as well). Which book would you pick?
Bellwether by Connie Willis - it never fails to amuse me.
I know that the book blogging community, and its various challenges, have pushed my reading borders. What’s one bookish thing you ‘discovered’ from book blogging (maybe a new genre, or author, or new appreciation for cover art-anything)?
I've discovered so many books from reading other people's blogs - my TBR pile is always getting taller! It's good to be part of a community that enjoys books.
That good fairy is back for one final visit. Now, she’s granting you your dream library! Describe it. Is everything leatherbound? Is it full of first edition hardcovers? Pristine trade paperbacks? Perhaps a few favourite authors have inscribed their works? Go ahead-let your imagination run free.
It would have shelves on every wall, and big comfy chairs to sit in, with lots of light from windows and lamps. It would still have my mix of nice hardcovers and regular paperbacks, but they would be arranged by genre, I think. And there would be a designated place for books that I didn't want to keep but were ready to pass along to someone else. And there would be lots of chairs for friends!
January 25, 2008
January 24, 2008
"What’s your favorite book that nobody else has heard of? You know, not Little Women or Huckleberry Finn, not the latest best-seller . . . whether they’ve read them or not, everybody “knows” those books. I’m talking about the best book that, when you tell people that you love it, they go, “Huh? Never heard of it?”
Most of my favorite books are unknown to people who don't read science fiction: "Bellwether" by Connie Willis and "Beggars in Spain" by Nancy Kress come to mind. I managed to get my sister to read Bellwether, even though she "doesn't like sci-fi."
In other news, this blog might now have been "outed" to my mother - I got a book in the mail today addressed to "Janiejane" (not my real name, of course) and she asked about it. I told her it was a name I used on the internets. So, if she googles the name and finds this: "Hi mom!"
January 23, 2008
January 22, 2008
|You Should Be a Politician|
Confident, assertive, and dedicated - you know what you want in life and how to get it.
Stubborn and opinionated, you can stand your ground... even if it's unpopular.
And while you have strong views, you never overwhelm people with your opinions.
A true charmer, you subtly influence people into seeing things your way.
You do best when you:
- Work according to your own rules
- Can change the world with what you do
You would also be a good lawyer or talk show host.
January 21, 2008
The author spent a year working at various retail-type jobs, and recorded his experiences. He worked at UPS, Starbucks, Gap, the Apple Store, and Enterprise Rent-A-Car. The behind-the-scenes aspect of this was interesting, but I was expecting more of a "Nickel and Dimed" approach. This is a journalistic account, rather than a sociological approach, but it was still interesting.
January 20, 2008
|Your Personality is Very Rare (INTJ)|
Your personality type is logical, uncompromising, independent, and nonconformist.
Only about 3% of all people have your personality, including 2% of all women and 4% of all men.
You are Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking, and Judging.
January 19, 2008
January 18, 2008
What is your favorite beverage?
Margaritas!! Coffee runs a close second, though.
Name 3 things that are on your computer desk at home or work.
My computer desk at home has a pencil holder (full of pens, pencils, a lint roller, and a letter opener), a CD holder, and a calculator. It used to have a cute little stuffed ladybug, but my nephew talked me out of it and it now resides at his house. How did he do that? "Auntie, I don't have a stuffed ladybug." "Would you like one?" "Yes, please." How could I resist?
If you could change the name of one city in the world, what would you rename it and why?
What stresses you out? What calms you down?
Stress: Having little or no control over the outcome of a situation.
January 17, 2008
How much do reviews (good and bad) affect your choice of reading? If you see a bad review of a book you wanted to read, do you still read it? If you see a good review of a book you’re sure you won’t like, do you change your mind and give the book a try?
I do like to read reviews, and sometimes I am influenced by them. If I read a good review, it does inspire me to put the book on my list of books to read (at least) or to pick up a copy at the first opportunity. I found "Ender's Game" by Orson Scott Card through a review in the campus newspaper. I probably would not have even given it a second glance otherwise. And I do sometimes decide not to read a book based on a review, although I do look carefully to see what it was the reviewer didn't like and decide if that is something that is important to me or not. I use that for movie reviews as well.
January 16, 2008
January 15, 2008
I have been contemplating the value of traveling alone, and I found this collection of essays while browsing around Amazon. Some of the essays are better than others, but overall this is a very inspiring collection of personal accounts of women's experiences while traveling alone. My grandmother was an adventurous traveler, and I want to follow in her footsteps. She had a good friend who traveled with her - they were both widows, both interested in history and archeology, and were a good match. The only person in my circle of friends and family that is a good match for me is my sister, and she has a husband and child she doesn't want to leave behind while traveling. I'm not willing to wait, so I guess I'll have to strike out on my own! I found these essays to be inspiring, as I said, and I recommend the collection to anyone who likes travel, whether alone or in a group.
January 14, 2008
I watched Persuasion on "Masterpiece" (when did they drop the "Theatre"?) on PBS last night. It has been awhile since I read the book, but I thought this was an adequate film version. It was very short - I think only 80 minutes of actual story - so the story was quite condensed. I had trouble telling who some of the characters were supposed to be. I thought Anne and Captain Wentworth were well-cast. Anthony Head was great as her dad - I've liked him since the old Taster's Choice commercials. Overall, it made me want to re-read the book, which is not a bad thing.
January 12, 2008
1. "Finisterra" by David Moles
2. "Lighting Out" by Ken Macleod
3. "The Ocean Is A Snowflake Four Billion Miles Away" by John Barnes
4. "Saving Tiamaat" by Gweyneth Jones
5. "Of Late I Dreamt Of Venus" by James Van Pelt
6. "Verthandi's Ring" by Ian Mcdonald
7. "Sea Change" by Una Mccormack
8. "The Sky Is Large and the Earth Is Small" by Chris Roberson
9. "Glory" by Greg Egan
10. "Against The Current" by Robert Silverberg
11. "Alien Archeology" by Neal Asher
12. "The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate" by Ted Chiang
13. "Beyond The Wall" by Justin Stanchfield
14. "Kiosk" by Bruce Sterling
15. "Last Contact" by Stephen Baxter
16. "The Sledge-Maker's Daughter" by Alastair Reynolds
17. "Sanjeev and Robotwallah" by Ian Mcdonald
18. "The Skysailor's Tale" by Michael Swanwick
19. "Of Love and Other Monsters" by Vandana Singh
20. "Steve Fever" by Greg Egan
21. "Hellfire at Twilight" by Kage Baker
22. "The Immortals of Atlantis" by Brian Stableford
23. "Nothing Personal" by Pat Cadigan
24. "Tideline" by Elizabeth Bear
25. "The Accord" by Keith Brooke
26. "Laws of Survival" by Nancy Kress
27. "The Mists of Time" by Tom Purdom
28. "Craters" by Kristine Kathryn Rusch
29. "The Prophet of Flores" by Ted Kosmatka
30. "Stray" by Benjamin Rosenbaum & David Ackert
31. "Roxie" by Robert Reed
32. "Dark Heaven" by Gregory Benford
I love short-form SF. It has always been a way for me to discover new authors, and the short form is a fun challenge. The author has to pack a lot of information into a few words, and the reader is expected to keep up! I'm especially looking forward to the Nancy Kress, Gregory Benford, Kristine Kathryn Rusch and the Stephen Baxter, but I look forward to reading something from new-to-me authors as well!
January 11, 2008
|You Are 75% Left Brained, 25% Right Brained|
The left side of your brain controls verbal ability, attention to detail, and reasoning.
Left brained people are good at communication and persuading others.
If you're left brained, you are likely good at math and logic.
Your left brain prefers dogs, reading, and quiet.
The right side of your brain is all about creativity and flexibility.
Daring and intuitive, right brained people see the world in their unique way.
If you're right brained, you likely have a talent for creative writing and art.
Your right brain prefers day dreaming, philosophy, and sports.
As seen at 1morechapter.
I do like reading and quiet, but I prefer cats to dogs.
January 10, 2008
- How did you come across your favorite author(s)? Recommended by a friend? Stumbled across at a bookstore? A book given to you as a gift?
- Was it love at first sight? Or did the love affair evolve over a long acquaintance?
Most of my favorites I discovered myself by stumbling across the book at a bookstore or library. I do recall my best friend handing me "Nine Princes in Amber" by Roger Zelazny and telling me "You have to read this!" She was so right - it remains one of my favorites. The later books in the series are not as good as the first 5, and it pains me every time I remember that he passed away so there is no chance of future books from him.
January 9, 2008
|You Are Likely a First Born|
At your darkest moments, you feel guilty.
At work and school, you do best when you're researching.
When you love someone, you tend to agree with them often.
In friendship, you are considerate and compromising.
Your ideal careers are: business, research, counseling, promotion, and speaking.
You will leave your mark on the world with discoveries, new information, and teaching people to dream.
This is true: I am a first born. Not all of the description is true, but it's pretty close!
January 8, 2008
January 7, 2008
Dark Ages America - Morris Berman
My Year of Meats - Ruth Ozeki
The Rest Falls Away: the Gardella Vampire Chronicles - Colleen Gleason
Mythology - Edith Hamilton (to replace the tattered copy I have)
Stranger in a Strange Land - Heinlein (another replacement - my copy is being held together by packing tape!)
Intern - Sanjeep Jauhar (a rare hardcover purchase for me)
Go Your Own Way: Women Travel the World Solo - Faith Conlon (I think I need to get out more!)
and on reserve at the library:
The Reluctant Fundamentalist - Mohsin Hamid
War Trash - Ha Jin
Punching in : the unauthorized adventures of a front-line employee - Alex Frankel.
I guess I'll be busy!
January 6, 2008
January 5, 2008
January 4, 2008
January 3, 2008
I'm looking forward to the new Maria Doria Russell - "Dreamers of the Day." And I haven't given up hope that David Gerrold will someday release the next installment of "The War Against the Chtorr." He claims on his website to be writing it, but it appears to not have been updated since 2004.
January 2, 2008
The author managed to get a great behind-the-scenes look at the current Supreme Court. He has great insight into the philosophy and worldview of each justice, and how this was and is reflected in their decisionmaking. I love books about the Court, and this one was very readable and brought many of the recent cases to life.