Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Question Tuesday! (Didn't even mean to do that, but Nerdfighters FTW!)

Okay, let's get real. It's the day after a holiday weekend. I don't know how it is where you are, but it's a gray chilly day in my 'hood, and I'd really like to crawl back under the covers. But I'm trying to Act Like a Grownup over here in Looking for a Job-land, and so I soldier on!

But let's ease into it today. There's a book meme going around Tumblr. I figure I'll go out on a limb and answer some of the questions. We're still getting to know each other, so what the hell.

1. Favorite childhood book? 
Oh my god, this is already impossible. How do you pick just one? But okay, one I remember reading over and over again was There's a Boy in the Girls'
Bathroom, by Louis Sachar. Bradley Chalkers (that name!) wasn't like any of the main characters in my other books. He could act mean, but he wasn't. He had an incredible imagination. He was funny. This book is so awkward sometimes, I'm cringing just thinking about it. So good.

3. What books do you have on request at the library? 
I had to check. It's The Fifth Wave, by Rick Yancey, and Summer and Bird, by Katherine Catmull. I don't even remember anything about that second one. That's okay, it's fun to go in blind.
7. Do you prefer to read one book at a time, or several at once?

I like to go through 'em one at a time. It feels frustrating to juggle a bunch at once and not make progress on any. That said, I can do it if one's a book of short stories or essays and the other is fiction.  

12. What is your reading comfort zone?

Fiction. I enjoy almost any genre, but fiction, and specifically novels, is my sweet spot.

15. What is your policy on book lending?

I've been burned before, but I'll still do it. When I really want someone to read something, I find it really expedites things to hand them the book. And then ask them how they're coming along with it two to forty times a day...

21. What will inspire you to recommend a book?

I love recommending books to friends I think Have It All Wrong about some author or series. Harry Potter's a lot of fun to foist on people who expect it to be a simple children's book, and then get totally and completely hooked. And I can always suggest a Stephen King book to people who expect them to just be gross, forgettable horror stories. I love suggesting John Green's books to people who think YA books must be stupid. Basically, if I genuinely think they'll love it, I'll recommend it. Subverting their expectations is a bonus.
25. Have you ever read a self-help book?

Do books on writing count? If so, YES. Actually, I once read a bright pink book about being single and loving it, that recommended treating yo'self by taking a bath in champagne. I thought that sounded expensive. And...sticky.
26. Favourite cookbook?
The Smitten Kitchen cookbook! I don't usually use cookbooks (although Chef has a full set of bookshelves of them), but I've made so many awesome things from this one!  

35. Favorite Poet?

Frank O'Hara. His poems have this amazing energy to them, and humor. We used one in our wedding:
I'm not going to cry all the time
nor shall I laugh all the time,
I don't prefer one "strain" to another.
I'd have the immediacy of a bad movie,
not just a sleeper, but also the big,
overproduced first-run kind. I want to be
at least as alive as the vulgar. And if
some aficionado of my mess says "That's
not like Frank!", all to the good! I
don't wear brown and grey suits all the time,
do I? No. I wear workshirts to the opera,
often. I want my feet to be bare,
I want my face to be shaven, and my heart--
you can't plan on the heart, but
the better part of it, my poetry, is open. 

I love that.

38. Favorite fictional character? 

Almost every character from Harry Potter. And Howl from Howl's Moving Castle. And Death from the Discworld books.
39. Favourite fictional villain?

Oh, this list is long...and mostly from Stephen King books, now that I think of it. I love Harold Lauder from The Stand, because we get to see his entire journey from awkward fat kid to...I won't spoil it. But it's great. Same with Jack Torrance from The Shining. (Is he a villain? I mean, yes, but he's also ambiguous in that brilliant way so many of King's villains are.) Annie Wilkes from Misery. Henry Bowers from It. So many more. I just love that King doesn't write flat bad guys. There's always something there, even if it's a single line in a thousand page book (I'm looking at you, It) that makes you empathize with the bad guy.
44. Favorite film adaptation of a novel?

I get a lot of shit for this, but I LOVE the 199-whatever miniseries adaptation of The Shining. I know Kubrick's film is beloved by tons of people, but I saw it after I read the book, and couldn't get over how loosely based on the reading material it felt. I love the miniseries because you get to sympathize with Jack as he breaks down. It makes it that much more tragic because, unlike the Nicholson version, he isn't just an asshole the entire time. And the music is KILLER. My sister showed it to me when I was 9 and I was terrified. I haven't kept a shower curtain closed since.
This dude is NOT Ron Weasley. He's just not.
45. Most disappointing film adaptation?

All of Harry Potter. Ron's my favorite character and he wasn't even in the films--they just got some ginger kid to pull funny faces and not have many lines. Humbug.
46. The most money I’ve ever spent in the bookstore at one time?

A bit over $100 when we visited The Strand in NYC.
48. What would cause you to stop reading a book half-way through?


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

The Night Circus. It's such a lovely book and there were such lovely descriptions...but I felt the story and characters were there to serve the beautiful descriptions, not the other way around. Maybe it's just the mood I was in at the time, but my impression was of a very "surface" kind of book without a lot of depth.

55. Favorite guilt-free, pleasure reading?
Everything I read! Since I'm not in school anymore, I only read for pleasure. I don't need books to be highbrow. I just need them to be good.

Aaaaand the sun's out! Today can officially begin.

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