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A Different Book Meme!

Because I've marked my quota of essays for the day, I can indulge myself in this nice meme, seen in tree_and_leaf and oursin

1) The worst reading experience that you have ever had?
I'm tempted to say Twilight, but it wasn't really THAT bad... Norman Mailer's Armies of the Night was pretty annoying. But I think the thing I found most unpleasant to read was two or three novels by Samuel Beckett that I had to read in uni. I just found them ... unpleasant, depressing, boring, sad.

2) The best reading experience you have ever had?
That's a tough one. Maybe the sheer delight of reading A Little White Horse for the first time. Or Fire and Hemlock. Or The Lord of the Rings.

3) Which book has affected or influenced you the most so far?
That's impossible to say. Maybe Jeanette Winterson's Sexing the Cherry because it set me off on my PhD topic and has influenced a lot of my reading choices and ways of thinking about literature since. In other ways, Jill Paton Walsh's Unleaving, because it introduced me to Virginia Woolf and Yeats and Gerard Manley Hopkins (and I'm going to Cornwall this year partly because of it).

4) Have you ever read a book that you got really scared of?
Um, I can't remember the author, but the book is The Historian, about Dracula or something - that seriously creeped me out and I couldn't read it. Stephen King's The Shining scared the s&@# out of me.

5) What do you use as a bookmark?
Haha. I have a collection of about a thousand bookmarks from all over the world - I can take my pick!
Seriously, my mother was very strict about how to treat books, and used to scold me if I left one turned face down on a table and would NEVER countenance turning down the corners or any such sacrilege. Thus I always try to find something to use as a bookmark, even if it's only a bus ticket or a shopping receipt.

6) When do you usually read? At home, work, while cooking, in the morning, noon, afternoon, before you go to bed...?
Most regularly, at mealtimes and at bedtime, but I'm happy to read anywhere, anytime.

7) Do you remember the first book that you read?
Not really - it gets confused with what was read to me. I do remember a Child's Illustrated Classics Anthology that had nursery rhymes and fairy tales and excerpts from things like Treasure Island. I remember reading that in bed when I was pretty young. And a "Listen With Mother" anthology. And The World of Pooh

8) Which do you prefer - paperback or hardcover?
Hardcover, except those honking big publishers' vanity ones that you can't hold in one hand.

9) What are you currently reading? What page are you on?
Diana Wynne Jones, The Merlin Conspiracy p. 145. This is partly for pleasure, partly for the DWJ conference.

10) Do you ever leave "a mark" (deliberate and/or not deliberate) in your books? For example, write in them, underline quotes, coffeemarks or food crumbs and etc.
Never in books that I really care about (except possibly crumbs or tea stains). I do underline and annotate books I'm writing about or teaching, but I have been known to buy an extra copy in order to do so.

11) Does the title, number of pages and the cover affect you when you are considering a specific book? Not really. I might be put off by a particularly lurid cover (like I wouldn't read the Vorkosigan books for ages because of their horrible covers) Length is never a deterrent or an incentive, except inversely, where I might choose a nice long book if I'm going on a trip or staying somewhere like China.

12) Do you ever browse through to the last pages in order find out the ending?
I'm ashamed to admit that yes, sometimes.

13) Has knowing the ending of a book (example, through spoilers or a movie) ever made you decide whether you will read the book or not?

14) Is there a book that you have read more than five times?
Oh yes, many of them, and some more than ten or even twenty times.

15) Have you ever been in an accident where the book was the cause? (for example, almost getting hit by a car when reading while walking, or having stacks of books falling on you from a bookshelf...)
I had a couple of near-fatal accidents involving bookshelves, but none involving books alone.

16) Do you sell/give away your books or do you keep them, even though you don't like one of them?
I give away a lot, or trade them in for second-hand credit. Often I give them away and then buy them again :)

17) Do you have some kind of book system, where you write down what you are reading, have bought, will read, will buy and etc?
I try and keep lists of books that I want to read, and recently have been keeping lists of books read. GoodReads works well for those purposes.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
Apr. 19th, 2009 05:19 am (UTC)
Thanks for recommending Unleaving. I'll be reading it soon.

I found Beckett's novels intriguing and often amusing. I must be weird.

Beware those shevles!
Apr. 19th, 2009 07:30 am (UTC)
If you're weird, you're not alone. I find Beckett very funny much of the time & I love the language in his work. (But uplifting it is not-- that part I get.)
Apr. 19th, 2009 08:56 pm (UTC)
I really like this meme too - unusual questions, and interesting answers. I do hope I wasn't the only person to cringe at 'amount of pages' though! :)
Apr. 19th, 2009 11:44 pm (UTC)
heh - yeah, I noticed that afterwards and keep forgetting to go in and edit it. I'll do it now!
May. 12th, 2009 09:55 pm (UTC)
I read Goldengrove and Unleaving on Porthminster Beach in St Ives - a very strange feeling, with the little train from the book puffing behind my back every hour or so. I hope you like Cornwall as much as I do!
May. 13th, 2009 04:45 am (UTC)
I remember going there on holiday as a child, and my mum always loved it. I'm looking forward to seeing it with all these literary filters in place :)
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )


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