In which I, a reader, answer the Shelf Awareness questionaire.

Shelf Awareness is a daily newsletter for readers and writers that contains smart articles about the book industry, new releases, who’s appearing on TV, and other things that I usually need to know.  (It’s free, and I encourage you to sign up for it. It’s always a good way to spend a couple minutes a day.)

There’s also a fun section where people answer questions about books.

And since I was thinking about what my answers would be, I thought I’d do it myself!

On your nightstand now:

“The Enchanted Wanderer” by Nikolai Leskov, one of the novellas that Melville House has ingenously printed in book form.  It’s a quirky little tale of vignettes from of a man who is doomed never to die.  I’m really enjoying it. Also, a shout out to Melville House for being a thoroughly modern publishing company — there’s a QR code in the book to access additional information, like more short stories by Leskov, and photographs.

Favorite book when you were a child:

Too many.  I went through serious Ramona Quimby and Babysitters Club phases, but it really all does come back to Roald Dahl’s “Matilda,” which is still every bit as great a read as I can remember.  Oh, how I tried to make glasses of water float using only my mind.  (Never happened.)

Your top five authors:

Charlotte Bronte, Mary Shelley, Christopher Moore, Roald Dahl, and Stephen King.

Book you’ve faked reading:

🙂  “Heart of Darkness” — in high school AP English. I tried, really I did, but I just didn’t care. And I resorted to Cliff’s Notes. And I did fine on the test. And I don’t remember a darn thing about any of it, except for watching “Apocalypse Now.”

Book you’re an evangelist for:

I believe if everyone in the world read Christopher Moore’s “A Dirty Job,” we’d all be happier people.

Book you’ve bought for the cover:

“The Monsters of Templeton,” by Lauren Groff.  And the book was actually great.

Book that changed your life:

“Jane Eyre” is my hands down favorite book of all time.  From the moment I first read it, there’s never been another book like it.  It did a lot to awaken me to how purely awesome a book could be — I’d been a hardcore reader all my life, but this was something else.

Favorite line from a book:

(From “Jane Eyre,” Chapter 27) —

Rochester: “If you were mad, do you think I should hate you?”

Jane: “I do indeed, sir.”

Rochester: “Then you are mistaken, and you know nothing about me, and nothing about the sort of love of which I am capable. Every atom of your flesh is as dear to me as my own: in pain and sickness it would still be dear. Your mind is my treasure, and if it were broken, it would be my treasure still: if you raved, my arms should confine you, and not a strait waistcoat — your grasp, even in fury, would have a charm for me: if you flew at me as wildly as that woman did this morning, I should receive you in an embrace, at least as fond as it would be restrictive. I should not shrink from you with disgust as I did from her: in your quiet moments you should have no watcher and no nurse but me; and I could hang over you with untiring tenderness, though you gave me no smile in return; and never weary of gazing into your eyes, though they had no longer a ray of recognition for me.”

And that, dear reader, is why we love Edward Fairfax Rochester despite his numerous less-than-lovable traits.

Book you most want to read again for the first time:

Today? “The Poseidon Adventure.”  Any other day, I’d say Neil Gaiman’s “The Sandman.”  To be able to take that adventure again with a totally open mind for the first time would be a gift.

If you could encourage any beginning writer, what would you say?

Don’t try to be like anyone else.  Just be you.  (And vampires don’t sparkle.  Stop it.)




About JamieP

Books. Adventures. Chicago. Married. Mommy. Cat.

Posted on October 19, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Like you, Jane Eyre changed my reading life forever. Although I was a voracious reader from a young age (The Bobbsey Twins, Trixie Beldon, Nancy Drew), when I read Jane Eyre (I was 12 or 13) it rocked my world.

    Also – SO MUCH LOVE for your Twilight comment. As a huge BtVS/Ats fan (and just a vampire fan in general), sparkly vampires are just wrong. Imagine how much fun Spike would have with Edward!

    I found your blog via Twitter via Shelf Awareness, and I am looking forward to reading more from you.

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