More book fun

It’s quite the dreary, rainy day in Maryland . . . and I have a few cheery soundtracks on repeat to help me cut through the darkness! And, of course, lists always make me feel better. 🙂 Like lots of other bloggers, I’ve seen this meme making its rounds — and it looks fun. Here we go!

Hardback, trade paperback or mass market paperback?  Definitely trade paperback! I’m fine with mass markets, too, but definitely don’t like hardcovers. Not only do they cost more, thereby limiting my desire to get them when they’re first out, but they’re just . . . clunky. And awkward. Not easily transported.

bordersBarnes & Noble or Borders? Definitely Borders! Okay, as a contingent employee, I’m biased . . . but I genuinely prefer the laid-back vibe of Borders stores over B&N.

Bookmark or dog-ear?  Bookmark — I can’t stand to dog-ear books. Unless I’m out, need to highlight a passage for myself and don’t want to write in the book! I usually just go ahead and run a pen beneath the words anyway, but I try to behave and keep the pages clean.

Amazon or brick-and-mortar? Brick-and-mortar. I love doing online research for books but, if I figure the cost with shipping will be the same as just going over to get the book at Borders, I’ll drive over. I’m there all the time, anyway.

Alphabetize by author, or alphabetize by title, or random? My own shelves are organized by subject matter, more or less, but I would love to have everything alphabetical by author and subject, like we did at the store! Just not enough space for me to be that controlling.

Keep, throw away, or sell?  I keep the books I love, and then pass on the books I’m finished with and don’t have any strong feelings about. They go on BookMooch or are donated to friends or the library!

hp_chamberKeep dust jacket or toss it? I keep it, but I always take it off when I’m reading the book. Though the only hardcovers I’ve read in years were probably the Harry Potter series and the Twilight series!

Read with dust jacket or remove it?  Remove!

Short story or novel? Definitely novels! I do love Jhumpa Lahiri’s short stories, though. But that’s a big exception to the rule.

Harry Potter or Lemony Snicket? Oh, Harry! I haven’t read any of the Lemony Snicket books.

Stop reading when tired or at chapter breaks? If I’m reading during the day, I wait to finish a chapter. But if I’m reading before bed, I literally read until my eyes shut and the book falls! It’s way more effective than a sleeping drug! 🙂

“It was a dark and stormy night” or “Once upon a time”?  “Once upon a time.” Can’t pass up a good fairytale-like story!

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Have you ever… 100!

me_gondola

Gondola in Venice! June 2007

I’ve always been a sucker for quizzes, memes, lists, whatever you want to call them . . . and Rebecca posted one I hadn’t seen before, so here I am! Feel free to continue it on its journey, if you like!

I’ve bolded all the ones that apply to me.

1. Started my own blog (you’re here!)
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Started a book club
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sung a solo
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More bookshelf fun

The Bookshelf Meme — taken from A Striped Armchair:

The Rules
1. Tag 3-5 people, so the fun keeps going!
2. Leave a comment at the original post at A Striped Armchair, so that Eva can collect everyone’s answers.
3. If you leave a comment and link back to Eva as the meme’s creator, she will enter you in a book giveaway contest! She has a whole shelf devoted to giveaway books that you’ll be able to choose from, or a bookmooch point if you prefer.
4. Remember that this is all about enjoying books as physical objects, so feel free to describe the exact book you’re talking about, down to that warping from being dropped in the bath water…
5. Make the meme more fun with visuals! Covers of the specific edition you’re talking about, photos of your bookshelves, etc.

The book that’s been on your shelves the longest:

wheres_waldoThis honor would probably have to go the hardcover editions of Where’s Waldo? my sister and I received as children, many of them from our grandparents. I know we’ve had them since I was probably around eight years old and have read through them many, many times — especially when my cousin Ciara finally became old enough to read and enjoy them, too! I know I have several other children’s books and Bernstein Bears books that have been hanging around since before I was literate.

A book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time, etc.):

sight_houndWow! This could be a massive list stretching on forever. A few: I read Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones on summer vacation a few years ago, and every time I see the cover peeking out on my bookshelf I think about curling up at our beach house, listening to the rain pounding the roof as we all hunkered down from off the beach. Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway takes me right back to my British literature class from my junior year of college, plunking me down in those hard-backed chairs in that cold classroom with an equally cold professor. I adored the book, though. I poured through Pam Houston’s Sight Hound the summer I interned for a daily newspaper in D.C., looking forward to climbing aboard the commuter bus so I could pick up where I left off. When I started crying toward the end of the novel, I was crying for a lot of reasons that summer — and not all of them had to do with the passing of a pet. Some of them did, though. Sight Hound is totally warped now — my sister accidentally dropped it in the Atlantic Ocean! It’s okay, though; I think it has more character this way. And I once dropped one of her books in the ocean, so that’s fair enough.

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Books, books, books — a meme

Q. Which books do you irrationally cringe away from reading, despite seeing only positive reviews?

For a while, the Harry Potter series would be at the top of this list — for some reason, I just really, really refused to get into them. But I’ve come around since then. Now, I would say any sort of graphic novel, though I did let my boyfriend talk me into reading Maus — and yes, I liked it.

Q. 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?

To humor my inner 14-year-old, I’ll definitely have to say we’re heading off for an evening dinner on a gorgeous yacht — and I’ve gotta have Edward Cullen from Twilight on my arm! This is assuming I’m 17 — and not 23 — again. Because I guess we would look sort of awkward together. I’ll bring along Jennifer Weiner’s Cannie Shapiro from Good in Bed and Certain Girls to share girl-talk with Edward is getting me a sparkling beverage, and Cornelia Brown from Love Walked In and Belong to Me can come hang out with us after Edward retreats for the evening so we can relive every precious detail of his unexpected, romantic wedding proposal.

Q. You are told you can’t die until you read the most boring novel on the planet. While this immortality is great for a while, eventually you realise it’s past time to die. Which book would you expect to get you a nice grave?

I’ll gnab For Whom The Bell Tolls by Hemingway. Haven’t ever even tried it, but my sister groans at the mere mention of the novel.

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Booking Through Thursday: Beloved books

booking_through_thurs Yay, it’s Booking Through Thursday! Here’s this week’s meme, complete with my insightful, life-changing responses:

Q: What was the last book you bought?

The last book I bought would be Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan. But the last book I received would be Thank You For All Things by Sandra Kring.

Q. Name a book you have read MORE than once:

The Great Gatsby, though that was mostly for school. A book I’ve read more than once by choice is Sarah Dessen’s The Truth About Forever.

Q. Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life?
If yes, what was it?

Several books have taught me a lot about life, but I don’t know that any of them have fundamentally changed the way I see life as a whole. That’s probably bad. But books that really, really inspired me are Jonathan Safran Foer’s Everything Is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close; Philip Roth’s American Pastoral; and Marisa de los Santos’ Belong To Me.

Q. How do you choose a book? eg. by cover design and summary, recommendations or reviews?

I usually look for recommendations from friends and co-workers first, come up with a list of their favorites and then look at them on LibraryThing or Amazon. If I’m at the bookstore, I definitely look at cover designs! And summary is important, too. But honestly, I probably do most of my book searching on the Internet.

Q. Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction?

Definitely fiction, though I branch out every now and then.

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