Sunday Tag: Book Blogger Test Tag

*my continuing attempts to be a more organized book blogger*

Book Blogger Test Tag

(found here)

The Rules: You must answer all of these questions truthfully and once you’ve completed this tag, tag 5 other book bloggers to answer the questions next.

What are your top three book pet hates?

  1. Somebody telling me I have too many books.
  2. Dog-earring pages… use toilet paper if you have to, people, but don’t bend my pages and call that a bookmark!
  3. Not having enough time to read all the books.

Describe your perfect reading spot.

My perfect reading spot is… everywhere? I read everywhere – in my favorite pink wingback chair, on my front steps, on the swing in the yard, in the car, in waiting rooms… I read 50 pages while someone else watched a football game in the same room, just today. My only requirement for a perfect reading spot is that I have a good book to read.

Tell us three book confessions.

  1. I (might) have too many books. Maybe.
  2. I have used a square of (fresh off the roll) toilet paper as a bookmark… many moons ago when I was young and silly.
  3. For awhile, I used dollar bills as bookmarks in the hopes that I’d re-read a book and be excited by found money… then I worried I’d forget where I hid my money and collected it all back… and probably bought another book. I was young and silly then, too.

When was the last time you cried at a book?

The last time I cried at a book was… three weeks ago? I was reading Kate Mulgrew’s memoir How to Forget and some of the things she talked about were so similar to things I was, am going through. It was such a relief that I cried.

How many books are on your bedside table?

Just one. I’m no longer young and silly enough to think it’s a good idea to have six books going at once. So I read one, then I read another.

What is your favorite snack while you’re reading.

Just one snack? Candy, I guess. Chocolate or hard candy. I’m basically a little old lady with books and candy… and sometimes tea.

Name three books you’d recommend to everyone.

  1. A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell
  2. Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks
  3. A True Novel by Minae Mizumura

Show us a picture of your favorite shelf on your bookcase.

Ha! Just one favorite shelf? No such thing. All shelves are precious. Also, I don’t theme my shelves… I fit as many on as possible and call it a good life.

Write how much books mean to you in 3 words.

Books are life.

What’s your biggest reading secret?

Almanzo Wilder was my first book crush. Then I realized he was a real person… who was dead. Things got a bit awkward. Then I found Gilbert Blythe, and that seemed better. I still like Almanzo, though. He was actually a pretty fascinating, if flawed person… when he was alive, and as Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote him.

I tag:

Eh, I’m so late to tags I’m sure everybody has done this but, if you haven’t… TAG! You’re it!

🎅 Bookish Christmas Tag!!

Hello world! It’s December 6 so it’s *almost* Christmas! Close enough, anyway, to continue on my quest to be a Better Book Blogger, and do my very first Christmas related book tag!


Oh, am I the only one that excited? Sorry. And also not sorry, because that’s the spirit of Christmas. (Probably.)

Step One on my quest for a seasonally appropriate tag was Google, of course, and I quickly found one that seemed like a lovely place to start. It was the Bookish Christmas tag as done by Adventures of a Bibliophile (the similarities of our blog names are entirely coincidental and purely a happy accident, as I have a new bookish blog that I’m following!). Anyway, do check out her amazing blog!

And now, with no further ado, my Bookish Christmas🎄…

Father Christmas: Name a book you received as a child that you treasure to this day.

So easy… the Little House on the Prairie series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I got sick a lot as a kid and I got a new Little House book every time I went to the doctor. I still have those books and I am never letting go of them.

The Ghost of Christmas Past: Is there a book or series you like to revisit each year at Christmastime?

Not really. I’m a mood reader. This is why I fail at readathons and reading goals.

Christmas tree: Name a series that reaches new heights with every entry.

The Dark Artifices by Cassandra Clare. TDA isn’t even my favorite Cassandra Clare/Shadowhunters series but, gods, these books are ratcheting it up every time. (Since this is being written on the 3rd and posted on the 6th, you can just assume I’m reading Queen of Air and Darkness today… I hope I survive!)

Friends and family: Name a book with fantastic characters.

This would be easier to answer if it was “name a book that doesn’t have fantastic characters”! But that’s not what it says so… I’m going to go with… Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I saw myself in Louisa so much and she grows so much between that book and the second (is the third as good? should I get it?).

Decorations: Name a book with gorgeous cover you would proudly display on your shelves.

I do proudly display A True Novel by Minae Mizumura on my shelves. (The picture with this post is from Goodreads but it is the copy I have.) The box is gorgeous and the black and white photos on the books (and in the books) are so haunting and beautiful and good.

Christmas cards: Name a book that carries a great message.

So many books carry amazing messages, which sounds cliche but it is also absolutely true. But, in the spirit of the tag… The Agnes Browne Trilogy by Brendan O’Carroll is it. The story of an Irish family across the span of childhood to parenthood (Agnes is mother to small children, mother to grown children, and grandmother), it is the story of a family that will go to the proverbial ends of the earth for each other even when times are incredibly tough.

Ice and snow: Name a book that you were hoping to love but which ultimately left you feeling cold.

Can I say all the George R.R. Martin books for this one? I read the first four in the trilogy, an achievement in itself, and I’ve been meaning to re-read them for some time now and… now I kind of just want to get them off my shelves, you know. I think I liked them because I was supposed to like them and now… meh.

Christmas lunch: Name a book that was big and intimidating but oh so worth it in the end.

This one’s a tie, a tie between the very well known Gone With the Wind and the lesser known The Far Pavilions (by M.M. Kaye). The latter might just edge out the former because I don’t think I’ll read Scarlet and Rhett again but Anjuli and Ash are on my TBR to be revisited very soon!

Mince pies: Name a book you found sweet and satisfying.

Hmm, okay… the Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery pops directly into my mind here and I feel like Anne Shirley would be just fine with that so let’s go with the absolutely adorable story of Anne.

Presents: What book do you wish you could give everyone to read.

The book I wish I could give everyone to read, the book I have convinced people to read (sometimes by lending my precious copy out!), and the book I have badgered people to read is A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell. I’ve read it more times than any other book, even those in the YA series I’m addicted too, and I’m still ticked off nobody made it into a movie. It would be an amazing movie, Hollywood! Pay attention! Catch up!

Spreading the festive cheer: Tag some friends to help spread the festive bookish love!

I don’t have book blogger friends so… anybody who happens to find themselves here and thinks this might be fun… I tag you! Just leave a comment with a link to your post if you do it so I can read yours!

Merry Christmas, people! xo

Book Tagging #1

I’ve done book tags here on this blog before. You know, the ones where you ask X number of blogs you follow to do the same tags? Well, my lovely friend Alix emailed me a themed book tag that she worked up and filled out so I’m posting my answers to her tag here.

Read it, if you like, and leave comments about what I answered and what I should have answered and what I should read to answer better. Better yet, please do copy this onto your own blog and answer the tags yourself. (Leave a link in the comments so I can see how you compare to me!).

It’s fun, I promise!

Playing With Your Emotions

Book that makes you happy: The Agnes Browne Trilogy by Brendan O’Carroll

I’m interpreting ‘happy’ to mean laughing, smiling happy… not just satisfying. And these three books made me happy. Even though they deal with serious issues of death and illness, Agnes Browne still makes me laugh. She’s a traditional Irish lady with an often accidentally dirty sense of humor. The books make me happy even more because my grandparents borrowed them from me and loved them and my grandmother even told her cancer doctor about the scene where Agnes and her friend Marion debate whether or not they’ve ever had “organisms” while in bed with their husbands!

Book that makes you sad: Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks

You know those books that make you cry so hard you can’t see the pages? This is that book and so much more. It’s more sad because it’s so real, even though it’s fiction. You just know that thousands upon thousands of people went through what Stephen and all the other soldiers in the story actually went through in the trenches of World War I.

Book that makes you angry: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

I wanted to love this book and for 900 pages I did. Then there were another 40 or so pages and I hated it. Lisbeth deserved so much more than the crap-tacular ending she got in the first book in the series. Blomkvist was pretty much a pompous idiot but he treated her alright. But after building Lisbeth to be a dark, tortured soul who relies on no own but herself, having her skip happily into the sunset was just wrong.

Book that makes you nostalgic: Anne of Green Gables by LM Montgomery

My fifth grade teacher read this to us and I can officially call it the second series I was addicted too. I made my sister and my cousin read the book and watch the movie, after my teacher showed us the movie. They didn’t like it as much as me but… I still reread the books.

Book that makes you scared: The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins

Yes, these books are futuristic, post-apocalyptic fiction but… it could be real! Think about it. Monster storms washing away coastlines. Check. Famines and droughts across wide swatches of the earth. Check. Super rich people trying desperately to consolidate power and keep anyone in the 99% from getting any power. Check. Warring hotspots all over the world. Check. Threats of nuclear war. Check! Long story short… so scary.

Book that makes you surprised: The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin

I entered a Goodreads giveaway for this book having only seen anything about it in passing. I just wanted to win a free book. And I did. I am still surprised by how much I love a book about an old man in the Pacific Northwest who wants nothing more than to do right by the people he cares about.

Book that makes you disappointed: Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer

This book spends 500 pages building up to a battle of pure good vs. pure evil. The battle never happens. Why? Because Stephenie Meyer couldn’t kill someone she might want to use in a story later. She should have left the battle out entirely. Because a long, drawn out conversation and everyone happily running off to have sex does not a happy, satisfying end make.

Book that makes you distressed: A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell

Not a lot of happy, uplifting stuff happened during World War II. Facts are facts. It isn’t that stuff that we hear about. But Russell’s book is about that. It’s about a group of people fighting with everything they have to do know more than simply survive. And they should get to. But it’s real because they don’t all get to. The deaths in the book are poetic and beautiful as much as they are heartbreaking and distressing… even the fifth time through the book.

Book that makes you confused: most books by Stephen King and Dean Koontz

My mind just does not work like their minds do. It’s a shame because if I could write like them I’d be rolling money. I’ve finished two King books… Under the Dome and 11/22/63… and am still confused by 11/22/63. The other King books I’ve started… I quit them all because I got too confused.

Book that makes you grateful: Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder and Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

Little House on the Prairie: I love to read because of Little House. I remember being little and sitting on the couch with my mom while she read the Little House books to me. Those books made me want to learn to read. So I did. Haven’t looked back since.

Twilight: Make fun of Twilight all you will but there are awesome people who love those books, people who I would not know if I wasn’t entirely and hopelessly addicted to Twilight and the fandom it’s created.