Living in Canada, I’ve never experienced Book Expo America (no matter how much I want to go). And it sounds like such an amazing time with wonderful opportunities — so needless to say, I’m jealous of everyone and anyone who is attending this year. As a book blogger and book lover who can’t attend BEA, Armchair BEA is here to support me through my tears (along with the many other non-BEA bloggers out there), by giving us a chance to experience BEA right from the comfort of our own homes. This is my first year participating in it, so I can’t wait!
To start this little series off, we’re given a set of questions to introduce ourselves to everyone. Hopefully I don’t bore you all to death.
- Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging?
My name’s Lauren and I’ve been blogging for a little less than a year now. I started with Tumblr as just a generic blog, but then also created a book blog on WordPress to satisfy my bookish needs.
- Where in the world are you blogging from? Tell a random fact or something special about your current location. Feel free to share pictures.
I’m blogging from good ol’ Calgary, Alberta. We’re famous for our Calgary Stampede (and if you’ve never heard of that before, I shake my head at you).
- Have you previously participated in Armchair BEA? What brought you back for another year? If you have not previously participated, what drew you to the event?
This is my first year, and I didn’t even know it existed until I came across a post about it on my WordPress newsfeed. So happy I did though!
- What are you currently reading, or what is your favorite book you have read so far in 2013?
I’m currently reading Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater. It’s definitely better than I thought it would be! But I think it’s safe to say my favourite 2013 book so far is Me Before You by Jojo Moyes.
- Tell us one non-book-related thing that everyone reading your blog may not know about you.
I split my time up between living one week at my home with my parents and sister, and one week with my aunt and grandma, alternating. Ever since my grandpa died in January of 2012, I’ve been living like this to help look after my grandma who has dementia.
- Name your favorite blog(s) and explain why they are your favorite(s).
I think I’ve exhausted all the blogs I think you should check out from my award posts. But I’ll just give you my top three blogs that are my most favourite: A Bookish Heart, Bundle of Books, and Book, Interrupted.
- Which is your favorite post that you have written that you want everyone to read?
There are a couple, actually, that I think are overlooked. If you love Pride and Prejudice, I urge you to check out my book-to-film adaptions post on this classic story. If you want to read a recent novel that will no doubt make you cry, go read my review on Me Before You (it contains no real spoilers). And if you love to collect books, definitely check out my post on book collecting for Thoughts for a Thursday.
- If you could eat dinner with any author or character, who would it be and why?
I would love to have dinner with J.K. Rowling to thank her again and again for creating my childhood, adolescent and teenage years, for making me who I am today. And there are far too many characters I would love to meet in real life to name here.
- What literary location would you most like to visit? Why?
Oh dear. Here’s my list: Hogwarts, Middle Earth, Inkheart, Narnia, the Realms, Diagon Alley, Hogsmeade… Need I really say why?
- What is your favorite part about the book blogging community?
I love being able to chat about books with people from all over the world, sharing thoughts, experiences and giving each other glimpses into our “normal” lives. It’s a great feeling being a part of something so close!
- Is there anything that you would like to see change in the coming years?
With regards to books? Yes. Please please please stop putting stylized/photoshopped people on book covers, thinking that you’re drawing in teenage readers. Trust me. You’re not.
Genre: Classic Literature
I wish I could be one of those types who delve into a classic novel each year (or more than once each year), but sadly that’s never been me. I love classic stories, I do, but I was exposed to mediocre ones in school that the genre just sort of became dry for me. In high school I read Othello, Romeo and Juliet (which I am not a fan of, by the way), The Grapes of Wrath (which I stopped reading and relied on my friend’s notes for the the tests), Macbeth and Brave New World. And classic novels that I’ve read outside of school can be narrowed down to Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Emma, The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings. Yup. Quite the list, right?
I do have more classics at home though, sitting on my shelf. These include: Persuasion, Sense and Sensibility, Wuthering Heights, Little Women, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Treasure Island, and perhaps some others whose titles are escaping me.
Sometimes I think I’m more in love with the ideal of classic literature than I am with the literature itself. Don’t get me wrong — some of those books are must-reads for lovers of great literature. But just because they’re considered to be classics doesn’t always mean it’s well written. Take The Lord of the Rings, for example. Those books are known all over the world and is considered one of the finest works in fantasy. But it’s ridiculous just trying to get through it. I loved the story, really, but the writing wasn’t tight at all. Now The Hobbit, on the other hand, read entirely different than Tolkien’s predecessor. It was clean, tight and kept me entertained the entire way through.
Today, most people tend to go for the darker, haunting, romantic stories… which is why, if I had to recommend a classic novel to someone that I thoroughly enjoyed, it would be Emma. I loved that book so much. It was funny, light and entertaining. An old-fashioned “chick lit.”