I found this fun-looking and thought-provoking tag over at bluchickenninja (you should totally check out her blog) and decided to tag myself! Anything to distract me from the daily grind of my myriad of chronic illnesses.
1. Which book has been on your shelves the longest?
Audition by Michael Shurtleff. It was gifted to me by my high school musical theater director when I graduated in 2004. She was devastated that I decided not to go into theater, but gave me the book in case I ever wanted to.
On the inside, she wrote, “Laura- this book is a jewel- my theatre ‘Bible.’ I know you’ll love it…and I know you’ll always find a way to be onstage…it’s in you and you’re too good not to. I’ll always believe in you! Love, Ran”
2. What is your current read, your last read and the book you’ll read next?
I have two current reads: Ravensbruck by Sarah Helm and The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick. My last read was When God Doesn’t Fix It by Laura Story. And what will I read next? Hmm…probably The Radleys by Matt Haig.
3. What book(s) did everyone like and you hated?
Ok, I know not everyone liked these, but far too many people did and it irks me. That would be the disaster known as the Twilight series. I can’t stand Bella and how she completely shuts down when Edward leaves and how she is completely reliant on him for pretty much everything. What a pathetic reaction, and not a representation of a real, healthy relationship, yet the author has convinced millions of teenage girls that that’s how love is and what every teenage girl should strive for. And Edward is just a little bratty jerk anyway.
4. Which book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?
Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I attempted to read it while I was doing the show when I was 16, but I didn’t get very far through “the brick” before I gave up.
5. Which book are you saving for “retirement”?
Probably Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. The movie is one of my favorites of all time, so I tried to read the book when I was 12 or 13 and just couldn’t get into it.
6. Last page: read it first or wait till the end?
Wait until the end! If I accidentally end up reading the last page (like if I’m checking to see how many pages the book has), I get very sad, because then why bother to keep reading if you know how it ends?
7. Acknowledgements: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside?
Kind of both. I always skim them to see if anything interesting catches my eye.
8. Which book character would you switch places with?
A Hogwarts student, most likely a Ravenclaw, since that’s the house I always seem to be sorted into.
9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life?
One Million Lovely Letters by Jodi Ann Bickley. This is an absolutely beautiful book, “The inspiring true story of a young woman who survived a life-threatening illness and sends uplifting letters all around the world- a lifeline in her own darkest moments.” I read this book in February 2016 when I was beginning down a path of chronic illness that, four diagnoses later, shows no signs of slowing down in the diagnosis department. I was diagnosed with a brain tumor, a hernia, an aneurysm, and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) and I may also have Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS). My life is far from a picnic, but this book reminds me of when it all began a year ago. Ok, now I want to read it again. Add it to my list!
10. Name a book you acquired in some interesting way.
See answer to number 13.
11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?
No, but I remember I loaned a book to my ex-boyfriend from high school and I never got it back.
12. Which book has been with you to the most places?
Probably Eyes Wide Open by Ted Dekker. I carried it back and forth in my work bag for ages, hoping to have some down time to read it. I brought it with me on our hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, where we stayed at Phantom Ranch. I think I brought it with me on our trip to the U.K. And I believe I ended up finishing it during a slow night shift at work about a year after I’d started it.
13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad two years later?
Walden by Henry David Thoreau. Our English teacher was obsessed with Thoreau and it was the hardest unit to get through because he expected us to understand fully what we were reading and produce stellar essays from it. But since it was the first unit we did at the start of the school year (to show us what was expected of Advanced Placement English students), our class really bonded with each other and our teacher. When he was forced to retire at the end of the school year due to stupid politics, he knew no teacher after him would ever attempt to teach Thoreau, so he let us
steal have the school’s copies of the books so they wouldn’t be thrown out. I still have my copy and treasure it.
14. What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book?
I don’t think I’ve ever found anything strange in a book, except maybe the name of the previous owner.
15. Used or brand new?
It depends on the condition. I adore used paperbacks, but prefer hardcovers to be brand new.
16. Have you ever read a Dan Brown?
No, and I really don’t intend to.
17. Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book?
The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Don’t get me wrong, Tolkien was a one-of-a-kind writer. His books are beautiful. But seeing the characters come to life in such a beautiful way is just breathtaking.
18. A book that NEVER should have been published.
Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton. Because really, who attempts suicide by sledding into a tree?
19. Have you ever read a book that’s made you hungry, cookbooks being excluded from this question?
Reading The Plum Tree by Ellen Marie Wiseman made me crave schnitzel and spaetzle because the book takes place in Germany during World War Two.
20. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?
My friend Sara.