Friday Free-For-All

Welcome to my Friday Free-For-All (everything is already a thing). Basically, that means I’ll post about whatever the crap I want on Fridays. Even stuff that has nothing to do with books. Today, it’s about … yeah, it’s still about books. But that’s because I decided to do this today and didn’t really have a plan. Anyway, I found this book survey over at The Paperback Princess and figured it would be a nice start.

Your Favorite Book Cover:
I liked it so much the first time I saw it. I stopped, walked back to the bookstore and took a picture so I would remember it.

What are you reading right now?

Far From You – Tess Sharpe (physical)

Inkheart – Cornelia Funke (audio)


Do you have any idea what you’ll read when you’re done with that?

In the Woods – Tana French (physical)

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – J.K Rowling (audio)


What five books have you always wanted to read but haven’t got round to?

Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens

Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy

Her Fearful Symmetry – Audrey Niffenegger (I’ve been halfway through this one for a couple years)

The Princess Bride – William Goldman

A Game of Thrones – George R.R. Martin (yeah, this a bandwagon one, but I’ve owned it for like two years and still haven’t even opened the cover)


What magazines do you have in your bathroom/ lounge right now?

Archie Comics


What’s the worst book you’ve ever read?

Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later – Francine Pascal. The bar was set low, really low, and yet…


What book seemed really popular but you didn’t like?

Pride & Prejudice – Jane Austen.

(Sorry to Paperback Princess,  I’m sure this answer is distressing). I’ve read it more than once. I’ve seen the movies. I took an entire Jane Austen course. I just don’t like this book. Or most of her other novels. Honestly, I’m just not an Austen fan. This was a problem for many of the people in my class.


What’s the one book you always recommend to just about everyone?

The Giver – Lois Lowry

I read this for the first time as an adult, so this isn’t a nostalgia thing. I legitimately think this is an excellent book about seeing the truth not just in others but in ourselves and the society around us.


What are your three favorite poems?

I hate poetry. I make no apologies.


Where do you usually get your books?

The library! I’m there at least once a week. My library books have created a stack of TBR books I’ve bought and haven’t been able to get around to. As a side note, my city’s library was just named Library of the Year 2014. The first Canadian library to earn this title ever! I love my library so, so much.


When you were little, did you have any particular reading habits?

I was allowed to stay up and read as long as I wanted, as long as I stayed in my room and didn’t complain in the morning. This worked for my early onset insomnia. Reading myself to sleep is still part of my nightly ritual.


What’s the last thing you stayed up half the night reading because it was too good to put down?

Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares – Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

I just needed to know what would happen when they met!


Have you ever “faked” reading a book?

I don’t even know what this means. Like pretend I’ve read something I haven’t or hold a book in front of me and pretend to be reading it? This requires too much thought so it gets no answer.


Have you ever bought a book just because you liked the cover?

All the damn time. Book covers matter. How else would you decide on a book? Pick up every single one and read the blurb on all of them? Nope. It starts with the cover.


What was your favourite book when you were a child?

Anne of Green Gables – L.M. Montgomery

This book was a huge part of my childhood. Me, my mom, and my sister all still love the series.


The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe – C.S. Lewis

The entire Narnia series. Every person in my immediate family owns a copy of the series plus to two ‘family’ copies.


Sorry, it’s got to be both of these. I can’t pick one over the other


What book changed your life?

Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead – Sheryl Sandberg

There’s a lot of discussion around this book and whether this is the right way to take control of your career. Whatever you believe, this book reminds me it’s not just okay to have faith in myself and my abilities – and a willingness to express my amazing skills– but my responsibility.


What is your favorite passage from a book?

“Poets seem to write more easily about love than prose writers. For a start, they own that flexible ‘I’…. Then again, poets seem able to turn bad love – selfish, shitty love – into good love poetry. Prose writers lack this power of admirable, dishonest transformation. We can only turn bad love into prose about bad love. So we are envious (and slightly distrustful) when poets talk to us of love.” – Julian Barnes, The History of the World in 10 ½ Chapters.


Who are your top five favorite authors?

I have so many authors that I love for different reasons. Narrowing it down to five is work and not completely accurate. These are simply five authors I really like for different reasons.

Kelly Armstrong – fluffy urban fiction fun

J.K Rowling – for more than just Harry Potter. I’ve liked everything she’s written.

David Levithan – great YA

Gillian Flynn – perfectly unlikable characters

Jussi Adler-Olsen – some of the best crime drama translation I’ve read


What book has no one heard about but should read?

Written on the Body – Jeanette Winterson

It’s so beautifully written. I’m not a fan of romance, but this book tugs right at the heartstrings. The genderless narrator opens allows every reader to define their own experience


What books are you an ‘evangelist’ for?

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll

It probably doesn’t need an evangelist, but I think everyone should read it. Too many people are missing their whimsy.


What are your favorite books by a first time author?

The Rook – Daniel O’Malley

Playing with the idea of spy stories, urban fiction, chess, and British hierarchy, it is a delightfully playful read.


What is your favourite classic book?

Again, it’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. I have an entire shelf just for the different editions, retellings, essays, etc that I own.


Five other notable mentions?

Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card – As strongly as I disagree with the author’s personal opinions, I cannot not love this book. It is so good. So good!

Son of a Witch – Gregory Maguire – Everyone has heard of Wicked. Lots of people love the musical (it’s pretty entertaining) but if you’ve read the book, you know that it’s not all happy and singy. It’s dark and twisty and sad. Son of a Witch is even better. It’s the stand out book of the series.

When She Woke – Hillary Jordan – This book has its flaws, but it speaks to the irresponsibility of social shaming as acceptable practice.

Persuasion – Jane Austen – Yes, I gave Jane a hard time earlier, but Persuasion is a stand out.

The Thirteenth Tale – Diane Setterfield – For anyone who likes books about books, and a story within a story, and gothic twists – read this.




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