Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Books and Reading Habits

A friend whose blog I enjoy has challenged me to respond to a series of questions about books and my reading habits. OK, here goes.

Do you fold the page corner or use a bookmark?

I use a bookmark although it is usually a scrap of paper or whatever is at hand. I have some nice bookmarks but I don't know where they are.

Have you ever received a book as a gift?
Yes, but gift books are often "nice" books that live on the coffee table but don't get read.

Do you read in your bathroom?
No. It is not convenient to read while in the shower.

Have you ever thought about writing a book?
Not seriously. I write poetry and have self published some chap books but very few are worth reading.

What do you think about series of books?
When I was a kid I read all of E. Frank Baum's OZ books - there are a dozen or so. I think I read all of C. S. Forester's Horatio Hornblower series. I have read a lot of John LaCarre's spy books although they are not really a series. I can't imagine a more successful series than Harry Potter. I loved those. I think I read most of John Updike's "Rabbit" books. I read "Ender's Game" and got hooked on Orson Scott Card's "Ender" series and the "Bean" series which followed. They get windy but I was interested in the characters. That's enough.

Is there a book you worship?
Not really. I read the bible regularly but I don't worship it. Maybe I don't understand the question.

Would you like to meet the authors?
It would be interesting to hear some authors talk about their books but I have no burning desire to meet them. Authors, artists, musicians, I am interested in the work, not the person. Maybe if I know too much about the artist it might interfere with my ability to enjoy their work. After watching Tom Cruise jump up and down on Oprah's sofa I have trouble enjoying his movies.

Do you talk about your reading?
My wife and I will talk about things we have read, especially if we both have read it. I enjoy talking about books but do not find many occasions to do so. Not many literary minded friends.

How you choose your books?
At one time I belonged to a mail order book club which resulted in a substantial collection of unread books. I read what is well reviewed and looks interesting, or the next book of an author whose last book I enjoyed, or what is recommended by a friend.

Where are your favorite places to read?
In a comfortable chair or stretched out on my bed.

What is the ideal book?
Some books catch your attention and pull you through to the end. At the end of each chapter is a little hook that compels you to read into the next.

Would prefer to watch TV, play a video game or read a book?
For me, TV is news or a ball game. I have no interest in video games. I like to read books, magazines, and more recently I read a lot of things on the computer. (Blogs, breaking news, blogs)

Do you read while you eat?
If I am eating alone I might read a newspaper or a magazine while I eat, but seldom a book.

Do you listen to music while you read?
Sometimes, if the music is not intrusive. Silent if I am trying to concentrate.

Do you read eBooks?
No. I have an iPhone and can read books on it but do not. Email or short things are ok but not a full length book. I can't imagine buying a Kindle.

Do you like borrowed or purchased books.
It makes much more sense to read a library book than to purchase one. But I more often buy the books I read. For one thing I tend to jump around and my library books usually end up overdue. Besides I am something of a collecter and if I enjoy a book I like to keep it around. A lot of my books come from and the used books are often a bargain.

What is the book that you are reading now and what is next?
For a study group I am reading "The Book of Creation: An Introduction to Celtic Spirituality" by J. Philip Newell, for fun I'm reading "Me Talk Pretty Someday" by David Sedaris. Next I plan to read "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Hosseini. I read a lot of poetry, and just bought "The Shadow of Sirius" by W.S. Merwin.

Have you ever abandoned a book?
Many times. I will give it about 25 pages. If it bores me it is over.

What is the first book you really loved?
When I was very young I remember "Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy", and "Babar" about an old lady with an elephant. There were others but it is hard to remember back that far.

Thank you for staying with me. If you have a blog, consider yourself challenged.


Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

That was most interesting Bill - thanks for sharing the question and answer on books with us.


Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

Just done the puzzle 16.31 mins.
Can you check up on me that I am telling the truth re. the timing or, even, that I have completed the puzzle?


Elleona said... [Reply to comment]


Merci Bill d'avoir rempli le tag ! Je vois que les lecteurs ont bien des points communs à-travers le monde, lol !

Unknown said... [Reply to comment]

Anne - There is nobody keeping score or checking up on you. I have no idea who works the puzzles unless they leave a comment. I'm glad you enjoy the puzzles.

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

I thoroughly enjoy doing them as you know and recognised the picture as one you showed on your site some time ago.


doriane said... [Reply to comment]

forgive me, my english's awfull !!!
I'm really happy, this "tag" is becomed really international ! very intersting for me to discover new blogs...

Micki02 said... [Reply to comment]

I'm in late, but i want to thank you to answer to our game.
It's very kind of you.
Kisses for you and Susan

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

Like you, I have no problem giving up on a book I don't like after a few pages, I like to read in quiet setting, and I'm not dying to meet any author because I value their work but not necessarily their personality.

I fold pages though! :D