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Jun 20

Questions and Answers about books

I found this list of questions on a blog that I love (http://beingrudri.com/2014/06/20/some-questions-answers-2/), and since they were good questions, I’m suffering from a bit of writer’s block, and I’m waiting for some bread dough to rise before I can make dinner…

1. Which author’s voice is most compelling to you?

I don’t have an answer for this one.  I like too many different authors to pick just one.  Some writers are so great that I just list them instead of books they’ve written when I’m thinking of my favorites.  JD Robb, Nora Roberts, Anne Rivers Siddens, Robert B. Parker, Maeve Binchy, Tova Mirvis, and Sharon Shinn are some of my go-to fiction writers, but I read a lot more non-fiction these days.

2. Where and how do you get your books – amazon, independent bookstores, library, etc.?

I’m a library girl.  Have to be – there’s no way I’d be able to afford to buy all the books I read.  I can’t justify spending the money on a book I can borrow when it could be going to pay for dance class or a new pair of shoes for a kid.   I love the library, I love wandering around, knowing that I can take out as many books as I want (or up to fifty, and I’ve hit the limit several times).

3. Where and when do you read? How long or how often do you read?

I read all the time.  Just – all the time.  I’ve always got a book with me, usually one in the car, one in the bedroom, one in the bathroom, and a stack on the bookshelf waiting.  I’m a fast reader, but I’m also really good at snatching a few minutes here and a few more there to get it done.  It’s what I do – I don’t knit or crochet (although I try every winter), I’m always behind in folding laundry, and I very reluctantly don’t allow myself to read at stop-lights when I’m driving.

4. What genres interest you most? Why?

When I was younger, I read fiction almost exclusively.  Except for biographies, I’ve always loved biographies.  I remember systematically reading every book on the biography shelf in my junior high library.  I love memoirs, political analysis, books about interfaith and Jewish conversion.  Actually any book about religion is probably one that I’ll pick up and explore.  I’ve read, I think, pretty much every parenting book out there.  Adoption, special needs, I read a lot about childhood anxiety.   I read a lot of blogs too.  Mostly parenting ones, and I tend to gravitate to those that are really honest and sincere.

5. Do you gravitate toward or shy away from difficult and heavy themes, like death, violence, trauma, difficult moral decisions, etc.?

I avoid violent books.   My stepdaughter tried to get me to read Hunger Games, and while I finished the first one, I really hated it and couldn’t get thru the second one in the trilogy.  Maybe it’s more violent suspense, I don’t like to be scared, in life or in literature.

6. Knowing what you know now, what book would you recommend to your 20-something-year-old self? to your 30-something-year-old self?

I think for my twenties – I wish I had read Harold Kushner’s “To Life” – it was one of the books that made me want to be Jewish, and I do wish that I had found it sooner.  I think I was searching for Judaism for a long time before I found it, and that book would have sped up the process.  For my thirties – Lenore Skenazy’s “Free Range Kids.”  That book has probably impacted my parenting more than any other one.

7. What reading rituals, habits, lessons, etc. have you shared with or taught your child?

I have a policy that I’ll always stop what I’m doing and read a book to my kids.  I try to send the message that reading is a vital part of life, and it’s something we do all the time.  I also really encourage them to do it when they’re upset or stressed or anxious.  Reading is my coping mechanism, calms me down faster than anything, and I really would love it if my kids could have that as a tool for making life easier.

8. Is your husband a reader? Does that matter to you?

My husband is definitely a reader.  And it completely matters.  I know there are  many different kinds of intelligence, but I really respect and appreciate intellectualism, and his intelligence is one of my favorite things about my husband.  He reads on-line mostly – but I get books for him at the library and recommend them to him.   He’s much more into economics blogs than I am, but we both read all the time.

9. Have you ever belonged to a book club? If so, what was that experience like?

I haven’t.  I’ve been to a few meetings, but I’m greedy – I don’t like sharing books.  Not the physical book – as an active library patron, I’m used to not owning books.  But I don’t like sharing the experience of reading, if that makes sense.  It’s too private, somehow.  It’s hard to explain, but it’s hard for me to discuss a book, because my experience of reading it is mine.

10. What are you most excited to read from your TBR pile this summer?

I actually don’t have a TBR pile.  I go to the library once every few weeks and stock up – and I’m on my last book.  Planning on going to the library tomorrow morning – I like to go without kids when I’m looking for books for me, that way I can wander to my heart’s content.

11. Do you own and collect books, or do you prefer not to have them pile up in your home?

I would love to own and collect – but I really can’t justify the money or the space with three active kids who tend to be hoarders.


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