I’ve been seeing this tag around and thought it looked like fun. If you’ve done it, leave a link in the comments so I can see your answers.
Bookish Questions Tag
1. What book is on your nightstand now?
Reality Boy – A.S. King
Gerald Faust knows exactly when he started feeling angry: the day his mother invited a reality television crew into his five-year-old life. Twelve years later, he’s still haunted by his rage-filled youth—which the entire world got to watch from every imaginable angle—and his anger issues have resulted in violent outbursts, zero friends, and clueless adults dumping him in the special education room at school.
Nothing is ever going to change. No one cares that he’s tried to learn to control himself, and the girl he likes has no idea who he really is. Everyone’s just waiting for him to snap . . . and he’s starting to feel dangerously close to doing just that.
2. What was the last truly great book you read?
This Side of Providence – Rachel M. Harper
Arcelia Perez fled Puerto Rico to escape a failed marriage and a history of abuse, but instead of finding her piece of the American dream, she ends up on the wrong side of Providence. With three young children, Arcelia follows a rocky path that ultimately leads to prison and an agonizing drug withdrawal. But her real challenge comes when she’s released and must figure out how to stay clean and reunite the family that has unraveled in her absence.
Through rotating narrators, we hear from the characters whose lives and futures are inextricably linked with Arcelia’s own uncertain fate: her charming, street-savvy son, Cristo, and brilliant daughter Luz; their idealistic teacher, Miss Valentín, who battles her own demons; and the enigmatic Snowman, her landlord and confidante.
3. If you could meet any writer—dead or alive—who would it be? What would you want to know?
I honestly don’t think I ever want to meet any of my favorite writers. I’d probably panic and go silent and make myself look like an idiot. If I somehow acquired the magic ability to act like a normal human, I’d want to meet Stephen King. I’d tell him that his books changed my life. (I wrote about that in this post.) I’d ask him how he handles the pressure of being a successful author. Readers have certain expectations for his books, and I wonder if he feels any pressure to meet those expectations.
4. What books might we be surprised to find on your shelves?
I’m not sure. My reading tastes are pretty diverse, and I’m currently working on my third literature degree. I have a massive assortment of books. Maybe you’d be surprised that I own the whole Twilight series? I don’t like the books because Edward is an abusive, creepy, reanimated corpse, but I own them, and I’ve read them.
5. How do you organize your personal library?
Personal libraries are supposed to be organized? “Organized” is not a word that can be used to describe my shelves. I cram books wherever I can because I’m in denial that I need more shelves.
My cult books have their own shelves. My unread books have a shelf. Some of my shelves are organized by color or size. All of the shelves have random books stuck wherever they fit.
6. What book have you always meant to read and haven’t gotten around to yet? Anything you feel embarrassed never to have read?
My knowledge of mythology and fairytales is embarrassingly terrible. I somehow missed out on a bunch of stories that everybody seems to know. I need to correct this. Any book recommendations?
7. What book did you feel you were supposed to like but didn’t? Do you remember the last book you put down without finishing?
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher sounds like my kind of book, but I absolutely loathed it. I’ve never hated a book as much as I hate that one. One of the narrators is a psychopath, and I felt like the author was trying really hard to manipulate me into feeling sorry for her. It didn’t work.
The last book I put down without finishing was Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. The writing style felt amateurish, and I couldn’t get interested in the story.
8. What kinds of stories are you drawn to? Any you stay clear of?
I’m drawn to YA “problem novels,” literary fiction, experimental, classics, horror, dystopian, historical fiction/nonfiction, short story collections, magical realism, wilderness survival, and anything about non-mainstream religions.
I stay clear of romance, erotica, “fluffy” books, chick-lit, spiritual, and most types of fantasy.
Basically, I like my books dark. If it’s twisted, I want to read it. If a book sounds like everybody will get a happy ending, I run the opposite direction.
9. If you could require the president to read one particular book, what would it be?
Wow, this is hard. I feel like most politicians are so set in their ways that a book won’t change anything. I think all American leaders should read the Harry Potter series because it embodies the values of a lot of the younger people in this country. American leaders also need to read the Quran. There seems to be a lot of misinformation about what that book says and doesn’t say.
10. What do you plan to read next?
The Stepford Wives – Ira Levin
For Joanna, her husband, Walter, and their children, the move to beautiful Stepford seems almost too good to be true. It is. For behind the town's idyllic facade lies a terrible secret—a secret so shattering that no one who encounters it will ever be the same.