Saturday, October 24, 2009

Book & more books

Today was GORGEOUS; I spent much of it outside, doing some pruning & fall cleaning. Then going thru my blog roll, to do some pruning of inactive blogs, I stopped by some I LOVE, but hadn't visited for quite awhile.
I found this set of questions about reading habits & books over @ Serena's, & snagged it from her (she'd picked it up from Jennifer, invited us to play if we wanted! The quote above is a wee hand bound booklet, made by a local bookbinder/artist. It's tucked to the L of the blue books on the top shelf of the photo at the bottom of the blog (did you follow that??) cunningly placed on top of some of the apron 'pieces'

On to the questions:

Do you snack while you read? I often eat a meal with book in hand. I try not to get food on the book, though, & use cloth napkins.

Do you tend to mark your books as you read them, or does the idea of writing on your books horrify you? I do with some of my book group books - usually just star a passage (in pencil!) or maybe write a few words. I rarely highlight, but sometimes did in college. Oh, & then there are things I disagree with - I may note my opinion (even in a Library book, shame!)

How do you keep your place while reading a book? Bookmark? Dog ears? Leaving the book open flat? Usually a bookmark but, if I don't have a bookmark readily available, I will use scrap paper, gift cards, business cards, a bit of fabric, piece of yarn, & occ. leave it open ..... I'm definitely not one for dog-earing a book.

Fiction, Non-Fiction or both? Both. I adore non-fiction books on metaphysics, esoteric, self-help, nutrition, spirituality (inc. several compilations of prayers, & books on various traditions: Wicca, Buddhism, several Bibles, the tall old book on this tall living room shelf is Unity's 'Metaphysical Bible Dictionary, pub in 1931 that belonged to former hubby's grandmother), also Native American & NW history, & autobiographies or personalized non-fiction. I want to know something about the real person who wrote for me.
I also adore fiction - so many kinds! Fantasy, (I ordered Lord of the Rings while I was in HS) historic fiction, young adult books, mysteries - esp ones that somehow tap real events or issues (Barbara Coel - Arapaho, Rhys Bowen - Molly Murphy (turn of the century Irish detective) Alexander McCall Smith, etc), Mary Stewart, & anything by Barbara Kingsolver or Ursula LeGuin (whom I've seen/heard 3 times) & local authors! & if there's a harper in a book, so much the better! I'm always on the lookout for new books (or series!) about harps & harpers . . .
My friend Ellie Gunn just finished her first book, about a Scottish midwife during the time of the Highland clearances, One Handful of Earth. Well worth a read!
I love meeting authors, & hearing them read their own work. Our local bookstore (which sells new & used) does a great job with having several authors speak each month.

& then there are all those necessary reference books: HERBs, gardening, Astrology, flower essences, cookbooks, natural health, I Ching & Tarot, relationship, astrology, Feng Shui, Tai Chi, Reiki; & the music books (mostly harp, but some piano, some seasonal, & of course a dictionary & thesarus.

Are you a person who tends to read to the end of chapters, or are you able to put a book down at any point? I usually read to the end of chapters, but can put it down if I need to. & I can find my place fairly quickly, if I haven't marked it.

If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop to look it up right away?
Rarely - I generally get meaning from the context of the words around it. I may look it up later.
An aside: I'm dyslexic, but it mostly shows up in spelling, as my vocabulary is quite large, & if I know a word, I recognize it. I will often mispronounce a longer or unusual proper name, & have to make myself break it down & sound it out. I never 'knew,' until we tagged my daughter in about the 7th grade! I tend to scramble letters at the end of a word I don't know, & spell MUCH BETTER with a keyboard than I ever did with just a typewriter. I do appreciate spell check, but don't often use it (love that backspace key!) & I can text :)

What are you currently reading? I just finished 'Eye of Jade' - a poignant new mystery by Diane Wei Liang, who was in a Chinese labor camp (as a child!) during the cultural revolution. There were some of those - oh! I know what that means - words, & I would be delighted by images - old men with bird cages joining the AM Tai Chi (a friend who teaches tai chi & visited China described seeing those gentlemen SWINGING their bird cages!) & Roger Zelazny's book two of '9 Princes in Amber' series (sporadically)
My book club books: 'My Stroke of Insight' (Jill Bolte Taylor) 'the Joy Diet' (on-line group). Third Street books gives me their 10% Book club discount for the on-line group, too!

What is the last book you bought? A dear little book on Buddhism for 50c - from the 'Friends of the Library' rack in our Library lobby. (a librarian friend commented on 'feeding' OUR book habits, & 'maybe we should sell bookshelves, too?' That evening my son-in law was asking my daughter if they could give one of the girls' bookshelves to one of his employees - my dau & I said "NO!!!" in unison!)
I have to watch my book buying, Powells on-line (free shipping with $50 order!) & Amazon are particularly addictive. I'm working on clearing clutter (get rid of any books??) & paring down . . . do I really need more books?

Are you the type of person who can only read one book at a time or can you read more than one at a time? I usually have at least two or three books on the go.

Do you prefer series or stand alone books? I enjoy both. I love some of the mystery series, Carey's Kushiel series, Roger Zelazny's Amber, Gael Baudino's Strands, the Lord of the Rings, C S Lewis' Narnia, George McDonald's Princess books, Earthsea, Harry Potter (variations on the same theme, by the way - the education of a young wizard), Charles de Lint . . .
There are some authors that I find redundant, so one or two of their books are more than enough!

Is there a specific book or author that you find yourself recommending over and over? I often recommend something I've just read & enjoyed! If folks play the harp, I recommend Gael Baudino, (esp. 'Gossamer Axe') for her sense of magic & music is unparalleled! & Porter's 'Just David' is such a classic! (she wrote Pollyanna - this is equally poignant & sweet - David plays the violin!) & for those ready for some life changing info - Bruce Fife's 'The Coconut Oil Miracle.'

Do you have a library card, & lend or borrow books? Oh, yes! I went with my mom regularly when I was a child, studied in the library in college, & had town & college library cards several times!
My mom often said we came from a line of 'teachers, preachers & farmers' - she could remember her dad reading 'GWTW' (Gone with the wind) when it first came out, sitting in a rocking chair with the tears running down his face!
I work just across the street from our library - so usually have 4-10 or so checked out at a time (3 weeks, & I can renew online) Eye of Jade is a library book.
I also borrow books from friends, & lend some books out. I occ. get more than one copy of a book, or have to replace one that's been lent. When I teach Reiki, I take a stack of books for folks to choose from, & usually get them back :)

How do you organize your books? (By genre, title, author’s last name, etc.?) Hmm - organize??
Well, I group some books by size (height of book & shelf) if they're large they have to be on a taller shelf, (or flat or on their sides) & if they're tiny, they can fit on a very short one. I do have themes & group things, but some fiction is mixed with non-fiction; & there are never enough shelves, & some are in the garage . . . (as are some of my daughter's books, hence her dismay at the thought of having one less shelf)
I am a Virgo & do pretty much know what's where - but it's not a system anyone else would necessarily understand!
I immediately thought of the time 'Monni' was cleaning & organized my mother-in law Dordy's books by colour - Dordy was appalled - & I think it took quite awhile for her to find anything!
The top shelf has a couple of books by Matthew Fox & one by Thich Nhat Hanh, a couple on cleaning & organization, then a bunch of cook books & ah herb ref. book. The one with the (torn) green dust jacket on the lower shelf, Oregon Geographic Names, has a blurb about my grandpa & his E. Oregon farm. Quite a hodge-podge on that shelf, N A art, flower essences, a Japanese fold book, several on healing, the tall ones on end . . .

-- this was fun! I do love books & reading.
I grew up on books, & library card from a young age. Recently Kayleen (4) & I were looking at 'Winnie The Pooh' which I'd drawn in (orange crayon) before I was three. My mama cried, as I'd just gotten the 4 book set in hardback - one of the few 'nice' books I owned! I hid behind the couch to do the drawing, . . . Kayleen was impressed!


Tori said...

Books are addicting, plain and simple. I don't understand the people I meet who say "I've never read a book all the way through before." They don't know what they're missing out on!

Dia said...

Isn't it amazing! My daughter listens to books on CD quite a bit, as she's more dyslexic than me, & a slow reader - that I can understand!