1. Which book has been on your shelves the longest?
One of the two children’s books I’ve kept from childhood. Lightning Fred by Dick King Smith I won for something – no idea what. And The Hermit and The Bear by John Yeoman was given to me by the staff of my primary school when I had my last surgery – I think that would have been about 1990. The book has “To Emma, wishing you a quick recovery (name of my school) staff” in it but no date. Looking at the type of books they are I suspect Lightning Fred is the older.
2. What is your current read, your last read and the book you’ll read next?
Currently I’m reading Knit Two by Kate Jacobs (a Friday Night Knitting Club book) but I’ll probably finish that today, got about 80 pages left.
The last book I read was Peter Duck by Arthur Ransome – I’m slowly working my way through the Swallows and Amazons series for the first time.
Next is probably Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks but it might be War of The Worlds by HG Wells, I’m not sure.
3. What book did everyone like and you hated?
Either The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Nightime which I knew I would probably like if I could get anywhere with it but I just couldn’t. Or We Need To Talk About Kevin which did the rounds of people I volunteer with and by the time I got the copy I’d heard so much about how great it was it did not live up to expectations and I abandoned about 80 pages in.
4. Which book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t?
Cryptonomicon. It’s the sort of book I like (genre wise) and it was on a list of books I was picking from so I bought it but beyond the first few pages I never actually read it.
5. Which book are you saving for “retirement?”
I don’t like to wait for things, life is too short.
6. Last page: read it first or wait till the end?
I always look at the last page to see how many books it has but try not to read anything more than the page number.
7. Acknowledgements: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside?
it’s interesting but I only read them quickly
8. Which book character would you switch places with?
None really. Elizabeth Bennett from Pride and Prejudice is one of my favourite characters but I like my life as it is.
9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time)?
I like re-reading old Chalet School books or similar ones because it reminds me of how much I loved them as a child (and still do) and of times when things were simpler and life was easier. They’re pure escapism for me.
10. Name a book you acquired in some interesting way.
Walking on Water by Geoff Holt. I went to take part in a sailing regatta and came away without having actually done any sailing but having listened to a very interesting talk by him and bought a signed copy of his book (he wrote “Emma, no excuses! Geoff, Farmoor 09”)
11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person?
I adore giving books as presents mostly because I think reading is so important and I love spending time in bookshops
12. Which book has been with you to the most places?
Probably my copy of Q Squared by Peter David (it’s a Star Trek: The Next Generation book). Whenever I’ve had to cull books or chose some to leave behind before moving to or from uni or between flats since I left uni, its been a must have. Haven’t read it for years tho.
13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad ten years later?
I can’t remember any required reading at school. I know there was some but other than MacBeth and Romeo and Juliet I can’t remeber what it was – it was some kind of anthology made especially for school rather than the usual required books.
14. What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book?
random scribbled notes
15. Used or brand new?
I love getting new books, I love the whole experience and especially the way they smell. But one of my goals is to try and spend less money on new books. So this year I have been getting a lot of books from Read It Swap It
16. Stephen King: Literary genius or opiate of the masses?
I’m not into horror so I’ve never read anything. I suspect it probably doesn’t live up to the hype, I find that a lot when I here people go on about writers before I read them.
17. Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book?
Ella Enchanted. I love the film and liked the book but the film was better. However I didn’t know there was a book till the end of the film so it might be different if I’d read it first.
18. Conversely, which book should NEVER have been introduced to celluloid?
I really like the Harry Potter films. But only if you take them as completely separate from the books.
19. Have you ever read a book that’s made you hungry, cookbooks being excluded from this question?
Chocolat by Joanne Harris made me crave chocolate even more than usual.
20. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take?
I’ll happily take book advice from anyone but depending on the books affects whether I’ll go back for more advice.