Haven't been blogging all that long so imagine my surprise that I've been nominated for a Liebster Blog Award...twice! So many thanks to Jordan @ Jordan's Reading Nook and Cristyn @ The Book Cafe. It's really cool that you guys throught to include me.
Rules of the Liebster Blog Award:
1. Tell 11 things about yourself.
2. Answer 11 questions from the blogger who nominated you.
3. Post 11 questions for those who will be nominated by you to answer.
4. Nominate 11 bloggers with less than 200 followers.
5. Get in contact with those 11 bloggers in order to inform them that you nominated them.
Eleven things you now know about me:
1. I love sports. Soccer, football, hockey, diving, gymnastics... It's an eclectic bunch for sure, but I love them all.
2. I love flavored carbonated water. I'm cutting down on soda so this stuff is like drugs for me.
3. I collect pressed pennies from amusement parks and touristy hot spots. Cheapest souveniers you'll ever find.
4. I participated in marching band for eight years and staffed for my high school for an additional two.
5. I hate To Kill a Mockingbird. I know it's crazy, but I just don't dig Harper Lee's style. Also William Faulkner sucks. TKAM and As I Lay Dying were probably the worst books I ever had to read for school, and as an English major in college, I've had to read a lot.
6. I love celebrity gossip.
7. I will travel hours to go to book signings. So far I've met: Meg Cabot, Cassie Clare, Richelle Mead, Elizabeth Eulberg, Jackson Pearce, and Jen Calonita. Upcoming author signings include: Veronica Rossi, Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, Tahereh Mafi, Tera Lynn Childs, Kiersten White, and Jennifer Echols. It's totally worth it to drive to a different state if I have to just to have a few minutes with a writer I admire.
8. I dip cheetos into chocolate pudding. Yeah, it sounds disgusting but somehow 8-year-old me discovered cheesy chocolate is somehow crazy delicious. Or maybe it's chocolatey cheese...
9. By day I work in a children's science museum exploding cokes with mentos and freezing stuff in liquid nitrogen.
10. Movie scores are my favorite kind of music. Not just the soundtracks with your favorite artists, but the music composed for the film. James Newton Howard (The Village, Dinosaur, Peter Pan, The Hunger Games) is my current favorite.
11. I'm addicted to Big Bang Theory. I seriously loves me some Sheldon. I have shirts. I have the calendar. I have all the seasons. I have a significant number of episodes memorized. I have a roommate agreement and a spot on the couch. Bazinga!
1. Who is your book boyfriend, and why? As with all of us ya lovers, this is a tough question. I have so many and for so many different reasons: Fred Weasley and Emmett Cullen for their humor; Adam Vader for his sense of adventure; Dimitri Belikov for his protective nature; Adrian Ivashkov for his passion (yeah, I love them both); Will Herondale for his vulnerability; etc etc. I will say that I do tend to go for the funny guys above all else.
2. What do you look for in a 5 star book? Look, my system isn't perfect. It's as flawed and biased as I am. If I love the author super-a-whole-lot, I'm probably going to give 5 stars unless there's a book that I don't consider up to their usual standards (see: Jennifer Echols, Meg Cabot, Richelle Mead). Sometimes I rate 5 stars because I just loved how creative a story was, even if the writing wasn't fantastic. Sometimes I rate highly because the characters are so wonderful and realistic. Sometimes I rate high because how much I was drawn into the story. Big things or small things can nudge a book up or down stars. It can be very subtle or pretty obvious. One thing that isn't going to give someone high marks for sure is sloppy grammar and spelling. I find copy mistakes like that too distracting because instead of getting involved in the story, I'm busy correcting all the errors.
3. Do you judge a book by its cover? Absolutely! If I think a cover is cool, I'll put it on my to-read list. It may take me a while to get to it if I found it on Goodreads, but sometimes I'll do it at the library and the effect is more immediate. That's how I discovered Across the Universe by Beth Revis. Ironically, I loved the covers for Across the Universe and A Million Suns, but, like most fans, I was super disappointed with Shades of Earth. I think you have to stick with what works. But please, no more pretty girls in dress A) standing in the woods, B) swimming, or C) some other wreck-the-dress kind of activity. Let's get creative here!
4. What are your reading habits? I can read several books at one time and keep them straight. I read fast enough that I can read one good-sized novel a day, but I realized last year that some things weren't always sticking when I read that fast so I've forced myself to slow down. I typically read late at night when I'm ready to go to bed. I also typically take a book everywhere I go, just in case I get some down time.
5. Do you speak any other language besides English? Sadly, no. I took 2 semesters of Latin in high school, which helps me piece through other languages when I read them, and 3 semesters of Italian in college, but I am not fluent at all. This is a problem as right now I find myself reading lots of ya that's set in Europe.
6. What is your view on dog-earring a page to "mark your spot" in a book? I have one bookmark. Currently it is in use in my copy of Goliath (Leviathan #3), and though I've read other books more recently, I just remember those pages by heart. Keeping track on goodreads helps, but I've always had a knack for knowing where I am. I never dog-ear, except right now I have one as I wanted to remember a quote.
7. Do you mind if one of the books in your series collection is in paperback, and the rest are in hardcover? Yes, very much. I have been known to sell copies of the unmatching ones just to go buy the "correct" format. I'm pretty OCD when it comes to my books. I like for them to match. This is another reason why I hate when book covers change: The Princess Diaries, Vampire Academy, Shatter Me, Across the Universe... Darn you, publishers! I want my bookshelf to match itself!
8. Do you draft your blog posts? You bet. I'm trying to do this more so that I can post more. I work and it's been really tough to read and update the blog the last few weeks. I'm working on getting some drafts done so I can just publish a post with minimal hassle. This is going to help a lot as I start doing my own memes!
9. Are you a Potterhead? Of course! October 1999: my mom, a teacher, hands me a book as we are waiting at an airport gate for a flight to Washington DC. I read the first chapter and hated it. Who are these horrible Dursley people? Why are their weird people in robes? What's a Dumbledore? *super confused* December 1999: My aunt, a bookstore employee, gifts me this "terrible" book that I didn't like. Wanting to give it an honest go, as it was a Christmas present, I started to read again, but I skipped the first chapter this time. I was hooked. For my birthday, I received CoS and PoA. A couple years later, I got GoF on release day. Each year was filled with rereads and enws of upcoming novels. I was 11 the first time I met Harry Potter, and it seemed like we grew up together. Quite literally as I was almost always the same age as Harry in the books. JKR changed my life. I'd always been a reader, but not like I am now. I have her--and Harry--to thank for that.
10. Ebook or printed copy, and why? Printed copy. I just got a tablet so I have the ability to read ebooks now (before I just used my computer) and I do. I love reading all the novellas and extras on it. I'll even check books out from the library if I can't get a print copy. However, print will always be my first choice. First, I love that it's not going to ruin my eyes like looking on a lit up computer or tablet screen will. Second, I never need a battery to run it so I'm not constantly looking for an outlet. Third, there is something about a paper book so tied to my reading experience, so valuable to my memories of reading throughout my life that I can't imagine never having a physical copy again. Maybe it's the smell of a new book or the smell of an old favorite. Maybe it's the years-old stains on the pages from snacks and meals eaten at a table with a book weighted down by a cereal box. Maybe it's the smooth feel of the paper or the weight of a novel carried in my hand as I tried to do everything one-handed. I don't know what it is, but I'll only do ebooks for those I can't get otherwise.
11. Series or standalone novel, and why? Both. I've been collecting Nancy Drew and Baby-Sitters Club novels since I was in the single digits. There's something great about having a massive series like that with the same characters going on different adventures. I also love shorter series driven by several small arcs and (usually) one bigger one, like Vampire Academy or The Mortal Instruments. But then, there are also great standalones. Sometimes they can be just as fulfilling and satisfying as a series. Jennifer echols has a WONDERFUL blog post about this. You should definitely check it out. The best of two worlds are companion novels. I like seeing hints of old favorite characters but getting to know new ones as well.
1. Who's your favorite male and female fictional character? Why? Favorite female protagonist is probably Rose Hathaway. That girl is a complete badass, but she's also a great friend. She's got a kind of difficult life, but she doesn't shy away from the bad stuff. She meets them head on. I wish I had that kind of bravery. She makes difficult decisions. She's a fighter, but I also love how caring and loving she is as well. She's passionate. She's fierce. She's loyal. She's...well, a vampire-hunting grade-A bamf. Favorite male character.... Hmmm... I have to pick? Really? That's mean of you. Well, I'm going to say Neville Longbottom. I knew that he was important and special. I don't know why. I just had a feeling. Maybe it was all the times JKR basically shoved his and Harry's background in our faces. Maybe it was all the times he did something amazing, like stand up to the trio. I don't know. Neville is also a grade-A bamf, and I love him. Also, Matthew Lewis is hot. :P
2. If someone could grant you ONE wish, what would you wish for and why? Kellan Lutz, in my room, always. :D Seriously, though, I think I'd ask for an around-the-world kind of trip. Like epic journey kind of trip where I visit all these wonderful places I read about and have enough time to do all the touristy stuff but also experience "real" life as well. On my to-visit list: Italy (again), France, England, Scotland, Ireland, Germany, India, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Hawaii, Alaska, etc.
3. When did you start blogging, and what made you do it? I actually started my blog back in August of 2011, but I let it slip and never updated it. I re-started in December because of a contest, but it's something I've wanted to do for a while. I love books. I love recommending them. And to be honest, I love having an opportunity to get review copies and arcs. :)
4. If you had the chance to meet and talk to a fictional character, who would it be and why?
Rose Hathaway, for reasons previously mentioned, and probably Adrian Ivashkov. He makes me swoon.
5. YA movie adaptations - Like it or hate it? Why? That depends on how true the adaptation is. Eragon made me so sad that I have to pretend it's a different story to make it through the movie. The Lord of the Rings (not ya, but go with me here) is as true to the source material as you can get in 12+ hours. Harry Potter is somewhere in the middle; PoA made me want to die as it's my favorite of the seven and probably my least favorite movie. Twilight was okay-ish, but I hated that Edward didn't have a sense of humor in the movies. However, New Moon was my least favorite book, and I actually really enjoyed the movie. Hunger Games was pretty decent. It really depends on so many things: author participation, the script, the director's vision, the cast, the presence or absense of blue gels placed over the camera lense (freaking Catherine Hardwicke and her stupid cinematographer!), the presence or absence of shaky cam (freaking Gary Ross!). As long as ya movies are being made, I'll watch them, but a second viewing is definitely conditional on how much I liked the interpretation.
6. Top 5 most charming male fictional characters. ADRIAN. IVASHKOV. Good heavens that man makes me flushed and he's NOT EVEN REAL. The Cassie Clare tag team of Jace Wayland-Morgenstern-Herondale-Lightwood and his great-great-something William Herondale. Jesse/Hector de Silva from Meg Cabot's amazing Mediator series (seventh book, WHAT?! Been waiting a while for THAT news!). And even though he's so much younger than I am so it's totally not a romantic kind of feeling I get about him, Artemis Fowl. That kid could charm the pocket off a kangaroo.
7. Most emotional book you've read? John Green really gets the waterworks going, doesn't he? The Fault in Our Stars made me a teary, snotty mess. Deathly Hallows was pretty bad. I usually zipped through HP novels quickly, but that one required several breaks. Shadow Kiss tore my heart out. Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler, Invincible Summer by Hannah Moskowitz and My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick are some more tear-jerkers, but they're all SO worth it. I think that if a book forces me to feel really intense emotions, enough that I'm crying, it's totally doing it's job as a book, you know?
8. Cliffhangers, love 'em or hate 'em? So long as they make sense and I know there will be resolution, I'm okay with them. If you're like Christopher Paolini and you're too lazy to put answers in your 800+ page FINAL novel, I'll want to shove those 800+ pages straight down your throat for making me wait that long AND doing a shoddy job of cleaning up your own literary mess.
9. Favorite genre to read and review? So long as it's ya, I'll read it. My room and by TBR list are full of ya books, and they're all different kinds. If I really have to pick, probably paranormal AND contemporary romance.
10. Author you would love to interview and why? ALL OF THEM, though my one-author-only pick is probably Meg Cabot. Her inner vocie that comes out in her novels is scarily similar to my own. I'd like to sit down and discuss these voices and her yummy boy characters--Jesse, Paul, Chris, Michael, etc.
11. Your most anticipated book of 2013? Several. Everything by Jennifer Echols, including her upcoming adult novels. The Indigo Spell is one. Detergent aka Divergent 3. XVI 3. Isla and the Happily Ever After. The Eternity Cure. Gallagher Girls 6. The Girl with the Iron Touch. Belles 3. "Die for Her" and If I Should Die. Things I Can't Forget. Sarah Ockler and Elizabeth Eulberg's new novels.
1. Which literary character would you most like to live a day in the life of?
2. Which character do you love to hate?
3. What book do you wish you'd written and why?
4. Which would you pick: For the rest of your life, you can either reread the books you've already read or only read new books. Why?
5. Do you read in complete silence or do you like music/tv/movies playing while you read?
6. Which book(s) do you most want to see be made into a movie or tv show?
7. What standalone novel or completed series do you wish had had more sequels?
8. Do you read novels all at once when you get them or do you like to savor the experience?
9. What is your go-to novel when you're having a bad day? Why?
10. Do you give people you meet in the library/bookstore suggestions?
11. How do you primarily obtain books you review: borrow from library, borrow from friends, buy them, or review copies?
Bloggers I'm tagging:
1. Ramblings Of A Diva Booknerd
2. A Secret Book Affair
3. Many Books, Many Lives
4. Booklok Coffee
5. Read My Breath Away
To celebrate my nomination, I've decided to have my first blog giveaway! Be sure to check back tomorrow for the details because it's going to be amazing! :)