Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Musings: A To Z Bookish Survey

This has been going the rounds (you can play at home, too).

Author you’ve read the most books from:
If I include all time records from my pre-Goodreads days, probably Agatha Christie or Georgette Heyer, the only authors where I've attempted to work through their entire bibliography. In recent times? Michael J Sullivan is the most I’ve read under one name, but Daniel Abraham takes the prize by writing under three pseudonyms in three genres.

Best Sequel Ever:
Hmm, how are we defining a sequel? I can’t think of any true sequel that I’ve read (as opposed to something that was just part of a series), so I’ll nominate a prequel instead: Michael J Sullivan’s The Crown Tower.

Currently Reading:
Blood and Betrayal by Lindsay Buroker (see J below). Also working slowly through the Unfettered anthology.

Drink of Choice While Reading:
Mostly it's orange and mango juice diluted with sparkling mineral water, a habit acquired on holiday in New Zealand, where they sell pre-mixed bottles of the stuff. If I get the chance to read in the evening, mine's a single malt whisky with a little water on the side, thanks. Bowmore or Lagavulin, for preference.

E-reader or physical book?
What's a physical book??? Seriously, I don't read dead tree books any more. I read on my Kindle Paperwhite or else on computer, tablet or phone.

Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School:
You're joking. No one writes books about the sort of bloke I'd have actually dated. Book characters have to have personalities, for a start. Now if you'd asked who I'd like to have dated - easy peasy, Ruuel from Andrea K Höst's Touchstone trilogy was the last fictional character I had the hots for.

Glad You Gave this Book a Chance:
The Demon of Cliffside by Nathan Fierro, one of those ‘my mate wrote a book’ recommendations on Reddit, which turned out to be one of the most original books I’d ever read.

Hidden Gem Book:
The Light of Kerrindryr by H Anthe Davis. The author approached me to ask about a review or I’d never have heard of it, and I was just blown away by it.

Important Moment in Your Reading Life:
First one: reading Lord of the Rings for the first time, in hardback with those cute little fold-out maps stuck inside the back cover. Second one: reading Andrea K Höst’s Medair duology and realising that yes, fantasy can have female characters every bit as active, sensible and intelligent as men (that is, normal) and societies where women are treated the same way as men. Everything I’ve read since has been judged through that lens.

Just Finished:
Conspiracy by Lindsay Buroker. On no, a cliffhanger ending...! See C above.

Kind of Books You Won’t Read:
Zombies and other mindless unkillable things. Because what’s the point of mindless things?

Longest Book I’ve Read:
Dunno. Probably Lord of the Rings. A Dance With Dragons is pretty huge too.

Major Book Hangover Because Of:
Mark Lawrence’s Broken Empire trilogy. Had to read two books in different genres before I could even contemplate reading fantasy again. Still awed by it.

Number of Bookcases You Own:
Five with my books in them, plus a loft full of boxes of books.

One Book You Have Read Multiple Times:
The Lord of the Rings. At one time I reread it every year, then lapsed, then restarted before the films came out.

Preferred Place to Read:
Sitting in bed, but I don’t get the chance very often. Otherwise, at my desk, on the floor in front of the fire, on buses/trains/planes, anywhere I can convince myself there’s nothing else I ought to be doing.

Quote That Inspires/Gives the Feels:
Inspires? This one from F W Wallace in Stormfront:
“The monsters are gone."
"Really?" Doubtful.
"I killed the monsters. That's what fathers do.”

But for fun, I like this one, by Michael J Sullivan in The Crown Conspiracy (the guy just has the best sense of humour):
“I just want to say, for the record, as far as Royal protectors go, you're not very good."
"It's my first day," Royce replied dryly.
"And already I am trapped in a timeless prison. I shudder to think what might have happened if you had a whole week.”

Reading Regret:
Not liking Daughter of the Empire by Raymond Feist and Janny Wurtz. I’ve seen Janny on Goodreads, and she’s such a lovely lady, I so badly wanted to like the book, but I just hated the main character.

Series You Started and Need to Finish:
Loads. I have a whole shelf on Goodreads for continuations of series I’ve started, books I own but just haven’t got round to. Patrick Rothfuss. Ben Aaronovitch. Martha Wells’ Raksura series. Robin Hobbs’ Farseer trilogy (these are so big, my heart sinks just thinking about them).

Three of Your All Time Favorite Books:
Can I have complete series? The Long Price Quartet by Daniel Abraham. The Broken Empire trilogy by Mark Lawrence. The Touchstone trilogy by Andrea K Höst. Or maybe her Medair duology. No, no, The Champion of the Rose. Dammit, do I have to pick just three?

Unapologetic Fan Girl For:
Daniel Abraham, in all his disguises. And Andrea K Höst.

Very Excited For This Release:
The next book in Daniel Abraham’s Dagger and Coin series.

Worst Bookish Habit:
In my dead tree book days, I was a spine-breaker, which my daughter tells me is the most heinous of crimes. Now the worst thing I can do is drop my Kindle (whereupon I switch to backup Kindle).

X Marks the Spot: Start At Top Left and Pick the 27th Book on Your Shelf:
Calibre is my virtual bookcase now, so I alphabetised my collection (which I used to do with my real books) by author name, and the 27th book is Murder on the Mind by L L Bartlett, a 4* mystery which was free! Yay for free books!

Your Latest Book Purchase:
Darkness Rising, Book 4: Loss by Ross M Kitson, one of my favourite indie authors.

Zzz-snatcher Book:
Daniel Abraham’s Long Price Quartet. The final part kept me up till 3am, then I got up again at 7am, grainy-eyed, to carry on. Got nothing else done that day.

Here are some others:
On starships and dragonwings


  1. I have been working on this slowly as well. Should be posted this weekend .

    And now that I know you are a spine breaker I wont be loaning you my books. BAD!

  2. Thanks for the little plug there. I'm trying not to squeal every time you mention my book, or visit my blog, or...or...! But it's difficult.

    1. You're welcome. I just wish I had a bigger audience to sing the book's praises to. I mentioned it over on the Mythic Scribes forum, too. Dammit, everyone should read it! It should be in the bestseller charts, if there were any justice.