Sunday, May 30, 2010

Reading Habits Meme and a couple photos

I'm recuperating from a full week and weekend, which has included Kiddo's high school graduation, gardening, housework, helping husband put down flooring and spending time with Eldest. Boy, have we been busy. I'll post photos of some of the pretties blooming at our house, in the coming days.

When I saw this meme at Gentle Reader's Shelf Life, I thought it would be the perfect filler while I recover from a long week. Normality should resume by Tuesday. Huzzybuns and Kiddo are off work, tomorrow, so I have a feeling blogging won't be on the agenda. Join in on this meme if you feel the urge!

Reading Habits Meme

Do you snack while reading? No, but I always read while snacking!

What is your favourite drink while reading? Water and coffee. I always, always have a drink nearby when I'm reading.

Do you tend to mark your books while you read, or does the idea of writing in books horrify you? I don't even dog-ear unless I think book is so awful it's not worth wasting the time to fetch Post-its, my marking method of choice. If I feel there's a note I must make, I write on my Post-it.

How do you keep your place? Bookmark? Dog-ears? Laying the book open flat?Bookmark. If I can't find a bookmark, I'll grab a receipt or other piece of paper that's flat. There are always receipts nearby. My husband sheds them. I think it's an illness; he can't throw a receipt away.

Fiction, non-fiction or both? Both. I have a mix of both fiction and non-fiction reads balanced almost continuously.

Do you tend to read to the end of a chapter or can you stop anywhere? I can stop anywhere. I don't usually have any trouble remembering what was going on, although if I fall asleep reading I'll sometimes backtrack by a page or two to re-entrench myself in the story, so to speak.

Are you the type of person to throw a book across the room or on the floor if the author irritates you? I mentally throw books, but I've only once physically tossed a book because it made me angry. The author was Nicholas Sparks, if that tells you anything.

If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop and look it up right away? Sometimes, but I don't do so if I can understand the meaning of the word in its context. Instead, I'll go ahead and mark an unfamiliar word and look it up later. I used to keep vocabulary notebooks in which I wrote the word, the book in which I found it, the sentence from the book (to show context) and a definition. Maybe becoming an empty nester will open up time to return to that old habit.

What are you currently reading? I'm reading A Rumor of War by Philip Caputo (a Vietnam soldier's memoir) and A Place for Delta by Melissa Walker (children's). This weekend I put both of those books aside to focus on finishing The Making of a Duchess by Shana Galen (an action-packed historical romance).

What is the last book you bought? Oh, hmm. Actually, I have no idea! I haven't purchased a book in several weeks, although the last book that arrived at my house was Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann. I got it from Paperback Swap.

Do you have a favourite time/place to read? I must read before bed to "wind down" or I can't sleep. Otherwise, I'll read any time I can get away with it, but most of my reading is done at bedtime.

Do you prefer series books or stand-alones? I prefer stand-alone novels. I do occasionally read series books, but I'm not what you could call either faithful or easily addicted to a series.

Is there a specific book or author you find yourself recommending over and over? Haha! You'll know it before I say it, right? Simon Van Booy!! I recommend him so often I'm like a broken record. I also frequently recommend The Count of Monte Cristo, The Three Musketeers, Rebecca, Stand Before Your God (a memoir by Paul Watkins), The Book Thief and Lottery by Pat Wood. Some recent favorites are A Hundred Feet Over Hell by Jim Hooper, The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien, and Postcards from a Dead Girl by Kirk Farber. You should read them, if you haven't.

How do you organise your books? I am not the most organized person on the planet, but favorites and classics go on the "good shelves" and I have a specific shelf for advanced readers (but I don't have many ARCs left and they keep falling over). Whatever I hope to read next -- and I say "hope" because I'm fickle -- goes in a pile beside the bed. Recently, those bedside books have been moving farther away because I keep spilling drinks. Sigh. I need to work on that.

Barbara's additional question: background noise or silence? Silence is preferable and probably one of the reasons I end up reading mostly at bedtime.
Since New Orleans Chris is enjoying his garden and photos of other folks' gardens so much, this photo is mostly for him -- a shot of some of the Roma tomatoes in one of our topsy turvy planters (they're hanging down into the rosemary, as you can see):

Okay. That's it, for now. See you in a day or two! If I can squeeze in the time, I'll write a review on Monday. If not, Tuesday it is. Happy Memorial Day to the Americans!


  1. Because I've been known to knock over full glasses, I have adopted the habit of putting my drinks in old glass bottles of tea or whatever. It's my way of recycling, too, since I no longer use glasses when I'm not eating at a table. A bottle of tea is much safer beside my computer, also.

    I'm happy to see your tomatoes are growing. I now have two tiny green marble-sized tomatoes growing on my topsy turvy planter.

    If you are interested, here's my reading habits meme from a couple of weeks ago:

  2. Bonnie,

    Oddly, I mostly drink out of bottles, but I've still managed to make a mess. It may have to do with the fact that I've recently become anemic. It's turned me into a wimpy klutz.

    Our tomatoes are growing, but I think we might need to move them because there's only so far they can hang with that giant rosemary bush in the way. They're doing great, though. Congrats on your marble-sized tomatoes! Soon, there will be great joy and fresh tomatoes.

    Yep, I'll dash over to read your meme, thanks!

  3. I've seen this meme around the blogosphere and will join in when I can use my computer keyboard instead of the one on my iPad. It's not bad, but it takes longer and I make too many mistake (with the iPad).

  4. Les,

    I've used my iPod online and I know what you mean. It's too big a pain to do anything major. Hope you're having a fabulous time. :)

  5. I might have skipped this meme if I had known there would be reading recommendations. Now I want to check out every one you mentioned, except the ones I've read which I totally agree with.

    Very jealous of those tomatoes. I just planted mine yesterday and something ate the all the leaves on half of them. Grrrr.

  6. Framed,

    Haha. Just call me "little miss troublemaker". :)

    Something ate half the leaves off your tomatoes? Do you have rabbits or deer? We don't have any trouble with animal pests because of the loose dogs in our neighborhood, although we have more than our fair share of 6-legged pests. I hope your tomatoes survive the assault!

  7. I actually read this post last night but was too tired to comment :p I LOVE the pic of your tomatoes!! They look like they're doing fantastic! And I bet they'll taste delicious growing into the rosemary like that.

    I think I did this reading meme a long time ago, but I may steal it and do it again :p It's a fun one! Sounds like we're very similar readers in our habits :p I love the idea of a vocabulary notebook! I'm always looking for new reasons to fill up a notebook. And Oh I forgot about Postcards from a Dead Girl! i really want to read that one!

  8. Chris,

    Oh, heck, I do that all the time and I don't even have an iPhone. LOL It seems like this year I've been more of a lurker than commenter.

    I just went outside to take a picture of a lily we've got blooming and the tomatoes look terrible! I think it's because we keep banking on storms that don't materialize. They need water or they're goners. And, it's not even that hot, yet.

    Yep, you should definitely do this meme, even if you've done it before. It's a fun one. Keeping a vocab notebook is a very enjoyable, totally nerdy thing to do. I still have my old vocab notebooks and even my vocab workbook from high school English. I've been a word freak, forever.

    I think you'd love Postcards from a Dead Girl. It's about a really messed-up guy, but he's messed up for good reason and he eventually gets his act together. It's quirky and sort of bittersweet. :)

  9. What a fun meme. I got some great books this weekend in Malmo, Sweden. Two of Jill Mansell's books. I know how you feel about Jill Mansell.

  10. Nikki,

    Sweden!!! Cool! You are becoming one globe-hopping chick. :) Yep, I love Jill Mansell's books. They're fun, light and sweet - particularly wonderful for when you need an upper.

  11. I just realized that I call the boyfriend 'Hunzybuns', my play on honey buns, and I suppose I stole that right from you! I don't comment as often as I should, but that should tell you that I read your posts plenty! LOL.

  12. Lisa,

    That's so cool. Funny how we pick up those things, isn't it? Since you're here . . . peek at my review of A Hundred Feet Over Hell, if you missed it. And, then you have to tell me if you saw Simon at BEA, this time around. I've heard he met at least two of my blog buddies and one of them says she swooned. ;)

  13. Congrats to kiddo on the graduation! Such an exciting time in life. :) I saw this meme the other day and I fell in love! I'm so curious about other peep's habits (and eager to see how my own stack up!) so this was a great way to get my spy on without being too creepy. ;)

  14. Congratulations to your son on his graduation!

    I'm like you, I must read before going to sleep. And, I do have Postcards from a Dead Girl on my list after reading your review.

  15. Rosemary,

    Thanks! It is definitely an exciting time -- for both of us. Kiddo's excited about college and I'm excited that I'll be an empty nester after so many years of having kids in the house.

    Isn't this meme great? Nothing like a little cheap, voyaristic book fun that won't get you arrested. ;)


    Thank you!

    It's almost a bad thing not to be able to sleep without reading, isn't it? And, yet . . . well, I'm happy. It's really only when someone else insists on turning off a light without reading time that there's trouble.

    Yay! I can't wait to hear what you think of Postcards from a Dead Girl! I thought it was such fun.


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