Saturday, August 20, 2016



This is a Q&A feature. Sometimes it will be blogger interviews and sometimes authors. Other times it might be me asking my sister what she thought about a book series, or a chat with another blogger, or two, about something bookly.
At this point in time I am focusing my blogger interviews on people who take the time to either meaningfully reply to my comments on their blog, or who leave meaningful, conversational comments on mine; especially those who don't have tons of readers commenting on their blogs. I want more people to get to know them.
Tonight I have Talitha Nelle, from VICTORIAN SOUL CRITIQUES, joining me. Not only does she love discussing the books she highlight's and reviews on her blog, but her featured books are very seldom books you have seen a million times. She talks about quite a few older books, and some classics, too. I love it!

1. When did you first become aware there were blogs and what type of blogs were they?
When I was 14, the interwebs were chock full of blogs- mostly your typical ones that were like online diaries. I started my own blog that was an assortment of random thoughts and book reviews, but dastardly slow dial up internet (it was a thing) ended my blogging career within three months.
L.L. Ah, yes, dial up, I remember it well.

2. How did you discover there were book specific blogs?
I would say I learned that around the time I joined Goodreads, which was in 2012. I joined many online book clubs, since the ones in real life were mainly focused on popular books. Many of the people who are fixtures in Goodreads book clubs also run book blogs on the side to share their opinions on books.

3.What made you decide to start blogging?
I really like to volunteer to do things, but most of the volunteer efforts I've been involved in require you to maintain a schedule on their terms. With my various ailments, I can't say I'll be well enough to do anything every Tuesday for a year, much less be presentable when I do. That narrowed it down to something I could do online on my terms, and since I read many books and enjoy writing, book blogging was a very easy choice for me.

4. Have you ever thought about vlogging?
Yes, but if I did I wouldn't be an in-front-of-the-camera vlogger. I don't like bothering much with my appearance most days, so basically all you'd see would be my cat George wandering around while I narrated my take on a specific book. It'd be cat performance art/a podcast... a bookish "podcat" performance.
L.L. That sounds like a brilliant idea. I read that booktubing like this is starting to become more popular. I stumbled upon one a couple of weeks ago that I adored. I am putting the link in my The Sunday Post tomorrow. I love the term "podcat"! I love George, too, by the way.

I want to squishy hug him!

5. What is your favorite genre?
It was difficult for me to come up with this one, but I have to say speculative fiction. I like any book that uses imaginative elements to tell stories, because then the story has almost limitless possibilities. If you did add a surprise element that was slightly unrealistic to contemporary or historical fiction, you'd have many credible reviews telling you it was unrealistic (and yes, I've been one of those reviewers).
L.L. I have been one of those reviewers, too. 

6. If you were going to write a book what would it be about?
I actually am writing a fantasy book, and I have been for almost 12 years (September is my writer-versary of sorts). Right now I've been shoring up my characterizations by writing almost a fanfiction of my own book, because it seems the only true way to work on worldbuilding and characterizations without stumbling in the dark of seemingly mucking up my own "real" book. I understand how that might seem a bit weird, but it's the only way to satisfy my perfectionist instincts.
L.L. I love this!

7. What is your favorite book of all time?
This is also a very difficult question, but when it comes down to it, I think my favorite book is The Hero and the Crown (Damar #2) by Robin McKinley (it's a standalone, set in the same world as the previous book The Blue Sword, though the events of this book occur before The Blue Sword). You have an awesome heroine who fights dragons (among other things), and though she gets ill in various ways, she manages to persevere. I'm so grateful I found that book as a kid.

8. What is the first book you remember reading all by yourself?
I think it was King of the Wind: The Story of the Godolphin Arabian by Marguerite Henry. I had a difficult time reading, but I remember the gorgeous illustrations helping me along. I may have read other books before it on my own, but that's really the only one I can recall reading at that young age.

9. Music or no music when reading?
It depends on the book. With speculative fiction, I generally don't because I have to concentrate on creating the world as the author sees it- with classics, I like to listen to Tchaikovsky's compositions.

10. Coffee or tea?
Coffee, but only because my stomach can't tolerate tea at all. I've tried various herbal teas (even those supposedly meant to soothe stomachs from a specialty tea shop) and my stomach doesn't like any of them. With coffee, I have to make sure it isn't too strong and drown it in milk. I used to drink two huge mugs of coffee a day, but now I can have one small cup per day.

11. If you could have the complete works of one author, for free, whom would you pick?
P.G. Wodehouse, but only because I already have collected/hoarded all my other favorite author's works, and he's among the only more prolific authors I've yet to collect all the works of.
L.L. From the mentions of him on your blog I have added a Wodehouse book to my tbr!

12. Favorite book that was assigned in school?
Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand- technically, it's a play, but the other books we were assigned were either unremarkable to begin with or over-taught to the point you loathed them. The plot twist in Cyrano is seen in many other books later down the line, but to me, Cyrano is the one truly unforgettable character who portrays that twist.

13. Favorite season?
I used to like spring or autumn, but since those tend to be rainy weather months and rain doesn't coexist well with my pain, I like summer the best now. Nothing is better than going camping in the summer, or simply staying up late to look at the stars.

14. Favorite reading spot?
I usually read in bed, because it's easier for me to prop myself up into a better postural position. When I'm sitting in a chair reading, I put my head too far forward and then get headaches from the bad posture.

15. Favorite book to movie adaptation?
The Princess Bride is my favorite movie, so I think it's also my favorite book to movie adaptation. I don't think it could be possibly done better than it was, even though it did stray from the book in some areas.

16. The book that made you cry the hardest?
I think it would be All Creatures Great and Small (All Creatures Great and Small #1-2) by James Herriot, though not in the way you'd expect. It isn't really a sad book, and I was laughing and crying at various points of the book because if you've ever owned and loved an animal there are various stories within it that you should be able to relate to. I read it shortly after the first dog I exclusively owned, Jewels, died, which is why I think I cried so much.

17. Your all time favorite book character?
Lisbeth Salander of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson is probably the most complicated character I've ever seen portrayed and somehow she sticks out as my favorite character- even though I didn't rate the book five stars and it's a genre I avoid (crime thrillers). Generally, any vengefully "gray" character or antihero/ine ends up being my favorite, though there are limits on the amount of gray morality I will tolerate.

18. What book series do you think would make a great television show?
If it was done right, I think The Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire series by Rod Duncan would make an excellent (and interesting) tv series- there's a lot of action going on. Some of the other series I'd like to see on tv I think they'd absolutely butcher due to poor graphics or they'd skip over the parts that mattered most to me. I think The Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire would be an easier series to film due to it being an alternate history that somewhat mirrors our own.

19. Favorite book pet?
Ling the raccoon of Fate's Edge (The Edge #3) by Ilona Andrews (which is an urban fantasy book). Clearly my cat George is a relative of Ling's, because he would also make a great thief's companion.

20. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
I don't think I'd be blogging (at all) if there was not a community of book bloggers. Sure, there's always a bad apple every once in a while, but most of the people I've "met" have been welcoming and enthusiastic, even if I don't like the same books that they like or love that book they loved. Books generally aren't the only thing we all have in common, even if that's what we blog about.
Thanks for interviewing me, La La!

Thanks for joining me, Talitha, and letting me pick your brains!

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