Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Book Meme

As Bronteana kindly tagged me for a book meme and I really had to have a bit of a think, here it is (finally), in all it's squalid unliterary glory.

Caveat: I'm a information junkie, I will read practically anything, except girly chick lit, romantic novellas (Mills and Boon junk) and books that leave a bad taste in your mouth, which unfortunately you don't know until you've finished it. However then you can avoid that particular writer like the plague.

Any way, here goes:

1. One book that changed your life:

This would have to be George's Marvellous Medicine, by Roald Dahl. The first book I ever bought ( I saved up for ages!), and I've loved books and reading ever since.

2. One book that you’ve read more than once:

Mm, there are many books that I reread, however, the book that I reread the most is probably Guards Guards, by Terry Pratchett. This is followed closely by Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte.

I'm a big Terry Pratchett fan, his early books are laugh out loud funny. The Discworld is an addictive place, full of mad characters, silly puns and an enormous sense of fun. I love them, because you can retreat into the universe the writer has created and your imagination paints in all the bits inbetween. And Wuthering Heights, really doesn't need to be justified. It's a great book, enough said.

3. One book you’d want on a desert island:

Erm, can I not just take an entire library, I don't think I can pick just one! Ok, ok, how about an omnibus edition of all Austen, Bronte, Dickens, Hardy and Conan Doyle books? It might actually turn out to be large enough to float me home. I can't choose just one. Unless you're talking about an ibook upon which I am capable of downloading as many books as I want.

Edited to add: My favourite book of all time would have to come with me - To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee. I've reread this book almost as much as Wuthering Heights. It is a must read novel, the only one Harper Lee ever wrote. The gothic tone that I enjoy in novels such as Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre and Northhanger Abbey is just as well portrayed in this book, albeit Southern Gothic. What else do you call an old house with a recluse living in it, being made to read to an old woman who is dying? I love this book, it's coming with me to that desert island.

4. One book that made you laugh:

Again, so many books make me laugh, how can I pick just one!? But I think I'll have to put The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole aged Thirteen and Three Quarters. And all its sequels. This book makes me weep with laughter, so funny even after the hundreth read. Truly a modern classic, but peculiarly British, like me (peculiar and British that is, I'm no classic, I'm not even classy).

I have to mention Charlie Brooker's Screenburn, because it made me laugh out loud in the bookshop. And people stared at me. It's a collection of his TV reviews and he's very critical, scathing, vicious, frequently profane, but oh my word, he's funny!

5. One book that made you cry:

I'm a flinty, stony hearted old baggage. Practically nothing makes me cry. But the book that came closest is Little Women. I'd have gotten away with it, if it hadn't have been for that pesky Beth March. *Shakes fist*

6. One book that you wish had been written:

Hard one: I suppose I'll have to chime in with Bronteana and say Emma by Charlotte Bronte. To be honest I've never heard of an unfinished Bronte novel, but I'd like to read what was started, if never completed, just for the sake of completion, I believe I've read all Charlotte's other novels, not much of the Gondal stuff though. I'll be good and stay away from Clare Boland's rewrite.

7. One book that you wish had never been written:

Argh, Wide Sargasso Sea gets a vote from me too! But my all time unfavourite novel, that I hated so much, I didn't even finish, which ruined my 100% success rate at reading novels, is: A Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole. I know he was a tragic writer who only ever wrote one book and then killed himself, but take an unsympathetic character, loose plotting and melange of unlikeable characters and you have a book I had to take back to the book shop. Thank heavens they gave me my money back, or it could have gotten really nasty.

8. One book you’re currently reading:

I read about 5 - 6 books simultaneously, but the one I'm liking the best has got to be Half Moon Investigations, by Eoin Colfer. It is a kids book, but I like it. With lines like: "they stared at each other until their eyeballs dried out and they had to stop." What's not to like.

9. One book you’ve been meaning to read:

There is a pile awaiting me on my shelf, but the one I'm going out to buy with my hard earned cash tomorrow is called Never The Bride, by Paul Magrs. The premise is that the Bride of Frankenstein lives and is called Brenda. Looking forward to it already.

10. Now tag five people:

Eek, I've only been blogging for a short while, I don't know that many people, so I tag Aidan Brack, Bronteana and er, I don't know anyone else. A right billy no mates I am!

Is it bad manners to tag people whose blogs you read, but have never commented? I'll leave it there and add more later if I think of them.

I think I'm going to do a similar thing a bit later when I've caught my breath and expand on a few questions, there are many books that make me laugh for example.