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09 September 2013

The Seven Sins of Reading

Share your sins, you know you want to

 As most of you know, I am on Twitter.  I have some fantastic followers and I follow some fantastic people.  Most of them happen to have blogs, a fact which both fascinates me and depresses me but that is beside the point.  It turns out the magnificent Anne-Marie @ChildLedChaos writes a great blog ( and she tweeted her Seven Sins of Reading.  Immediately, she informs me (the reader) that she stole the idea... great precedent because I liked her answers so much I will steal the idea too, though not the answers... Please forgive all the links, as I am writing in essence with inspiration found on Twitter, of all places, I feel it is appropriate.    One more thing, there are also links to my blog posts if I have written about that book... 

GREED: What is your most inexpensive book? What is your most expensive book?
My cheapest book comes from someone who left it in a serviced flat in London.  If you mean paid, I paid 1 euro at a charity book shop for 'Chocolat' by @Joannechocolat as the dog had eaten the original.  My most expensive books hover around the 100 euro mark give or take 20... These books include architectural tomes bought directly from the publisher at their warehouse and a special edition 'Lord of the Rings' that I received from my BPR for Christmas some ten years ago.  I have no problems in buying hardback editions of authors I love 'Peaches for Monsieur Le Cure' by @Joannechocolat bought from @Hatchards, for instance, but I will look for bargains when available.  

WRATH: What author do you have a love/hate relationship with?
At this moment I hate a book by Ian McEwan, though I have never met him... at least he can write and still make me angry.  For true disgust it is the 'Twilight' series by Stephenie Meyer.  She cannot write.  There are a few others who make me anxious to read them but not because I hate them, rather I love them.  Reading these writers often leave me drained so I have to be in the correct state of mind. Amongst them are China Mieville, Toni Morrison and Haruki Murakami but there are several others.  

GLUTTONY: What book have you deliciously devoured over and over with no shame whatsoever?
This is not a short list.  There are several books I read annually and several books I read as the mood takes me.  'Pride and Prejudice' requires little explanation.  Readers either adore it or are indifferent.  'The Blue Sword', a horsy romance set in some fantasy desert land with magic, swords, wars and the like.  I read it around the age of 13 and still do because it takes me back and it is quite good fun.  'The Hitchhikers's Guide to the Galaxy'. When the unexpected death of Douglas Adams came to light, I cried.  He made me laugh and I expected him to make me laugh for many more years... I still miss him.  Quite a bit of Terry Pratchett (@terryandrob), not strictly a book but when I am down I pick him up and I realise that I am right to be down.  There are so many things wrong in the world, (like the movement for equal heights which is weird) but then he makes me smile and twists my points of view into solutions.  He is a treasure.  'The Lord of the Rings', I am not sure why I read Tolkien so much.  Perhaps, it is the depth of his books as well as the breadth, moreover he has an exquisite use of language.  'The Elegance of the Hedgehog', intelligent, charming, life affirming; read once and call me in the morning.  'Let the Right One In', reminds me of who the real monsters are sometimes.   'The Count of Monte Cristo', good grief, Dumas is just so much fun.  'Afrodita' by Isabel Allende (@isabelallende), usually I read her with caution but this book confirmed two things I suspected all along... 1. Never pass up a piece of cake, 2. Never pass up the chance to make love.   And 'Harry Potter' well written, fun, loads of great words... 

SLOTH: What book have you neglected to read due to laziness?  
This one is easy, 'The Casual Vacancy', it did not grab me and then I just could not be bothered.
But I am sure there are a few others....

PRIDE: What book do you most talk about in order to sound like a very intellectual reader?
Pride? me?  Recently, at lunch or coffee I have mentioned 'Sex and the Citadel' by Shereen El Feki (@shereenelfeki) more than is necessary.  Having said that, it mixes sex and intellect so it is a win/win without looking pretentious, right?  I talk about books (or films) until someone physically stops me.  I love to read and I love to talk about books, hence this blog.  I am not a snob about what I read though.  If I read it, I will talk about it.  

LUST: What attributes do you find most attractive in male or female characters?
I do not have a favorite type of character.  I have some favorite characters in literature,  Ford Prefect, Death, Dumbledore, Eliza Bennett, etc.  There are books that have ensemble groups that I love, 'Angelmaker' by Nick Harkaway (@Harkaway) comes to mind but a type I love? No.  I have been thinking about it and I realise that it has to do with the type of story.  I will say that I do not like books with a useless damsel in distress.   But, an annoying, whining woman can be perfect, Mrs. Bennett from 'Pride and Prejudice' is an example.  She is perfect where she is but put such a character in a James Bond novel and she would be terrible. Of course, that is an opinion, someone else might love the idea.  

ENVY: What books would you most like to receive as a gift?
Most books will do, though recently I have discovered signed books, thank you @Hatchards and @Waterstones.  If you must, get it signed please...

P.S.  I started out just linking the lovely Anne-Marie and things got out of hand...  If it is any consolation I added them after the post was written and not during because that would have driven me crazy... By the way, please leave your own answers in the comments box, I would love to know your naughty book sins.