Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday

I haven’t done one of BTTs in awhile but I realised that Deb has posted my question that I asked earlier in the year! So I guess it can only be fitting that I join in. 🙂

“I couldn’t sleep a wink, so I just read and read, day and night … it was there I began to divide books into day books and night books,” she went on. “Really, there are books meant for daytime reading and books that can be read only at night.”
– ‘The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera, p. 103.

Do you divide your books into day and night reads? How do you decide?

To a degree, I do. I don’t consciously divide my books but I find that my brain is more perceptive to some books during different times of the day as I discovered during uni. Lighter books that don’t need too much concentration are read during the day. The more difficult books, including non-fiction and theories, are read during the night. There’s really no point in trying to read and digest them during the day because I’d just need to re-read everything at night. I find I like reading classics most during the night.

This passage really struck me because I have sleep issues and am a semi-insomniac. I’m generally nocturnal and do everything better at night. It also makes me feel better and more energetic than during the day and in sunlight (perhaps I’m secretly a vampire. I do sparkle some times). All my best uni work, writing and research was done at 3am. 12am to around 4.30am is/was my peak and most productive period. Of course, since I started working, I can’t do that anymore but I always find myself up at 3.30ish on my days off even without meaning to.

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Booking Through Thursday

This week’s BTT:

In honor of National Grammar Day … it IS “March Fourth” after all … do you have any grammar books? Punctuation? Writing guidelines? Style books?

More importantly, have you read them?

How do you feel about grammar in general? Important? Vital? Unnecessary? Fussy?

This sounds pretty bad but I can’t really recall ever being taught grammar. I’m sure I was taught in primary school but it wasn’t exactly emphasised. Apparently, as I discovered not so long ago, that my generation was the victim of a new style of teaching that kind of left grammar out of the curriculum. So – grammar isn’t my strong point which is pretty embarrassing especially since I did my honours in English and plan to do a doctorate in English in the near future.

I should do one of those little day courses that goes over the grammar but it seems that the more I’m told about it, the more confusing it becomes and the worse my grammar gets! I skimmed through Lynne Truss’ Eat, Shoots and Leaves but that was more about punctuation. I’m pretty lax towards grammar but I do get a laugh when somebody writes ‘grammer’ and not ‘grammar’.

Booking Through Thursday

This week’s BTT:

The northern hemisphere, at least, is socked in by winter right now… So, on a cold, wintry day, when you want nothing more than to curl up with a good book on the couch … what kind of reading do you want to do?

Well, it’s actually in the middle of summer right now where I am but when it is winter (even though our winters are quite mild), I like nothing more than to tackle the thick and classics tomes  -Dickens and the russians are particularly good. I also like cozy mysteries like Agatha Christie. She’s a total comfort read for me while snuggled under my blankets and hearing the rain outside.

Booking Through Thursday

This week’s BTT.

Do you read the inside flaps that describe a book before or while reading it?

I don’t actually find blurbs, either on the back cover or on inside flaps, useful and rarely place a lot of emphasis on them but I do find myself re-reading it while progressing through the book. I find that many blurbs are really poorly written but it is a difficult job. My biggest pet peeve is when there’s no blurb at all and only quotes of people or critics (many of whom I know nothing nor care about) praising the book to high heavens. Now really – does that really help ordinary customers picking out books?

Booking Through Thursday

This week’s BTT:

What items have you ever used as a bookmark? What is the most unusual item you’ve ever used or seen used?

I’ve used the usual things – slips of paper, old transport tickets, dog-ears and many, many proper bookmarks. My main bookmark at the moment is a nice black leather one a friend brought back for me from Oxford University when she went to visit and several free ones from Readings bookshop which has cute little caricatures of Virginia Woolf, Samuel Johnson and Oscar Wilde.

The most unusual thing I’ve ever seen someone used was a nice, crisp $100 bill. I guess he had plenty to spare.

Booking Through Thursday

This week’s BTT:

What books and authors are you particularly thankful for this year?

I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving but I’m still thankful for these books and authors:

  • Stieg Larsson! – that he was able to complete the Millennium trilogy before he died.
  • M. J. Hyland – for giving us another amazing piece of work (and meeting her in person too!) with This is How.
  • Simone de Beauvoir – for her exploration and insight into what it means to be a female.
  • Albet Camus – for his perception of existentialist theories
  • Truman Capote – for producing utterly captivating stories.

Booking Through Thursday

This week’s BTT:

Do you think any current author is of the same caliber as Dickens, Austen, Bronte, or any of the classic authors? If so, who, and why do you think so? If not, why not? What books from this era might be read 100 years from now?

This is a difficult question and I’ve pondered over it during dinner. These are some authors I think will be a classic in the next century:

Margaret Atwood – for her visionary and wonderful writing such as The Handmaid’s Tale, Oryx and Crake, The Blind Assassin and Alias Grace.

J.M. Coetzee – I’ve only read one of his books but it was so wonderful that I think I’ll like the rest of his books. He’s also quite prolific for the quality of his writing and the issues he writes on.

Harper Lee – To Kill a Mockingbird. Enough said.

And of course, the existentialist writers – Albert Camus, Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre.

There are so many more authors that I think will pass the test of time: Vonnegut, Nabokov, Toni Morrison, George Orwell, Truman Capote…