Not my bag baby!


Every Tuesday over at  The Broke and Bookish we all get to look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  This week’s topic is:

Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly NOT Want To Read A Book

The opposite of last week’s list, I’ve tried to use the same headings, so here goes:

  1. Bloggers  – if all the bloggers I chat with seem to be not really enjoying a book then I admit it puts me off reading, even if it’s a book I really want to read it will probably move down the ‘must read’ list – life is too short and whilst I like to form my own opinion if the popular opinion is generally against a particular book it will put me off picking it up or at least make me less eager to do so.
  2. Author – well, sometimes you can have an author that just doesn’t seem to work for you, their particular style maybe doesn’t do it for you.  When this happens then, yes, maybe the first couple of times I’d put it down to experience and try another book but after that it would probably be a no go for me.
  3. Cover – just as a great cover makes me want to pick up the book, well, the opposite is obviously just as true.  I would probably stay away from certain types of covers.
  4. Hype – yes, I used this last week, but while I do usually crumble in the face of popular opinion sometimes my stubborn streak just kicks in and the hype really does put me off.
  5. Part of a series – maybe the first or second book didn’t work out for me – I do have quite a number of uncompleted series.
  6. Genre – I know that authors don’t really like to be pigeon holed, but if a book falls into certain categories then I would probably not be very interested – not a judgement on any body else of course, just not my go to kind of book – romance, for example, I don’t mind my book having a romance along the way but just not the main focus.
  7. Content – I do tend to find insta love and love triangles a little over used and if I read about a book having such content then I would be less interested in reading.
  8. Certain descriptions – I’m not a really hard sci fi fan, simply because I figure things will go over my head.
  9. Unlikable characters.  Characterisation is such a big selling point for me,  Fantastic characters just make the book don’t they?  If I’m reading a book and can’t get along with the character it will just slow the book down and ultimately stop me from picking it back up.
  10. What did I miss?


‘You had me at epic fantasy’


Every Tuesday over at  The Broke and Bookish we all get to look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  This week’s topic is:

Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book

  1. Blogger recommendations – I find so many good books this way.  Once you find your own favourite blogs to follow with people who, not only have similar tastes, but also whose opinions you trust – it’s such a great way to pick up new book recommendations.
  2. Author – I have a number of authors who I would automatically pick up: Mark Lawrence, Neil Gaiman, Sarah Pinborough, Patrick Rothfuss, Alice Hoffman, Scott Lynch, Lauren Beukes, to name a few  – the list could go on but I’ll stop there.
  3. Publisher – let’s face it I follow quite a lot of publishers and keep my eye on their anticipated releases and new authors.
  4. Cover – I know it seems fickle but I do love a great cover and it is the thing that initially draws me to the book.
  5. Hype – I can deny it all I like but eventually any really, seriously, hyped book will eventually get to me and I will crumble in the face of popular demand!
  6. Part of a series – obviously, if I’m reading and loving a series I am eager for the next instalment.
  7. Genre – I know that authors don’t really like to be pigeon holed, but if a book falls into any of the following: fantasy, science fiction, steampunk, horror, alternate universe, urban fantasy, or any of a number of other sub genres then I’ll probably pick it up.
  8. Content – if a book happens to have vampires, fae, magic, dragons, goblins, witches – you get the picture – then I pretty much more than likely want to read it.
  9. Grimdark – a description that is a tad over used – but still it works like a charm for me and always makes me want to pick up the book in question.
  10. What did I miss?

Breaking the mould..


Every Tuesday over at  The Broke and Bookish we all get to look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  This week’s topic is:\

Ten Of The Most Unique Books I’ve Read

Okay, unique books.  Well, I’ve had a good think and this is what I came up with:

  1. Alice in Wonderland.  I read this book many years ago and the one thing I initially recall was thinking how very ‘out there’ it was.  Seriously, was Lewis Carroll on some sort of mind bending hallucinogenics!  Seriously.  Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe….. (I rest my case – even though I do love, LOVE, that poem – do you have any notion how long it took just to type those 13 words – the number of auto correct words that took over?  What the shagging hell is is a slithy tove anyway?)
  2. Animal Farm by George Orwell.  Now this was another fairly early read for me and I think the whole idea of allegory went over my head so fast that it probably had some sort of butterfly effect on the other side of the world.  Anyway, animals, running the farm – and those blinking pigs!
  3. The Time Traveller’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger.  Now this is one of those books that I picked up on a sale.  I really enjoyed this and I thought it was very unique – in fact I gave my copy to somebody in work and she actually cried (which was more emotion than I probably showed) – but, yeah, we both loved it.  So unexpected.
  4. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins – I don’t mind admitting that I didn’t like the idea of this book at all.  I couldn’t get my head around the idea of a games arena where children fought to the death.  Nope.  Too much.  I thought simply that it was going too far but, eventually, I picked it up and it was the very opposite of what I expected.
  5. Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer – creepy as.  OMG.  This is a scary little number.  I haven’t caught up with the series yet and I like to keep telling myself ‘I haven’t had time’ – who am I kidding – I’m scared.  I will though.  I can do this – face your fears and all that.
  6. The Mechanical by Ian Tregillis – this is such a great book.  I’m going to completely confess that I didn’t really think I would like this, the reason, yes, *hangs head in shame*, I didn’t really feel drawn to the cover – there it is – but, I’m very pleased to say that this book was absolutely brilliant.  I loved it.
  7. Flex, Flux, Fix by Ferrett Steinmetz.  An excellent series, unbelievably unique, jaw droppingly brilliant, packed with excitement and danger and this fantastic combination of fantasy and games all mashed together.  I loved this.
  8. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke – what a tour de force this is, maybe not for everyone but I loved it.  The history, the fantasy and the vision.  What a phenomenal piece of work.
  9. The Broken Empire by Mark Lawrence- Prince, King and Emperor of Thorns.  Undoubtedly unique.  Dark and gritty, violent and yet compelling, well written and with a sweeping vision.  I love this series – maybe not for everyone but it really blew me away.
  10. This one is for you – choose your unique novel?

Squee with me.


Every Tuesday over at  The Broke and Bookish we all get to look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  This week’s topic is:

top ten fandoms I’m in

I’m not really in any fandoms as such, I don’t think I am any way, but I am a fan of things.  Especially bookish things – so without further ado here they are:

  1. Quotes.  I’m in my own little fandom for quotes.  Most of these are from films, some are from books.  Now, when I say I’m into quotes let me be clear.  I don’t mean wonderful words of literary wisdom – not because I don’t like ‘wonderful words of literary wisdom’ – just that they’re not the first thing that pop into my head given a situation.  Of course, not everyone is always on the same page so when I come out with some line or other from Monty Python or Young Frankenstein or Star Wars, or just about any other film I’ve watched and enjoyed, not everyone is aware of what I’m going on about – inconceivable!  Truly inconceivable.
  2. Lord of the Rings.  You just have to love LotR – you really DO!  It is folly not too.  First of all the book is great.  Second of all Aragorn.  (c) three damn mighty fine movies – and, to get back to number (1) – lots of quote material ‘one does not simply…’
  3. The Classics Club – this is a great little club if you want to meet some friendly people who are all into reading the classics – its a really lovely easy going club, you can take part in their monthly memes or draw up your own list of classics that you’d like to read in your own timeframe – no stress.  I like no stress.
  4. Harry Potter – quote fest much.
  5. Kindles – who knew that I would be my own Kindle (or e-rearder) fandom.  Not me. I railled.  I sulked.  I practically had a tantrum when my husband bought me one with something along the lines of “How dare you, I will never read electronic books!” delivered in, I assure you, a suitably affronted and haughty fashion.  And now, well, I just sit and eat humble pie.  Lots of it.  Mm, mm, I love that humble pie – everyone loves pie don’t they – and, you can eat humble pie whilst reading your favourite book on your e-reader, because it’s easy to swipe the page.
  6. Books, obviously..  But, notwithstanding the e-rearder comment above, I still love to collect books.  Something about the feel and the smell of books.  And lets face it the shelves won’t fill themselves now will they.  Technically speaking, mine may be a little full already (hence the husband buying the e-reader).
  7. Jean Tannen.  Yes, I am the Jean Tannen fandom.  There’s only me in the fandom of course, not because nobody else likes Jean Tannen – I simply won’t let anybody else join.  He’s all mine.
  8. Libraries – libraries are the bees hips, the camels pajamas and the cats knees.  Me likey libraries.  I don’t tend to use my library as much as I used to – I’d probably use it more if they had more ebooks available – it just makes life easier – and quick.  But still I have to give a shout out to libraries.
  9. Book blogs.  You people.  You’ve given me a burgeoning TBR.  That mountain is likely to fall over one day and smother somebody – if I go missing for a prolonged period, send out a search party.  That is all.  Although, in fairness, now I’m buying more e-books, the mountain has undergone a slight slow down in growth as the books are now stashed, safely, out there in the ether.  Up in a cloud. But, without all you other bloggers and your enthusiasm and constant recommendations I would have missed some mighty fine books.  Moving in your own little bubble does restrict your ability to pick all the good books after all.  Thank you all of you, I’m your biggest fan!
  10. This one is for you – your very own fandom space – tell me what it is, so that I can join in with you.

And now, for posterity, whenever you’re in one of those situations, the one where you’ve just had enough, it’s all too much, and then, just one more piece of junk lands on top, the straw that breaks the camel’s back – this is just for you, this is what you can say in such a situation:


Charmed, delighted and enchanted.


Every Tuesday over at the  The Broke and Bookish we all get to look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  This week’s topic is:

Ten Authors that I’ve met/seen/listened to

  1. Neil Gaiman – at a book reading.  Not only are his books amazing but he’s great to listen to and really patient.  He signed everyone’s books and it was a very long queue – must have took him forever (or at least a couple of hours).
  2. Joe Abercrombie.  Another reading organised at Central Library in Manchester.  This was for his venture into YA with his Half a King book.  I don’t think there’s anything better than listening to an author read their own work – they just bring something more to it.
  3. Robin Hobb.  A great reading for her The Wilful Princess and the Piebald Prince.  She answered lots of questions about her inspiration and how she came to write books.  Really interesting session.
  4. Sarah Pinborough – this is a woman who just makes me laugh.  She’s so funny!  And, of course it doesn’t hurt that I’ve read and loved quite a number of her books.  She was at the Gollancz Festival last year and took part in a number of the panels.
  5. Ben Aaronovitch.  At a book event in Waterstones, Deansgate, Manchester.  Another really genuinely nice guy – he just had plenty of funny stories about asking fans about things on twitter and about sitting on different buses as they travelled around London just to take a different look at some of the places he could use in his writing.  I use public transport a lot – and there are always plenty of funny/not so funny stories as a result!
  6. Brandon Sanderson – another book event at the above Waterstones.  He was great to listen to.  He answered a bunch of questions, he spoke about his experiences as a writer and his processes, he read a sneaky peak out of his third Words of Radiance book and he signed a huge amount of books for an extremely long line of fans.
  7. Joanne Harris.  This was a very informal event at a Library in Oldham.  It was great because it was a very small venue and felt almost like you were all just having a chat.  There was a reading for the Gospel of Loki and then questions and answers.
  8. Joe Hill – who was at the Gollancz Festival.  I didn’t see too much of him but he did attend the end of one of the panels I was observing and he took part in the audience Q&A asking questions of the panel himself and I thought that was pretty cool.
  9. Elizabeth May – who also attended the Gollancz Festival – a lovely young woman indeed whose name you will no doubt recognise from The Falconer series.
  10. Who next??
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