One of the challenges of participating in #blogjune (apart from the obvious one of having to come up with something to say every single day) is getting around to other people’s blogs and reading and commenting on the posts.
I am a firm believer that since this is a blog challenge, if I agree or disagree, or am moved or inspired by a post then I will comment about that on the post, rather than as a reply to the tweet that may have alerted me to the post in the first place. To this end, I love to make use of @katejf’s wonderful list of June bloggers that she has collected into a Netvibes page here. By accessing the blog posts from this page I bypass the twitter notification completely – as well as picking up on posts that may not have been publicised in another way.
Using the Netvibes page also exposes me to blogs I don’t normally follow. An RSS feed means it’s easy to keep reading the same ones and one of the things I love about the #blogjune challenge is discovering new people! I try to read & comment on at least one a day from someone I don’t know as part of the challenge to myself.
And look, we are already a quarter of the way there folks!
I love this. Like most Unshelved offerings it gets to the ‘good bits’ of an issue in 3 simple steps. Do you have to work in libraries to appreciate Unshelved I wonder?
Pushed for time today – this, I am afraid is my post for the day. However, it signals an intention to get back to the subject of e-books. Hopefully during June.
With thanks to @flexnib for this one:
1. The book I’m currently reading:
Thud by Terry Pratchett.
2. The last book I finished:
Jingo, also by Terry Pratchett (I’m going through a phase)
3. The next book I want to read:
On my bedside table is The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf. It’s been sitting there a while as the storyline is about 2 missing little girls and the unravelling of a community, so I’m not sure if I’ve got the internal fortitude to read it….
4. The last book I bought:
52 Suburbs, the book of the blog.
5. The last book I was given:
I got Caleb’s Crossing by Geraldine Brooks for Mothers Day 🙂
This is not meant to be a rant about Overdrive, more a discussion of my experiences (ok, frustrations) navigating this e-landscape. I haven’t really taken up the e-books challenge yet, I like physical books, I love audio books and don’t really have a ‘need’ at this point to outlay for an e-reader. I get all the arguments for and against, I really do, and I can see a future with an e-book reader, but at this point I’d rather spend the money on something else.
I’ve had a few forays into Kindle for the iPhone, and apart from the iPhone screen being too small for serious or long term reading, have found that to be a very positive experience.
However, my main interest at this point is audio books (well, it’s always been an interest as has already been discussed here) as I have some bus travel in my daily commute to work and I can’t ‘read’ on a bus due to travel sickness.
I prefer to borrow my audio books rather than buy them and my local library has an Overdrive service that I use regularly. However, as most of the audio books in Overdrive seem to be in wma format, they can’t be downloaded to my Mac laptop. Before the Mac, I used to download them to my (Windows) laptop, then transfer them to my iPod or, more recently, my iPhone.
Now, I can only use audio books in mp3 format and that’s about 10% of the audio book collection on offer. I’ve given up on the Mac version of Overdrive and now download them via the iPhone app direct to my device – which method I had been avoiding because of the previously mentioned limitations on format….
I also can’t return them when I’m finished with them, which means they sit on my account (and therefore unavailable to anyone else) for the full 21 days, in spite of the fact that it only takes me about 7 to get through an average audio book (I know that sounds like I do nothing but listen to books, but in my new job I am commuting up to 3 hours every day). If anyone knows of a way to make that happen by the way, please, please let me know in the comments!
There is of course an up side to all of this. I have to have an audio book to listen to, and because my choice is so limited I’m listening to a lot of books I probably would not have normally chosen, in genres that wouldn’t normally be my preference. I think this is a good thing. I’ve only given up on an audio book once, whereas I give up on print books easily if they are not grabbing me or I become bored with the story. This is also a good thing. (The only reason I gave up on the audio book in question was the narrator’s voice – drove me crazy).
Am I getting something wrong? To use (another) of my favourite phrases: Is it just me?
I came across this ‘channel surfing’ on the interwebz tonight, thanks to Nose in a Book for the inspiration.
I don’t remember learning to read – I know I was quite young and could possibly read by the time I started school. Certainly mum & dad were (are) both great readers and I know we used to go to either the library or the newsagent (it was a small country town) for me to borrow or buy a book each week. I was really lucky, mum & dad never censored my reading (except perhaps by price I guess!).
2. What do you find most challenging to read?
Science fiction and anything that won a major prize. I suppose I like to read for fun and if it’s TOO challenging then it’s no longer fun? Someone gave me Wolf Hall for Christmas this year, looking forward to reading it as I love historical fiction but a bit scared by the Man Booker sticker!
I love my public library and use it regularly. My daughter & I often spend our ‘Tuesday night girls night’ at the library – she doing research while I browse and borrow books and magazines. Sometimes I will go with a specific idea in mind, more often than not I’ll browse shelf ends and display titles and pick up something that takes my fancy. I’ve also been known to pick a random non-fiction shelf bay and choose something to borrow from the books on offer.
4. Have your library habits changed since you were younger?
If anything I use it more. We were frequent library users as kids, mum and (more particularly) dad used to take us to borrow and read all the time. When my kids were little I used to take them for storytime but not on a regular basis as parking was so difficult due to its popularity!
5. Has social media changed your reading life?
Twitter puts me in touch with lots of things to read that I might otherwise not have ever heard about. I follow a lot of blogs – some of them review books, but if it sounds interesting I’m likely to read it regardless of the review I might have read.
6. What percentage of your books do you get from new book stores, second hand books stores, the library, online exchange sites, online retailers, e-books, other?
I rarely buy new books. I have a thing about spending money to start with, then there’s the whole sustainability issue so I’d rather re-read, recycle or buy second hand. I have a healthy book swapping habit with a few friends and usually borrow a few from my mother when I visit her as well. Then there’s the library of course – probably about 50% of my reading comes from there. I don’t do e-books but LOVE audiobooks.
Would you believe I don’t really have any? I’m pretty hard on books, the only thing I really hate is when I get sand in them at the beach…..
8. Do you read for pleasure or for work?
Both. Most emphatically both. Luckily, it often crosses over 🙂
9. When you give people books as gifts, how do you decide what to give them?
Usually by considering their interests and choosing something I think might interest them but is just ‘off centre’ enough to be pretty sure they might not have bought it for themselves. I love buying books for my kids – I have made some bad choices there, but not too many over the years.
A meme I’ve copied from Justgirlwithshoes, who got it from Rien d’important the Angus & Robertson top 100 books for 2010.
* = Books I have read
+ = Books I have enjoyed reading
@ = Books I would like to read
1 The Twilight Saga Stephenie Meyer *
2 Harry Potter 1-7 J.K. Rowling *+
3 The Millennium Trilogy Stieg Larsson*+
4 To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee * +
5 The Lovely Bones Alice Sebold *+
6 Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen *+
7 My Sister’s Keeper Jodi Picoult
8 Sookie Stackhouse Charlaine Harris
9 The Time Traveler’s Wife Audrey Niffenegger *+
10 The Book Thief Markus Zusak @
11 Lunch in Paris Elizabeth Bard
12 The Kite Runner Khaled Hosseini *+
13 Memoirs of a Geisha Arthur Golden
14 61 Hours Lee Child
15 Dragon Haven Robin Hobb
16 Vampire Academy Richelle Mead
17 The Silent Sea Clive Cussler
18 Mao’s Last Dancer Li Cunxin *+
19 The Lord of the Rings J.R.R. Tolkien *+
20 Tuscan Rose Belinda Alexandra *
21 The Power of One Bryce Courtenay *
22 The Notebook Nicholas Sparks
23 The Pacific Hugh Ambrose
24 Ransom David Malouf
25 Jane Eyre Charlotte Bronte *
26 Dear John Nicholas Sparks
27 Magician Raymond E. Feist
28 The Catcher in the Rye J.D. Salinger *+
29 House Rules Jodi Picoult
30 Wuthering Heights Emily Bronte *+
31 A Thousand Splendid Suns Khaled Hosseini
32 Marley & Me John Grogan
33 Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls Jane Austen & Steve
34 Breath Tim Winton *++++++++++
35 The Bronze Horseman Paullina Simons *
36 Cloudstreet Tim Winton *+++++
37 The People’s Train Thomas Keneally
38 Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland Lewis Carroll *
39 Truth Peter Temple
40 Little Women Louisa May Alcott *+
41 Eat, Pray, Love Elizabeth Gilbert *
42 The Host Stephenie Meyer
43 The Da Vinci Code Dan Brown *
44 The Book of Emmett Deborah Forster
45 Ice Station Matthew Reilly *
46 The Road Cormac Macarthy *
47 The Memory Keeper’s Daughter Kim Edwards
48 Persuasion Jane Austen *+
49 Jessica Bryce Courtenay
50 Atonement Ian McEwan
51 Tuesdays with Morrie Mitch Albom *+++
52 The Pillars of the Earth Ken Follet *+
53 The Alchemist Paulo Coehlo *+
54 April Fool’s Day Bryce Courtenay
55 Life of Pi Yann Martel *
56 Angels & Demons Dan Brown *
57 The Pact Jodi Picoult
58 The Five People You Meet in Heaven Mitch Albom *
59 Parrot and Olivier in America Peter Carey
60 Always Looking Up Michael J. Fox
61 Seven Ancient Wonders Matthew Reilly
62 The Hobbit J.R.R. Tolkien *+
63 Nineteen Minutes Jodi Picoult
64 The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Burrows @
65 The Lost Symbol Dan Brown
66 Solar Ian McEwan
67 Fallen Lauren Kate
68 The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
69 P.S. I Love You Cecila Ahern
70 The Chronicles of Narnia C.S. Lewis *+
71 Obernewtyn Isobelle Carmody *
72 A Fortunate Life A.B. Facey
73 Handle with Care Jodi Picoult
74 Cross Stitch Diana Gabaldon *
75 Dirt Music Tim Winton *++++
76 It Stephen King
77 Hourglass Claudia Gray
78 Tully Paullina Simons
79 The Mists of Avalon Marion Zimmer Bradley
80 Shantaram: A Novel Gregory David Roberts
81 The Princess Bride William Goldman
82 Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell *+
83 Requiem for a Species Clive Hamilton
84 The Other Boleyn Girl Philippa Gregory @
85 Break No Bones Kathy Reichs *+
86 Animal Farm George Orwell *+
87 The Six Sacred Stones Matthew Reilly
88 The Five Greatest Warriors Matthew Reilly
89 Maralinga Judy Nunn
90 Fight Club Chuck Palahniuk
91 One for the Money Janet Evanovich *
92 Worst Case James Patterson
93 Once in a Lifetime Cathy Kelly *
94 The Stand Stephen King
95 Anybody Out There Marian Keyes *
96 The Secret Rhonda Byrne
97 Temple Matthew Reilly*
98 All That Remains Patricia Cornwall
99 The Slap Christos Tsolkias *+
100 Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice