Exam mode on! In spite of the pesky FA-1 which has come yet again to trouble us, I managed to fit in some time to randomly browse WordPress and think of what to write about next. So, while engaged thus, I found this gem of a post called 55 Quirky Questions for Readers @ smalltown bookworm. Since Cora, the brain behind this awesome blog (check it out!), was so kind as to leave an open nomination, I thought it would be pretty cool to try it out. Normally, I’m too lazy to respond to open nominations, but this one kinda appealed to me. Plus, I already a) wanted to write about something, b) didn’t know what to write about, and c) there were a few questions in this set which really made me think. So here goes! 🙂
1. Favourite Childhood Book?- This may sound clichéd–as will every single answer I give, probably–but one series I really loved as a kid was the Famous Five series, especially Five on a Hike Together. In fact, it’s probably the first-ever 200-pages-plus book I read on my own, so it’s special to me.
2. What are you reading right now?- Re-reads of HP7, a few John Green books, Anne Frank’s Diary of a Young Girl, Helen Keller’s The Story of My Life, and many others. Also my textbooks. If semi-abandoned books also count, then A Farewell to Arms.
3. What books do you have on request at the library?- Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns. I’d just begun to read them when stock-taking began, and I have yet to finish.
4. Bad book habit?- I tend to tear off bits of paper from the pages and eat them. It’s become quite a nuisance to one of my friends in particular, who complained that she was getting distracted from The Fault in Our Stars because large portions of margin were missing. (Only my own books, mind, not ones which I borrow!)
5. What do you currently have checked out from the library?- Unfortunately, nothing. 😥
6. Do you have an e-reader?- A Kindle.
7. Do you prefer to read one book at a time, or several at once?- Several. I tend to read rather fast, usually finish a book in one sitting, and like to have plenty of options.
8. Have your reading habits changed since you started blogging?- Nah. I don’t really blog that much about books.
9. Least favourite book you’ve read this year?- Allegiant of the Divergent series, by Veronica Roth. It didn’t live up to Divergent.
10. Favourite book you’ve read this year?- Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan. It addressed a sensitive issue with warmth and humour, and did it really well.
11. How often do you read out of your comfort zone?- I tend to read everything I can get my hands on. That said, I rarely read Malayalam books, which, seeing as it’s my native language, is kinda sad.
12. What is your reading comfort zone?- Anything in English; excepting erotica, which I loathe.
13. Can you read on the bus?- Oh yeah. In fact, I do most of my reading there.
14. Favourite place to read?- Anywhere. I don’t get distracted easily.
15. What’s your policy on book lending?- I’m pretty easy to get books from. I lend my books to nearly everyone, which, predictably, leads to many of them getting lost. I don’t usually lend out personal favourites, though.
16. Do you dog ear your books?- Nope.
17. Do you write notes in the margins of your books?- Occasionally. I try not to, though.
18. Do you break the spines of your books?- I just discovered I did, right now. XD
19. What is your favourite language to read?- English. In spite of the fact that, as a self-respecting Mallu, I really ought to read more Malayalam works, I’m just more comfortable with English. It probably comes from 10 years of being an expat.
20. What makes you love a book?- It’s one of those undefinable things. But those books which we love tend to be really passionate about their subject, so much so that we’re actually converted to their point of view. And if that particular subject happens to be a favourite of ours, then bingo. Oh, and it should be funny.
21. What will inspire you to recommend a book?- It usually depends on who I’m recommending it to. If I think it’ll inspire/interest/help/cheer someone up, I recommend it, no questions asked.
22. Favourite Genre?- Humour, satire, and mystery. Also adventure and sci-fi.
23. Genre you rarely read (but wish you did)?- Biography and historical fiction.
24. Favourite Biography?- Loosely interpreting “biography” to mean “a story of a life”, Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman would top the list. It’s definitely one of those books which first make you laugh, then make you think.
25. Have you ever read a self-help book (And, was it actually helpful)?- Plenty. And yeah, they were helpful. (Bet you didn’t see that coming. 😋)
26. Favourite Cookbook?- Uhh, I don’t really cook, you know…
27. Most Inspirational book you’ve read this year?- The Motorcycle Diaries, by Che Guevara. When I grow up, I’ll probably travel through India on a motorcycle like Che did in South America… thanks for the idea, M.Z.
28. Favourite Reading Snack?- Chocolate and paper. 😅
29. Name a case in which hype ruined your reading experience?- None so far as I remember.
30. How often do you agree with critics about a book?- I rarely listen to critics–I form my own opinions instead. I do read reviews, though.
31. How do you feel about giving bad/negative reviews?- Unless it’s a really horrible/boring book, the less said, the better.
32. If you could read in a foreign language, which language would you choose?- Probably Italian, for the operas. Or French. I already know Malayalam and a smattering of Hindi, so…
33. Most intimidating book you’ve read?- Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall. I put it down partway through last year, and since then, have found various excuses not to finish. Ditto goes for LOTR.
34. Most intimidating book you’re too nervous to begin?- Again, Hilary Mantel’s Bring Up the Bodies. If the first book was that intimidating, who knows about the next? Also Kafka’s Metamorphosis and Kipling’s Kim.
35. Favourite Poet?- It’s a close thing between Tennyson, Sarojini Naidu, Joyce Kilmer, and W. S. Gilbert.
36. How many books do you usually have checked out from the library at any given time?- Our school library allows only one book to be checked out at a time. So one it is. Otherwise, the maximum that library allows.
37. How often do you return books to the library unread?- Very, very rarely, and I’m usually really sorry when that happens. The only book which went unread last year was Darwin’s Evolution of Species, and that too only half-unread. Look at the bright side!
38. Favourite fictional character?- Lots of ’em! In Harry Potter alone, I could find, what, more than 16. However, I’ll settle for Atticus Finch from TKAM. Or Christopher from The Curious Case of the Dog in the Night-Time. Or Helen Graham from The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. Or the two Will Graysons.
39. Favourite fictional villain?- Bellatrix Lestrange from the Harry Potter series.
40. Books you’re most likely to bring on vacation?- Anything by P. G. Wodehouse. That guy has a seriously awesome sense of humour.
41. The longest time you’ve gone without reading?- Gods forbid, not more than a week. Books are my life-blood!
42. Name a book you could/would not finish?- Like I said earlier, I hate not finishing books. If you insist, though, check out #33 and #37.
43. What distracts you easily when you’re reading?- Nothing, except probably the news that a quiz was going on right then. Sometimes, you just have to prioritise.
44. Favourite film adaption of a novel?- Life of Pi, closely followed by HP2.
45. Most disappointing film adaption? I really haven’t watched that many film adaptations to form any opinion of the subject. I generally steer clear of them.
46. Most money you’ve ever spent in a bookstore at one time? Not really sure. If memory serves me rightly, though, then it’s 11k.
47. How often do you skim a book before reading it?- NEVER.
48. What would cause you to stop reading a book halfway through?- If it’s boring or I get caught up in some other work in between, then I’d stop. It’s never a permanent stop, though. I’ll be back someday.
49. Do you like to keep your books organized?- Yes, but there’s a difference between “like” and “do” which I know only too well! 😜
50. Do you prefer to keep books or give them away once they’ve been read?- KEEP THEM KEEP THEM KEEP THEM KEEP THEM! I re-read a lot. Like, a lot.
51. Are there any books that you’ve been avoiding?- Fifty Shades of Gray and all its sequels. Like the plague.
52. Name a book that made you angry?- Amish Tripathi’s The Immortals of Meluha. The book was fine throughout the beginning and the middle, but the ending? Damn too abrupt for me. In fact, it was the only reason why I didn’t read the other two books in the series.
53. A book you didn’t expect to like but did?- Incredibly, the Harry Potter series. I’d had this idea fixed in my head (don’t ask me how) that HP would be full of action and melodrama and all that sort of stuff. But I somehow overcame my prejudices and got hold of the first book, and, before I’d even finished the first line, I’d known I was on to a good thing. Also, to a lesser extent, Pride and Prejudice.
54. A book you expected to like but didn’t?- Agatha Christie’s Postern of Fate. It doesn’t live up to the other four Tommy and Tuppence novels. Although it was her last book, so we can probably make allowances.
55. Favourite guilt-free guilty pleasure reading?- I doubt I’ve read any books of that sort. Chetan Bhagat isn’t really a guilty pleasure, but I enjoy his works, although quite a few people don’t think he’s all that good.
So, that’s it! Feel free to try out this questionnaire yourself, and let me know what you think in the comments. Happy reading!