Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Ella's Comfort Zone Meme (illustrated by Ella) & Six Things

The incomparable Ella created this meme.

What kind of a book are you most comfortable reading? Contemporary literary fiction. Short stories. I-survived-my-crazy-family memoirs.

What kind of a book do you love to hate? Anything that's supposed to inspire me or improve me in any fashion.

What was the last book you surprised yourself by liking? Hmm. I expect to like everything I read; otherwise, why bother? I did not expect Oscar and Lucinda to be a contender for favorite book of the year, though, simply because The History of the Kelly Gang never clicked with me--and it should have!

What was the last book you surprised yourself by disliking? Silas Marner. I love Middlemarch and Daniel Deronda, so I expected to like this one as well. Before that, Dreaming in Cuban (although I suspect this was just a victim of my mood; I set aside a lot of books back in the spring because it was so difficult to please me then), Eileen Favorite's The Heroines and Anne Enright's The Wig My Father Wore. I've liked everything else I've read this year.

What would be the worst book to be marooned on a desert island with? Probably one of those books in the Left Behind series. Or Who Moved My Cheese? A calculus textbook would be pretty bad, too.

What book would you take with you if you suspected you might be marooned in the near future? Howards End.

What forces you to read outside your comfort zone? Having nothing else on hand to read. A friend's recommendation. Guilt.


And now for the Six Things About Me meme. Jeanne tagged me for this ever so long ago. Since I'm tres boring and I did a Eight Random Things about me last year and I haven't done one interesting thing since, I've attempted to keep this random list about books and reading.

1. I discovered reading forums in 1998. Vikram Chandra's Red Earth and Pouring Rain has the honor of being the first book I read after hearing someone enthuse about it online.

2. I read Erik Segal's Love Story over and over when I was a teenager. I wonder if it would still make me cry? I obsessed an unhealthy amount over Judith Guest's Ordinary People during those years, too.

3. Judy Blume's Forever! My friends and I went a little bit nuts over this book when it first came out. I still have to tamp down an inner smirk whenever I hear the name Ralph.

4. My current read is Gore Vidal's Burr, which I'm liking quite a lot.

5. I ought to reread Paul Bowles's The Sheltering Sky. I read it for a class in college, but then Doris Betts said, Oops, no time to discuss. Just like the sky, that book went completely over my head.

6. People were continually telling me during the years I worked as a reporter that one day they were going to write a book about the two most inbred incestuous infamous families in our neck of the woods. I'd read that book; unfortunately no one's bothered to write it.


  1. Well, when are you going to get started writing "that book"? It sounds fascinating!

  2. Oh! I forgot about Ralph! LOL!

  3. I don't remember Ralph. The thing that stuck with me was the bathroom scene with the aftershave. Not sure why I remember that most, but there you go.

  4. I had no idea you used to be a reporter! I bet you have some interesting stories to tell. I used to love those lurid teenage stories about runaways or other depressing subjects. And the 80s was really a laid back era...how strange. I loved everything I could get my hands on by Judy Blume, too. She always knew just what I was worrying about--how uncanny for an adult! I try to keep that in mind with my niece.

  5. Oh, and I'd like to reread The Sheltering Sky, too!

  6. I love the way you did the meme! Thanks! I didn't see it until today, because I was on vacation and didn't take a laptop (gasp).

  7. If you take a laptop with you on vacation is it really a vacation?

    Hope you had a wonderful time!


As a reader I cherish the fantasy of one day stopping acquiring books, of subsisting only on what is already stashed away in the crammed lar...