Friday, October 15, 2010

Thursday Book Questions, Pt. 5 + knitting frenzy

Not surprisingly, I stated last week I would try to post more regularly...and it didn't quite happen. I still have posts in draft that I want to finish, but this week has been one of the busiest I have had this semester at the library. I will get to the draft posts soon enough, I am sure. Plus, I have begun knitting again, thanks to a knitting circle of lovely ladies which began last Sunday. Here are two images that capture where I'm at, not just with my knitting but with everything (note the haphazardness that is my beautiful, nutty life right now):

The green work-in-progress will be, I hope, a halfway decent hat. The black finished project (on the right, hard to see clearly) is also a hat, but it's a bit too big to wear, And the gray hat between the two (looking rather crumpled) is store-bought and machine made--it's in the pile as a point of reference. Even if it takes imperfect hat after imperfect hat to perfect a knitting pattern for my signature slouchy hat (and no, the person in the picture at this link is not me), I am determined. I will eventually knit for myself a hat that fits, is my style, and which is wearable--oh yes I will.

Onto Thursday Book Questions, Pt. 5. Jenna just posted this week's installment, and the questions are getting more and more interesting. For my previous answers, see Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4. Here is Part 5:

21. What will inspire you to recommend a book?
I will recommend a book to someone if I know their reading tastes and the book is one I know they, in particular, will love. Another situation where you will find me recommending books is when I love a book so much I can't stop talking about it--in which case, not only won't I stop talking about it, but I'll try to shut myself up (many times, though never quite successfully) by saying, "Well, you should just read it yourself so you know what I'm talking about!"

22. Favorite genre?
Fantasy, usually the YA variety, though as a teen I read "non-YA" fantasy as well. These days I find that (good; read: not trite and overly formulaic) YA fantasy tales get to the point more succinctly than their "adult" counterparts. For instance, as much as I love Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series from my teen years (a non-YA fantasy series), it is taking me literally years to finish reading the series, which will finally be completed sometime in the next few years. Why, you might ask? Because the plot is so complicated with so many characters, I don't remember the details about each character enough to just dive in where I left off and know what is going on. Some day though...

23. Genre you rarely read (but wish you did)? [And yes, I am the grammar geek that just corrected the placement of the question mark in this question.]
Probably science fiction. Besides spending a summer reading this genre for an undergraduate course back in 2005, and my all-too-brief inhalation of Orson Scott Card's Ender Wiggin books* earlier this year, I haven't read much sci fi, but I definitely want to read more.

24. Favorite biography?
Yeaaa.... if I'm honest, I'm not a huge reader of biographies. I suppose one that really, really affected me deeply is an English translation of the biography of St. Nektarios of Aegina, called Saint Nektarios: The Saint of our Century. Talk about a life lived in complete humility and love.

25. Have you ever read a self-help book?
Hmmm, I don't recall ever having read one, though perhaps I have and I just don't remember.

*Okay, wow, in the Wikipedia list of Ender stories at the link I just dug up and posted here, there are a slew of stories that Card published only online. I had no idea about these! Talk about happy discoveries! I know what I'll be reading whenever I need a break from my usual Internet reading over the next few weeks. (And yes, the Ender universe Card created is so rich, any tale he tells within it is worth reading to add to the tapestry that is his sub-creation.)

Update: It turns out all of the Card short stories that were published online are behind pay walls. Drats.


  1. I love Saint Nektarios: The Saint of our Century. What an inspiring book! Another one of my favorite books is Saint John Wonderworker...a book about his life and miracles. Not sure if you've read it yet, but if not, I highly recommend it! I read it this past April/May, and it has influenced me in more ways than I can say. :)

  2. If you like Orson Scott Card, pick up his Red Prophet series. It was a strange combination of colonial American Christianity and folk magic. I've actually only read the first two (because the library here didn't have them in) but they were fun!

    I've started the Foundation series by Isaac Asimov and it IMMEDIATELY sucks you in. I'll let you know if I like it.

    Fr. A like the first two Dunes, but he said the rest were crap. Okay, he didn't actually say "crap" but that's essentially what all those big words meant.

    I solved the WOT plot problem by rereading all the books when a new one came out. Since I came into the series at book 4... I practically have the whole thing memorized. And I enjoyed every second of it! ;) I have REALLY liked the way Egwyne's character has evolved over the course of the series. Aviendha was my favorite character, but Egwyne definitely caught up after the last couple books. I think Sanderson did a pretty good job on his last one. I'm glad he didn't try to cram all of that in one book. After fifteen years of entering that world, I'm a little sad to think it will be finished in just a couple more books! Ok. Need to stop. Definitely approaching the nerddom line.

  3. Nicole: I saw the Red Prophet series in Borders when I was shopping for the Ender books, and they definitely caught my eye. I will have to give them a go at some point.

    Re: WOT, actually your comment reignited my interest in the series, so I thought perhaps I'd try reading the plot synopses at Wikipedia to see if they would do the trick of "catching me up." I got as far as Fires of Heaven when I read that Moiraine and Lanfear "supposedly" died when they disappeared through the archway-thingy... and that was when I closed the browser and said, okay I need to just reread the books. I have only ever gotten as far as Crossroads of Twilight so I actually have no idea what Moiraine's fate was, and I don't want to learn anything about it through a Wikipedia article.

    I think, sometime after the new year (since my fiction reading list is packed between now and then), I will pick up WOT again, after being away from it for a good five years.