Friday, January 25, 2008

The Reading Meme That Took Me an Hour to Fill Out

Tagged by Susan of Bloggin' 'bout Books
Meme by Eva of A Striped Armchair

By the way, can anyone tell me where the word "meme" comes from? Is it short for something? Does it indicate "me" "me" because we answer questions about ourselves? I am clearly ignorant of some of this terminology! I just know they can be lots of fun!

Which book do you irrationally cringe away from reading, despite seeing only positive reviews?

Lolita by Nabokov. It's in the top ten of many "best" lists, and it's my local library's pick for the classic's book club in February, but I don't know if I could enjoy a book about an older man being obsessed with a young girl.

If you could bring three characters to life for a social event (afternoon tea, a night of clubbing, perhaps a world cruise), who would they be and what would the event be?

My idea of a social event is an evening at home! But who would I invite? Will Ladislaw of Middlemarch (dreamy!), Levin of Anna Karenina (we could really bond), and Snape of Harry Potter(to tell him I never doubted him, and perhaps suggest some good shampoo.)

(Borrowing shamelessly from the Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde): You are told you can't die until you read the most boring novel on the planet. While this immortality is great for awhile, eventually you realize it's past time to die. What book would you expect to get you a nice grave?

Of Human Bondage by Maugham. I read 300-400 agonizing pages before I accepted the fact that I didn't need to torture myself any longer.

Come on, we've all been there. What book have you pretended, or at least hinted, that you've read, when in fact you've been nowhere near it?

Usually, it's the opposite for me--books that I'm embarrassed to admit I've read!

As an addition to the last question, has there been a book you really thought you had read only to realize when you read a review about it/go to "reread" it that you haven't? Which book?

My memory is so bad I can't remember one!

You're interviewing for the post of Official Book Advisor to some VIP (who's not a big reader). What's the first book you'd recommend and why? (If you feel like you have to know the person, go ahead and personalize the VIP)

To Kill A Mockingbird--to me one of the most perfect books every written.

A good fairy comes and grants you one wish: you will have perfect reading comprehension in the foreign language of your choice. Which language do you go with?

I don't know--I'm still trying for perfect reading comprehension in English! Other than that, I would pick Russian.

A mischevious fairy comes and says you must choose one book that you will reread once a year for the rest of your life (you can read other books as well). Which book would you pick?

That is a really hard question!! For a geeky answer I would say The Lord of the Rings. For mental health I would say Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, and It's All Small Stuff (I have anxiety issues!). For a hopelessly romantic answer I would say Jane Eyre. To keep my parenting in line I would say Parenting With Love and Logic.

I know the book blogging community, and all its challenges, have pushed my reading borders. What's one "bookish" thing you discovered from book blogging (maybe a new genre, or author, or new appreciation for cover art - anything)?

I have just been relieved to find out that there are others who are just as obsessed with books as I am! I have found that it is hard to resist reading challenges!

The good fairy is back for one final visit. Now, she's granting you your dream library! Describe it. Is everything leatherbound? Is it full of first edition hardcovers? Pristine trade paperbacks? Perhaps a few favorite authors have inscribed their works? Go ahead - let your imagination run free.

Well, as long as we're talking about fairies and magic, my dream library would go with me wherever I went, so that if I were waiting in line at the store, driving kids around, waiting at the doctor's office, I would have any book available at the snap of a finger. I would want access to any audiobooks, (currently I am at the mercy of what the library has.) I do have an irrational weakness for books that have the rough-edged pages. Is there a technical name for those? Sadly, I would have to admit that I would want a refrigerator in my library. And maybe a permanent chef. And I would want it to be soundproof.


  1. I agree, Will from Middlemarch is dreamy, and I LOLed about suggesting a good shampoo to Snape! Nice job!

  2. Good answers! I love the idea of a library that goes where you go. I've needed that SOOO many times. I didn't think of soundproofing - that's a major necessity, especially when you have kids.

  3. I love your answers. I'd want my library to have a refrigerator too :)

  4. I love the music that began to play when I visited your blog. It's beautiful.

  5. Yes, To Kill a Mockingbird is the most perfect book ever written. So perfect in fact that Haper Lee need never to write again.

    I like your idea about inviting Snape to the dinner party. He wouldn't be very talkative, but he is in desperate need of a make-over.

  6. Snape really does need a shampoo but I'm not touching that head.

    A library that travels with you is such a great idea.

  7. I want a travel library, too, and I can't believe I didn't think of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD. You're right: perfection between two covers.

  8. I read about the background/meaning of the word 'meme' in one of the Science of Discworld books by Terry Pratchett a couple of years ago. Basically, a meme is like a gene, except that it holds cultural information, like ideas/thoughts/practices/songs/&c, rather than genetic information. The meme is then spread through cultural evolution, much like genes are spread through genetic evolution. Pretty neat, no?

    I have the Of Human Bondage screen adaption from 1934 just waiting to be watched (I have a soft spot for Leslie Howard). I hope it's not as boring as you found the book!

  9. Love,
    Thank you so much for answering my question! What a great concept. I hope you enjoy Of Human Bondage. I think I tried to watch it once and it was very dark, but I could be thinking of something else. I do know people who loved the book, so it could just be me!

  10. I like your blog! :-)

    I saw your question about a meme, and found a good explanation here:

    And meme is pronounced to rhyme with *dream* or you can pronounce it like mem in *memory*. I'd hate for you to say *me me* like I did for a long time, only to be haughtily told you weren't pronouncing it right. :-) I'd never say that to anyone, but I have an amazing knack for finding the people who will. :-)