Final Armchair BEA

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NoneOn this final day, we encourage you to wrap-up the week with your favorites and highlights of the week.  Did you learn something new?  Did you connect with a new-to-you blogger?  What was your favorite discussion topic?  Do you have ideas for future years?  You can write your own blog post and link it up, but we also encourage you to take our end-of-event survey.

I enjoyed this week SO much!  I did learn something new- Use wikimedia commons for any book cover/art work I want to use.  It was also helpful to read what other bloggers thought were the “guidelines” to blogging ethics.  I also got a lot of helpful hints for tackling my fear of widgets!

I was lucky enough to connect with many new bloggers, specifically Lisa over at Bookshelf Fantasies and Emma at Words and Peace.  I also connected more with Jennifer at The Relentless Reader, whom I fist met up with at the Dewey read a  thon!  I love the suggestions and recommendations that came my was-thanks to EVERYONE who left me a comment, or replied to one of mine.

My favorite discussion topic?  I actually liked them all.  I was most comfortable with genre fiction, but liked the way I had to actually think and work a little for the other topics!

Future years?  Not sure- I thought this went great- and I loved having 2 topics each day.

Thanks again!!!

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Armchair BEA- Keeping it Real

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NoneToday’s discussion is Keeping it Real-Today, we’re interested in knowing how you address that question, especially if you’ve been doing this for a while. If you have been around for years, how do you keep your material fresh? How do you continue to keep blogging fun? How do you not only grow an audience, but how do you keep them coming back for more? Think about it, post about it, link to it, and read about how other bloggers are keeping it real, fresh, and fun. Maybe we can inspire each other today!

I began this blog as a way to keep track of what books I read.  There was one too many times where I bought or borrowed a book, opened it up, only to realize a few pages in (or chapters) that I had read it before.  I tried writing a list in a pretty notebook, but found it boring.  When I first started looking into starting a blog, I was amazed at how much was involved-plus I am not the most tech-savy person.  That being said, I was very nervous when I finally took the plunge and posted my first review.  I looked into what I was supposed to do to get viewers, what sites to join, where to get ARCs, etc.  I was pretty overwhelmed at first-and even worse, I found very little time to read!!  I have just begun to find a nice routine, so I am really enjoying it now.  I definitely want to grow my audience and make the blog itself better, but I will do so slowly, at my own pace.  I am really liking meeting new people and surprised at how many I have things in common with some, besides reading.

Lat month I took part in the Dewey 24 hour readathon, which was a blast.  I am so glad I decided to take part in the Armchair BEA, and I al looking forward to  Bloggiesta!

 

Armchair BEA Day 5- Children’s Books

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NoneToday is Day 5 of the Armchair BEA and today’s topic is Children’s Literature.  I am going to separate this into two sub-categories:  Books for little ones and books for older kids- and then again specifically for boys and girls.

To read to little ones, some of my favorites are:

Goodnight Moon, Green Eggs & Ham, The Giving Tree, The Missing Piece, 23772 370493 250px-Goodnightmoon

One thing that I am so happy about, and know they get from me is my kid’s love of reading.  As we speak, my son is reading Killing Kennedy, and my daughter is well into The Elite.

For older kids in general-

The entire Harry Potter Series, A Wrinkle in Time, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, The Hunger Games

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For BOYS specifically-

My Father’s Dragon, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Artemis Fowl, Inkheart

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For GIRLS specifically

Anne of Green Gable, A Little Princess, Nancy Drew series, Little Women

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What books did you love as a child?  What will you make sure your kids read?

Armchair BEA Day 4- Ethics & Non Fiction

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armchairbea21

At Armchair BEA today’s topic is Ethics.  We were given prompts to the discussions that asked us to give recommendations to new bloggers to ensure credit is give where it tis due.  This is a topic that interests me a great deal, as I have only been blogging 3 months, and wonder this myself.  So rather than write about a topic I do not have much knowledge on, I am instead going over to Armchair BEA at http://www.armchairbea.com and read what more seasoned bloggers had to say.

Our genre today is NON FICTION.

Uh oh, I thought, I’m not going to have much to say on this since I read mostly fiction.  Then I rethought it, and am going to give it a shot!

Is there any specific type your prefer or dislike?

Well, I thought, I don’t like memoirs, but then I remembered I read The Glass Castle  I really enjoyed it.  Then I thought-one of my favorite books was The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion.  If you have ever lost anyone close to you-you have to read this.  Ms. Didion is an amazing writer and really describes what I thought was indescribable.   I also enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert (though I did like the eat and love part more than the pray-just saying).

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Do I like true crime– goodness no!  But wait, I did read

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In Cold Blood by Truman Capote and really liked it.  Oh yeah- and recently I read

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In the Garden of Beast, by Erik Larson, about the American ambassador and his family living in Nazi Berlin right before WWII, which was AWESOME!!

I also read The Lost Dogs- Michael’s Vicks Dogs and Their Tale of Rescue and Redemption by Jim Gorant.  It was a well written book of a horrible story.

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As for historical non fiction, well, I do enjoy it, but can’t for the life of me think of one book right now, which is a little embarrassing since I was a History major, and taught U.S. History in high school.

Finally, biographies?  NO, I do not read them.  Wait- that’s right- I loved 6900Tuesdays with Morrie– but wasn’t that more a memoir?

Well, I guess I do read non fiction, and enjoy it quite a bit!

What non fiction would you recommned for me?

Armchair BEA Day 3!!

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armchairbea21

Today is Day 3 of the Armchair BEA!  Today’ s Genre is Literary Fiction.  When I saw this I was a little confused-hmmm, what is literary fiction exactly?  So, I do what everyone does when they find themselves in need on information- I googled it.  As best as I can put together, literary fiction is- “critically acclaimed”, serious, focuses on subject, not plot, “based in language”, lyrical and poetic, and focused on character development.  Ok- this I can work with.

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So far this year, I have enjoyed The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin-  https://turnthepagereviews.com/2013/04/17/the-orchardist/

I also really like Silver Lining Playbook by Matthew Quick-

 https://turnthepagereviews.com/2013/04/01/silver-lining-playbook/

In the future, I would like to read The Perks of Being a Wallflower and Life of Pi. I also can’t wait to get my hands on And The Mountains Echoed!

For someone just getting into literary fiction, I would recommend The Cider House Rules by John Irving or The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kinsolver.  Also- The Kite Runner was amazing!!

I honestly have trouble differentiating between genres sometimes.  Another book many would call a classic, but I think qualifies, would be Pride & Prejudice.

I think the label “literary fiction” can be off putting, as if you have to be a Literature major in order to read certain books.  I think that is ridiculous!  Anyone can read any book, as long as they enjoy it.  If it feels like work, or a chore, then it is not meant to be.

Maybe I should remind myself of that as I try to tackle more “classics” 🙂

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

The Perks of Being a Wallflower (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cover of "Life of Pi"

Cover of Life of Pi

Cover of "The Poisonwood Bible"

Cover of The Poisonwood Bible

Cover of "The Cider House Rules"

Cover of The Cider House Rules

Armchair BEA- Day 2

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None

Today’s post deals with Blogger Development. Unfortunately, since I just started this blog about 3 months ago, I only HAVE questions about blogger development!

I began this blog as a way to keep track of what I was reading-simple.  What I discovered is an amazing community of bloggers, and memes and, challenges- OH MY!  I was first surprised about how much time  and effort I would dedicate to getting the blog rolling.  I was also surprised how I had to make time to read, where that used to be what I did when there was nothing else going on.  As of right now, I am still struggling a bit with certain aspects of the blog itself.  I am not the most tech savy person, so I chose to use WordPress, since I heard from other bloggers that it was simple.  It is, but I also find it a bit limiting.  I don’t have a great understanding of how to use the widgets (how do I get those little buttons for goodreads, email, and Facebook?!?!)- but I am scared to death to self host.  Another little hurdle I have encountered is the reliance on e-readers.  I personally LOVE real books, but found as I joined Net Galley, that lots of ARCs are only offered for e-readers.  Thank goodness I have a busy 13 year old who has been kind enough to lend out her kindle a few times a week!

I hope in the next few months to do the following: ~figure out darn widgets and get the blog looking the way I want and join a few more memes challenges as a way to reach more bloggers and learn from them-when is Bloggiesta?

Genre

Today’s genre focus is on genre fiction.   From Armchair BEA-Genre fiction is kind of wide category. Science fiction, fantasy, horror, crime, romance.  Though often dismissed or ridiculed by the more “literary” minded, these novels often deal with complex themes and issues and some of the world’s most beloved authors write in these categories. Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Anne Rice, Deborah Harkness, Douglas Adams, P D James, J R Ward and George R R Martin to name a few.  Genre fiction can take us to places we never imagine, experience scenarios we’ve always dreamed of and open up new worlds to explore.

I enjoy many types of genre fiction when I actually think about it.  My favorites would be-fantasy and historical fiction.  in fantasy, my favorites are the Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings series.  I also loved the Hunger Games trilogy.  The following I would list under historical fiction, though sometimes I am hesitant and worry that I am categorizing incorrectly: To Kill a Mockingbird, The Shadow of the Wind, Cry, the Beloved Country, and mixed with a little romance-Gone With The Wind and Pride & Prejudice (honorable mention-The Song of Achilles).

I would love to hear from you about what types of genre fiction YOU prefer!

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Armchair BEA!!!!

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NoneI am SO excited to have signed up for this year’s Armchair BEA at-http://www.armchairbea.com   For those of us unable to attend the annual BEA in New York City, we are lucky to have the opportunity to participate in this.

 

To start off, they asked each blogger to answer som questions to introduce themselves- here it goes-

 

1.  Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging?

 

My name is Kerri and I have just started blogging three months ago.  I began my blog to keep track of the books I was reading.  I have been reading books for pleasure since I was eleven years old.  I never realized there were so many people who love reading as much as I do until I satrted reading other blogs!

 

2.  Where in the world are you blogging from? Tell a random fact or something special about your current location. Feel free to share pictures.

 

I am blogging from a small town in Northwestern New Jersey. It is a quaint little town with lots of small shops and local farms.  It still seems strange to live in the “country” since I grew up in NYC.

 

3.  What are you currently reading, or what is your favorite book you have read so far in 2013?

 

Wow- hard one-I have read some really great books so far this year- I really loved The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow and The Lost Wife.

 

4.  Tell us one non-book-related thing that everyone reading your blog may not know about you.

 

I have been married 18 years, and I am the mother of two teenagers- yikes!  My dream is to own a bookstore and live at the beach.

 

5.  Which is your favorite post that you have written that you want everyone to read?

 

My favorite post was-Honestly, Do You Keep Reading It?- I asked what you do when you find yourself reading a book you just do not like/aren’t into.  I love it becuase I got so much feedback.  I loved hearing from so many people what they do when they find themselves in that situation- which I think we have all been in

 

https://turnthepagereviews.com/2013/04/10/honestly-do-you-keep-reading-it?

 

 

 

Classics

 

Today’s topic is “The Classic”.

 

from Armchair BEA-

 

Fans of classics love them for their universal themes, their understanding of the human condition, the writing, and sometimes for reasons that can’t be explained. Why, reader, do you love classics? 

Today, tell us all the reasons why you love classic literature. What are your favorite classics? If you could give a list of classics to someone who claims to hate them to make them change their mind, what would be on it? How would you convince them to give classics a try? And why do you keep coming back to those old favorites?

 

 

 

I do love reading classics.  I think sometimes I get so caught up reading the newest and latest books, that I need to make myself pull back, and reach for a classic.  I feel something is a classic that stands the test of time, inspires readers, and reach beyond just one genre.  Classics can be romances, mysteries, science fiction.  I think I began loving classic in which school.  My 11th grade Lit teacher-Hi Mrs. Chapman- inspired this love.  Most kids (gasp) did not appreciate her much, but when we finished reading Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein, I knew she was going to be one of my all time favorite teachers.  As I continued trough school, I was able to read amazing books.

 

Some of my FAVORITE classics are-

 

Anything Austen- I love everything written by Jane Austen- with Pride & Prejudice being my all time favorite.

 

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald- took a class in college that centered around this time period and got to love all Fitzgerald and Hemingway.

 

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee- Atticus Finch (to me) is the epitome of the perfect man.

 

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

 

And of course- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley(thanks again Mrs. Chapman!)

 

 

 

There are certain classic that I have been able to tackle for one reason or the other-

 

Moby Dick

 

Great Expectations

 

Wuthering Heights

 

 

 

I want to join The Classics Club, but have been hesitant up to now.

 

For a first timer, I would recommend To Kill a Mockingbird, Little Women, or Pride & Prejudice.

 

 

 

What are some of your favorite classics?

Frankenstein

Frankenstein (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cover of "Little Women (Andre Deutsch Cla...

Cover of Little Women (Andre Deutsch Classics)

Cover of "To Kill a Mockingbird: 50th Ann...

Cover via Amazon

English: Title page. Austen, Jane. Pride and P...

English: Title page. Austen, Jane. Pride and Prejudice. London: George Allen, 1894. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cover of "The Great Gatsby"

Cover of The Great Gatsby