Twenty Questions About Me and My Books

I saw this fun questionnaire on Bookworm With A View – the questions didn’t look easy, but I thought I’d have a go and answer these myself. I’ve gone to Helen’s Book Shelf, where these questions came from, to find the original 20.

The Lady and the Poet by Maeve Haran1. Which book has been on your shelf the longest? The Lady and the Poet by Maeve Haran. I bought this about a year ago. I read some other books by Maeve Haran, which were contemporary fiction about family and relationships. This book is historical fiction and somehow it didn’t appeal to me much recently.

2. What is your current read, your last read and the book you’ll read next? I’m reading The Obscure Logic of the Heart by Priya Basil (a bit slow-going, but so far, OK). It’s about a illicit romance between a man and woman of differing Indian backgrounds.

I’ve just finished Hamlet’s Blackberry by William Powers, about escaping continual on-line connectedness. Next, I think I’ll read The Surrogates, a SF graphic novel (with a lot of text, too), about a future in which humans stay at home and use surrogates to which they are connected, who do the actual work.

Peony in Love by Lisa See3. What book did everyone like and you hated? Peony in Love by Lisa See. I didn’t like how the main character was a ghost looking back on previous events. I didn’t quite hate it but I couldn’t see anything good about the book.

4. Which book do you keep telling yourself you’ll read, but you probably won’t? To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Because I interact so much with American bloggers, I feel I’ve missed out not reading this, but hey, I’m Dutch, who cares, really?

5. Which book are you saving for “retirement?”  Well, if I ever get bored, I will get (back) to the old Russians: War and Peace, The Brothers Karamazov, that sort of thing. But I won’t get bored if my TBR pile keeps its current shape!

6. Last page: read it first or wait till the end? Oh horror: reading the last page first! No way. No way. I don’t even read the back cover once I get round to reading a book. I want to know nothing in advance.

7. Acknowledgements: waste of ink and paper or interesting aside? I tend to skim it, so they could leave it out as far as I’m concerned. Give these people a nice, signed copy and be done with it!

Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow by Peter Hoeg8. Which book character would you switch places with? Such a difficult question. Maybe Smilla in Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow by Peter Høeg. She keeps going in the face of trouble and even stows away on a ship heading to Greenland. A strong woman!

9. Do you have a book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time)? Not really. With some books I remember where I was or which period in my life it was that I read it, but nothing more than that.

10. Name a book you acquired in some interesting way. One Dutch book I received as a thank-you for volunteering in the school library when I was at high school. Never had another job as a librarian, sadly.

11. Have you ever given away a book for a special reason to a special person? Not that I can remember, but I do love giving books away! Here, I have too many, please share!

12. Which book has been with you to the most places? I read rather quickly so books don’t stay with me for very long. I do make sure I always have a book with me, though.

13. Any “required reading” you hated in high school that wasn’t so bad ten years later? What do you mean, hated? I love reading. I read the back of jam jars. I never minded the books we had to read for school.

14. What is the strangest item you’ve ever found in a book? A picture of an ultra sound scan (the thing they do to check on the baby when you’re pregnant). Actually, someone else found it in a book I gave them. It was a picture of my unborn son!

15. Used or brand new? A book’s a book, right? Well, really I like them new or gently read. Not too much wear and tear.

Duma Key by Stephen King16. Stephen King: Literary genius or opiate of the masses? Not a literary genius, but a genius of plot maybe. He often gets it right, but not always.

17. Have you ever seen a movie you liked better than the book? Yes, Eat, Pray, Love (Elizabeth Gilbert). I liked the book but I loved the movie.

18. Conversely, which book should NEVER have been introduced to celluloid? I think the Millennium Series (Stieg Larsson) worked better in print than on the big screen. The movies aren’t awful by any means, but I wasn’t impressed as I was with the books.

19. Have you ever read a book that’s made you hungry, cookbooks being excluded from this question? Although I’m a vegetarian, My Year of Meat by Ruth Ozeki really made me want to try out some recipes (but not the exact meals in the book).

20. Who is the person whose book advice you’ll always take? There are two book bloggers whose taste in books I quite closely share. They are Jackie of Farmlane Books (if she likes a book, I probably will, too) and JoV of Bibliojunkie (we often agree on books, too).

Also, a real-life friend of mine is good at handing me books that she thinks I’ll like. She’s usually right.

I’m curious: please answer one of the questions above

to tell me a bit about yourself.

About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

38 Responses to Twenty Questions About Me and My Books

  1. Jordyn says:

    I AM DOING THIS WHOLE THING. It will be up in like two days or something idk.


  2. Cindy says:

    Enjoyed reading this 🙂

  3. nymfaux says:

    What an awesome survey and way to get to know other bloggers!!!! 😀 as soon as I started reading it I had comments…
    1) You must really switch out your books A LOT if your oldest is only a year!!!! 2) I’m pretty sure a Bruce Willis movie came out pretty recently based on the Surrogates 3)Yes, To Kill a Mockingbird is definitely a classic–I read that as a kid and really enjoyed it–now I want to reread it! lol 😉 of course, you could always watch the movie…that’s pretty good, too! 😉 6) SO AGREE!!!! 8) I haven’t read the book, but over here, it’s called “Smilla’s Sense of Snow”–I always find it interesting how they decide to translate things 😉

    so much fun!!!! 😀

    • Leeswammes says:

      Nymfaux, I only started my blog last year. Before that, I used to read what I had before getting new books. I also am in the middle of the Off The Shelf challenge where I try to read all the books that were unrad by January, 1st this year. There were only 31, so it’s not so hard. The Lady and the Poet is one of those that need to be read still!

      Yes, I saw the movie The Surrogates which I really enjoyed, so I was keen to see the graphic novel that inspired it.

      • nymfaux says:

        Wow!!! That’s fantastic that you’ve gotten through so many of your books!!!
        –Also, good to know you like the movie–I’ve been on the fence about whether or not I wanted to see it, but leaning more toward seeing it!!! 🙂

      • Leeswammes says:

        Nymfaux, I love dystopia and SF (and movies with Bruce Willis – was he in it? I can’t remember. I don’t care for him, just for his type of movies 🙂 ) and this movie was good if you like that genre.

    • nymfaux says:

      this was such a fun post!!!–I just posted my answers on my blog!!! 🙂


  4. Tes says:

    I love it when I found something in the second-hand books I bought. When my sister used to find 1000 bath (30$) in on of the book I bought 🙂 I often find notes and some writing in pieces of paper sometimes they’re so interesting that kept me try decoding them 🙂

  5. Judith, I loved your answers! Reading posts like this are enjoyable, we learn a little more about each other with every post but 20 questions is a months learning in one day. 🙂

    I saw another question post recently, now that life is settling back to ‘normal’ I should work on a few Q&A. 🙂

    I also enjoyed the movie for Eat, Pray, Love… but I did enjoy the book too. Tough one!

    • Leeswammes says:

      Mari, I liked it when I saw the questionnaire on your blog so I “stole” it. These Q&A are interesting, aren’t they? I hope to see a few more on other people’s blogs.

  6. Amanda says:

    I love this! I’m going to borrow this for my blog. 🙂
    As for To Kill A Mockingbird – you should read it. LOL I’m currently (slowly) working my way through the classics we didn’t read in high school. (I didn’t go to college.) We did read TKAM in school and I enjoyed it. I’ve recently read Catcher In the Rye and The Great Gatsby but I wasn’t overly impressed with either of them, so apparently the “classics” don’t always appeal to me. But TKAM is great. (Says yet another American. LOL)

  7. Louise says:

    It’s always nice to know a bit more about bloggers who we follow 😉 I’ll answer question 9.. Matilda by R Dahl.I was given this book as a birthday present and it always reminds me of my nans house in the countryside, lots of corn fields, tractors and lazy childhood days..ooh and how when I’d walk through the fields after it had been cut and the stems of the corn would catch your ankles, ouch 😉

  8. Marvelous answers — I loved that you picked Smilla — she’s a marvelous heroine! (I love that book.)

    • Leeswammes says:

      Ah, another Smilla fan, Audra? When I first heard about the book, I just had to have it, and it didn’t disappoint. It is one of my favorite books, in fact.

      BTW, I severely disliked every other book I tried to read by this author, which is very odd.

  9. Great answers; impossible to say which one is best.

    Okay, let me answer # 8: I´d like to switch places with Jimmy Perez from Ann Cleeves´ Shetland series – in order to see the place.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Dorte, that’s a good reason: so you can see the place! I don’t know the series, but the Shetland Isles… I’d love to go there. Now that I think of it, I could have time travelled!

  10. shelleyrae@ Book'd Out says:

    Love reading your answers Judith – some of those are tough questions! I’m going to answer two for you I think:
    Last page: read it first or wait till the end?
    Like you I’m horrified at the thought of reading the last page first and I also avoid the blurb when I start to read

    16. Stephen King: Literary genius or opiate of the masses?
    My definition of a literary genius is an author who gets people to read because they want to read which means they are more likely to keep reading – I think there is an unappreciated art to being able to write a book that appeals to a mass cross section of people – i’d choose Stephen King over Charles Dickens any day 🙂

    • Leeswammes says:

      Shelleyrae, thanks, it’s fun to see your answers. I know there are people who check the end of a book first but I think they’re a minority.

      I think in his time, Charles Dickens wrote for the masses too, but now we find him a bit harder to read because of the old-fashioned language. With your definition of literary genius, I think you’re right. It’s amazing how popular his books are without being trash.

  11. Nadine Nys says:

    You definitely have to read To Kill a Mockinbird, Judith, it is so good.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Nadine, thanks for your European opinion. I think I’ll leave it on my wishlist, to start with (rather than taking it off, as I was planning). 🙂

  12. I might go answer these questions too. I feel the same about To Kill A Mockingbird but it’s not just the Americans who rave about it. I do have it on my shelves to read but it’s been there a while…

  13. RFW says:

    Great questions, but too much to think about for me 🙂 Made it as far as the first question – on my shelf and still not read – but someday – Faber’s The Crimson Petal and the White. Have you read it?

    • Leeswammes says:

      Yes, RFW, I have. It’s a really good historical fiction. But it’s BIG so you need to take your time. If I remember well, the beginning is a slow read but later on it becomes faster. Definitely worth a read.

  14. Thank you for the kind mention. I always trust your advise too. I think you are the closest match to my reading taste I’ve ever found!

    I think I might agree with you on Lisa See. I have tried a couple of her books, but never got past the first few pages. I keep thinking I’m just in the wrong mood as everyone else seems to love them, but perhaps we’re just not suited to them?

    Sorry for being so slow to reply – I’m on holiday at the moment so have very little time for blogging. :- Hopefully things will be back to normal in a couple of weeks time when my boys go back to school.

    (PS. The link you have to my blog isn’t quite right – you need to add the www. :-))

    • Leeswammes says:

      Jackie, thanks for your comment (I will have a look at the link – how embarrassing).

      I did like another book I read by Lisa See, but this one was too odd for me.

      Enjoy you holiday! Here the kids have been back to school for a week already (they started their holiday July 3rd or so). My boys are making their homework right now. 🙂

  15. Tomorrow there will appear a (translated) version of these questions on our blog, answered by Ellen. There’s a link to your and Helen’s blog included as well.

  16. Pingback: 18 vragen over Ellen en boeken! « Boeklover

  17. winstonsdad says:

    A nice insight into your reading

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