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Booking Through Thursday: Meme with a meme

This week’s BTT offers a meme itself:

What was the last book you bought?

The Pets by Bragi Olafsson, part of my Open Letter subscription. As for store-bought books, it would be Marilynne Robinson’s Home. (One of the budgetary advantages of an excellent local library and publisher review copies.)

Name a book you have read MORE than once

Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler, one of my Desert Island Books.

Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it?

Not really. The closest would be Notes to Myself by Hugh Prather (also a Desert Island Book).

How do you choose a book? eg. by cover design and summary, recommendations or reviews

Generally the following: subject/story, author, summary and reviews/recommendations. Cover design plays little, if any, role.

Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction?

As I noted earlier this week, that has changed over the years to the point that I don’t know that I have a strong preference. The subject, story or author are primary, not necessarily fiction or non-fiction.

What’s more important in a novel – beautiful writing or a gripping plot?

Good, crisp writing. It need no be beautiful but what good is a gripping plot if the author’s style (or lack thereof) makes you quit reading?

Most loved/memorable character (character/book)

Probably Emilio Sandoz from Mary Doria Russell’s The Sparrow or Winston Smith from 1984.

Which book or books can be found on your nightstand at the moment?

Considering my “nightstand” is a three-shelf “to be read” bookshelf, there are way, way too many (more than 30, I hate to admit). But thanks to my local library, the small shelves in the headboard of the bed currently hold largely Bibliolust books:

What was the last book you’ve read, and when was it?

I finished The Forever War by Dexter Filkins last Sunday morning.

Have you ever given up on a book half way in?

Yes, although I don’t usually wait that long. The most recent book I gave up on (last month) I did so about a third of the way in.


Sanity is not statistical.

George Orwell, 1984

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