Bookish Stuff

Bibliophilia – The tag

I decided to borrow this tag from Prats given that I am a bibliophile and that I have been missing in action from the blogosphere for a while. So here goes…

Favourite childhood book? Malory Towers series. And St. Clare’s series. By Enid Blyton.

What are you reading right now? Wonders of a Godless World by Andrew McGahan and re-reading To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.

Bad book habit? Unable to go to the toilet without one. Not to pee of course.

Do you have an e-reader? No. Never. Nope. Nah. Did I say no?

Do you prefer to read one book at a time or several at once? Prefer reading one at a time but lately have been experimenting with more than one due to book club commitments. However, I notice that the more interesting book ultimately wins.

Have your reading habits changed since starting a blog? Not really…if anything, I have been buying a lot more books thanks to all the book reviews out there!

Least favourite book you read this year (so far)? Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger

Favourite book you’ve read this year?
The Messenger by Markus Zusak and A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry

How often do you read out of your comfort zone? Mostly when it’s related to the book club. Or if someone highly recommends a book I normally wouldn’t read.

What is your reading comfort zone? Fiction. I think the genre I like is referred to as literary fiction in the book stores.

Can you read on the bus? Yes. And the train. In fact, I sometimes wished I worked in a place I could just take public transport to. Imagine how many books I could get through!!!

Favourite place to read? The beach. I love lying in the sun after a cool swim and then drying out with my favourite book. The sound of the waves. The smell of the ocean. The feel of the sand and sun. Bliss. Shame it’s only a few months a year.

What is your policy on book lending?
Only to those who I know will handle it with care and respect.

Do you ever dog-ear books?
Used to when I was younger but no longer do it.

Do you ever write in the margins of your books? The only time I did that was when I was studying English literature and had bought second-hand copies of Oliver Twist, Mill on the Floss and Grapes of wrath. Didn’t enjoy the subject or the books and wasn’t too fussed about writing on it.

Not even with textbooks? I probably did write in some of my textbooks at school and a few psych texts.

What is your favourite language to read in?

What makes you love a book?
Plot, Meaning, Characters.

What will inspire you to recommend a book? If it’s got a great message or is just an awesome read, I will recommend it.

Favourite genre? Literary Fiction and Thriller/Mystery novels. However, lately, the latter no longer intrigues me as I tend to solve the mysteries myself.

Genre you rarely read (but wish you did?) Chick-lit. The only reason being I may be a little less cynical if I read something fun! 😛

Favourite biography? True Colours – Adam Gilchrist.

Have you ever read a self-help book? Only as part of my psychology training: ‘A Guide to Rational Living’ by Albert Ellis and ‘The Happiness Trap’ by Russ Harris. They are psychology books for the layperson and a good way for me to use strategies I teach clients as well as teach them in a simple manner. I highly recommend both!

Most inspirational book you’ve read this year (fiction or non-fiction)?
The Messenger by Markus Zusak. I loved the message it conveyed.

Favourite reading snack? Rarely eat while reading but if I do, it tends to be biscuits. Savoury ones.

Name a case in which hype ruined your reading experience:
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. It didn’t end up being as great as my friend, bloggers or even the few people at the store said. Probably because my expectations were through the roof.

How often do you agree with critics about a book?
Not very often. The professional ones I mean. Among friends and bloggers, I notice that if I have similar tastes, I do end up agreeing with their views.

How do you feel about giving bad/negative reviews? Not too fussed to be honest.

If you could read in a foreign language, which language would you chose?
Italian maybe…don’t ask me why because I have no clue myself

Most intimidating book you’ve ever read? The Fountainhead. Read it when I was in college. Didn’t particularly like it then. People are telling me it would be good to read it at my current stage in life. I’m still contemplating that.

Most intimidating book you’re too nervous to begin?

Favourite Poet? Ogden Nash.

Favourite fictional character? Ron Weasley (from Harry Potter series) and Anna (from My Sister’s Keeper)

Favourite fictional villain? Lord Voldermort.

Books I’m most likely to bring on vacation?
Anything on my bookshelf

The longest I’ve gone without reading:
Two years when I was doing my B.A. In my first and second year, I had chosen English Lit as one of my subjects and ironically, it put me off reading for pleasure. Thankfully, I got my groove back in third year when I was only doing psych subjects! 🙂

Name a book that you could/would not finish:
Gone with the wind. I remember reading the first chapter and attempting to do so thrice and didn’t get past it. The other one at the moment seems to be Salman Rushdie’s ‘Midnight’s Children’ and ‘Satanic Verses’. Let’s see if I get into it next year…they are on the bookshelf.

What distracts you easily when you’re reading? Blogging

Favourite film adaptation of a novel?
‘A Time to Kill’ by John Grisham.

Most disappointing film adaptation? Harry Potter. Yes, I refused to watch after the third one. Ruining Prisoner of Azkaban was the last straw.

The most money I’ve ever spent in the bookstore at one time?
Last year when I went to India…can’t remember the exact amount but bought about 10-12 books in one go.

How often do you skim a book before reading it? Rarely…mostly I just read the back cover

What would cause you to stop reading a book half-way through?
If it’s getting too hard to follow. Or it’s too boring.

Do you like to keep your books organized?
Yep. They are shelved according to height. And books by the same author are shelved together. Jodi Picoult has a whole shelf dedicated to her. And yes, maybe I am a bit OCD-ish.

Do you prefer to keep books or give them away once you’ve read them?
Keep, keep, keep. I still have my Enid Blyton books (although back in India) from when I was 6 years old. The only books I might give away are the ones I didn’t like at all.

Are there any books you’ve been avoiding? Not really.

Name a book that made you angry: Dollar Bahu and Gently Falls the Bakula

A book you didn’t expect to like but did? The odd-chick lit. Can’t really remember their names but some random ones from the library do surprise me…

A book that you expected to like but didn’t? Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy, A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth

Favourite guilt-free, pleasure reading? Jodi Picoult, Enid Blyton, Harry Potter…

Books I love or “the ones I can read again and again and again and…..”

  • Any Enid Blyton book: Malory Towers, St. Clare’s, Five Find outers, Faraway tree, Wishing chair adventures…
  • Harry Potter series…
  • My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult
  • A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
  • Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult

Too many more….

Books I love to hate:
The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy.

Books that left me underwhelmed:

  • Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. Too long-drawn for me. Some parts were not necessary.
  • A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth. Disappointing and anti-climactic.

I’m going to do the same as Prats did and say that if you love reading and are currently reading this post, you are tagged!

Until next time,


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  • pinashpinash
    16 November 2010 at 10:52 am

    I love Odgen Nash too.. 🙂

  • Makk
    16 November 2010 at 10:54 am


    I liked it.

  • Sidthegnomenator
    16 November 2010 at 11:30 am

    What you feel about the God of Small Things, I feel about just about every booked winner! It’s a scam, I tell you.

    I’m going to use this … ok?

  • Swaram
    16 November 2010 at 12:12 pm

    Jodi Picoult does deserve a shelf dedicated to her no 🙂 Nice 🙂
    Only to those who I know will handle it with care and respect. – Well said 🙂

  • moviesandsongs365
    16 November 2010 at 3:06 pm

    I might use this tag as well at some point.

    Also gave up on Rushdie’s ‘Midnight’s Children’, the print is so tiny, and it seemed like a mountain to climb. Probably is great, if you have the patience.

    I see you really like Harry Potter and Jasper Jones. Ever read the coming-of-age novel “A Separate peace” by John Knowles ?, I’ve got to page 50 and really like it so far. It’s only 200 pages. The book been compared to one of my favourites “The catcher in the rye”, which is why I’m giving it a go ( :

  • Titaxy
    16 November 2010 at 4:32 pm

    aahhh, a nice tag..different from the ones that usually go around 😀

    enjoyed reading about your reading / book habits, PB. 🙂

  • Smitha
    16 November 2010 at 5:34 pm

    This tag is so much fun to read, PB! And I can say same-pinch to a lot of things 🙂

    ‘The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy. It won a booker? Are you kidding me??!! It was nonsensical…’ – I so agree! I just did not like it!

  • comfortablynam
    16 November 2010 at 6:15 pm

    Most intimidating book you’ve ever read? The Fountainhead. Same goes for the exact same reasons.

    Most intimidating book you’re too nervous to begin? Atlas Shrugged : because of its size and Fountainhead 😐

  • Reema
    16 November 2010 at 7:17 pm

    a true harry potter fan. u didnt like LOTR? I havent read it yet. U gave up watching HP movies?? Awwww…I m eagerly waiting to book tickets for HP 7 on 19th Nov.

  • Prats
    17 November 2010 at 3:44 am

    Nicely done tag, Even I didn’t liked God Of Small Things but I Loved Shantaram (Though I agree some parts could have been edited out) and Suitable Boy.

    I somehow don’t mind watching Harry Potter movies; I agree the books are way too good but if I try and see how could the director have placed the events in 120 minute or so movie I find the loss of quality justified 🙂

  • Susan Deborah
    17 November 2010 at 4:17 pm

    I read this with pleasure but will refrain from doing the tag. Loved to know about your “booked” experience!

    Hope you have been well and that your mother is doing well and is happy.

    Much love,

  • Avada Kedavra
    18 November 2010 at 5:53 am

    Malory Towers series – my fav.. you liked nineteen mins? I couldnt get past 2nd chap.. dint like Jodi Picoult’s writing style.. I never liked Booker Prize books too.. even White Tiger was disappointing to me.. let me take up the tag.. it’s very interesting 🙂

  • Psych Babbler™
    20 November 2010 at 12:15 am

    @ pinashpinash: His poems are really funny, eh? I still remember the poem about the dentist we had to study at school…lovely! 🙂

    @ Makk: Glad you did 🙂

    @ Sidthegnomenator: I must say I haven’t read every booker winner. Only read that and The white Tiger. Didn’t mind the latter too much but didn’t think it was all that awesome. Especially when ‘A Fine Balance’ hasn’t won the Booker. And go ahead and take this on…would love to read yours!

  • Psych Babbler™
    20 November 2010 at 12:23 am

    @ Swaram: Yes she definitely does…I’ve loved almost all her book…there are probably only a couple I haven’t enjoyed

    @ moviesandsongs365: Looking forward to reading your responses! Apparently Midnight’s Children is great…Titaxy has reviewed it on Bond with Books and she managed to push through it. I may get back to it. Some day. And the book you have recommended it now going on my ever growing to-read list. Thanks for that! 🙂

    @ Titaxy: Yeah I quite enjoyed doing this one. I reckon you should take it on too…would love to read your responses! 🙂

  • Psych Babbler™
    20 November 2010 at 12:23 am

    @ Smitha: Do take on the tag Smitha! Would love to read your take even though we may have similar views on lots of things 🙂 And it’s such a shame about The God of Small things because I thought the issues were quite interesting (child abuse, possible mental health stuff) but the manner in which it was written and addressed was just horrible.

    @ comfortablynam: Well, I gave up on any Ayn Rand book after Fountainhead…didn’t even think of reading them 😛

    @ Reema: I haven’t actually read LOTR *blush* I have the book and haven’t watched the movies because I wanted to read the book first…haven’t done either so far! And yes, I gave up on HP movies. The first two were okay but not great but then the third was appalling and that was it for me. Decided to not watch it.

  • Psych Babbler™
    20 November 2010 at 12:29 am

    @ Prats: I had high expectations for Shantaram after recommendations from a couple of Australian friends but was disappointed. A Suitable Boy for me was anti-climactic and disappointing again. Read it with high hopes only to come crashing down. In my review I said why I was disappointed with this one. I have rarely found that books made into movies are any good…HP being in the same category. In fact, I refrained from watching My Sister’s Keeper which is one of my favourite books and I’m glad I did because I found they changed the ending in the movie to be ‘Hollywoodish’.

    @ Susan: Glad you enjoyed this! Mum is recovering thanks…still praying every day. 🙂

    @ Avada Kedavra: don’t like Jodi Picoult? I love her writing style…I got hooked into her from My Sister’s Keeper and since then have all her books. Hence a whole shelf dedicated to her. White Tiger was okay for me but not great. Looking forward to reading your tag!! 🙂

  • D
    29 November 2010 at 7:02 pm

    Every blog I’m dropping by seems to have something on books. TBut this tag is beckoning me.

  • Avada Kedavra
    13 December 2010 at 8:11 am

    Malory Towers series – my fav.. you liked nineteen mins? I couldnt get past 2nd chap.. dint like Jodi Picoult’s writing style.. I never liked Booker Prize books too.. even White Tiger was disappointing to me.. let me take up the tag.. it’s very interesting 🙂

  • pinashpinash
    13 December 2010 at 8:11 am

    I love Odgen Nash too.. 🙂

  • Swaram
    13 December 2010 at 8:11 am

    Jodi Picoult does deserve a shelf dedicated to her no 🙂 Nice 🙂
    Only to those who I know will handle it with care and respect. – Well said 🙂