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Friday, October 9, 2015

A Q&A for Book Lovers

What kinds of books do we like to read? What makes us love literature? What kinds of books speak to us?

This survey is one I copied from Barbara at "Stray Thoughts," who got them from Sherry at "Semicolon Blog." Thank you, ladies!

These are my answers:

Q. What propelled your love affair with books—any particular title or a moment? 
A. I started to read at age three. Our family is a reading family, and I always loved books. At first, they were very simple—about horses, and the Little House on the Prairie series—but then I went through periods of gothic novels, silly romances, and that kind of thing. I’ve always loved the classics and have read Homer, Chaucer, Shakespeare, and many others. I think I’ve always loved a great phrase, a meaningful thought expressed in the most precise way. I love haiku poetry. Today, I enjoy adventure, legal novels, murder mysteries, and archaeological themes. I read non-fiction for encouragement in my personal walk with God and for ministry, especially counseling. Over the years, I’ve met a few books I didn’t love, but my love affair with books is life-long.

Q. Which fictional character would you like to be friends with and why? 
A. Jane Marple, one of Agatha Christie’s characters. She’s an elderly lady, a detective of the highest order. She uses her knowledge of human character in her own little village to solve the most complicated murder mysteries. She sounds like the kind of person with whom I’d like to sit in the parlor and sip a cup of tea. I’d ask her a million questions about how she understands people so clearly.

Q. Do you write your name on your books or use bookplates? 
A. I print my name in the front and then on a specific page. Even if someone tears out the front page, my name is in it—and I know where!

Q. What was your favorite book read this year? 
A. It's a tie between two non-fiction books. Character Makes a Difference by Mike Huckabee is one I picked up just because I thought it might be interesting. It is excellent! Another non-fiction I loved is The Devil in Pew Number Seven by Rebecca Nichols Alonzo. It's a personal testimony about persecution, murder, and forgiveness. Awesome! In fiction, Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering tops my list this year. It is well-written and delightful, set in England. (Character Makes a Difference is reviewed here, The Devil in Pew Number Seven here, and Rules of Murder here.)

Q. If you could read in another language, which language would you choose?
A. I read easily in Spanish, so that would be my first choice. If I could just choose a language out of a hat, it would be either Chinese or German—Chinese because I’d love to know more about their literature and thinking, German because many brilliant writers wrote in German.

Q. Name a book that made you both laugh and cry. 
A. I absolutely love books like that! One of the reasons I read is for entertainment, and if a book can move the heartstrings in both directions, it’s perfect. Rain Dance by Joy Dekok did that for me. It’s about abortion and several other very serious subjects, but it also has some wonderfully light moments. (See my review, here.) 

Q. Share with us your favorite poem
A. I love good poetry! I'll share two about hope. The first is Crossing the Bar by Alfred Lord Tennyson:

          Sunset and evening star, 
          And one clear call for me! 
          And may there be no moaning of the bar, 
          When I put out to sea,  

          But such a tide as moving seems asleep, 
          Too full for sound and foam, 
          When that which drew from out the boundless deep 
          Turns again home.

          Twilight and evening bell, 
          And after that the dark! 
          And may there be no sadness of farewell, 
          When I embark;  

          For though from out our bourne of Time and Place 
          The flood may bear me far, 
          I hope to see my Pilot face to face 
          When I have crossed the bar.
And now, Emily Dickinson’s simple poem, Hope. Here’s the first stanza: 
           “Hope” is the thing with feathers
           That perches in the soul
           And sings the tune without the words
           And never stops—at all.

Probably the most brilliantly written poem of all time is Edgar Allen Poe’s dark poem, The Raven. It employs every imaginable poetic device.

If you'd like to copy the questions and answer them yourself, please link back to "In the Way," "Stray Thoughts," and "Semicolon Blog." Thank you! You'll find the links are at the top of this post.


  1. I enjoyed reading these! I think I put Devil in Pew Number Seven on my TBR list after seeing your review - if not I will add it now!

    1. Thank you, Barbara! You will love it. It's one of those books you don't easily forget. God bless, and thank you for the inspiration for doing these questions.


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