What was the last book you bought?
My last books bought were Ghosts of Vesuvius, The Great Deluge and Disaster Archaeology.
Name a book you have read MORE than once
I re-read many, many books, given my voracious reading speed! Here are some of the more frequently re-read: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Dune, The Clowns of God, Ender’s Game, Lucifer’s Hammer, anything by Lois McMaster Bujold, CJ Cherryh, Neil Gaiman, Robin McKinley, Robert Heinlein, Greg Bear, Connie Willis, Elizabeth Moon or Dick Francis.
Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it?
There are a few. The Clowns of God and Anne Lamott’s books have given me a fresh perspective on faith, Memory is an incredible tale of resilience and Heinlein’s books have influenced my political beliefs.
How do you choose a book? (E.g. by cover design and summary, recommendations or reviews?)
Primarily, I choose books by authors I enjoy or recommendation, secondarily by the jacket summary, and finally by cover design and reading random pages. Good cover art won’t sell a book to me, because I realize how little it sometimes has to do with content, but bad cover art will veto a choice for me because I’d be embarrassed to read it in public.
Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction?
Fiction – reading is my mental vacation. When I read non-fiction it’s very focused, either based upon a recommendation or a specific professional or personal line of research.
What’s more important in a novel, beautiful writing or a gripping plot?
Both – if either is lacking, the book falls flat. I’m having a tough time finishing Perdido Street Station because the writing is amazing but the plot and pacing take a backseat to style.
Most loved/memorable character (character/book)
Cordelia Vorkosigan. Jani Kilian. Heris Serrano. Aragorn. Eowyn. Paul Dekker. Nicholas Seafort.
Which book or books can be found on your nightstand at the moment?
Ghosts of Vesuvius. Expanded Universe. Perdido Street Station.
What was the last book you’ve read, and when was it?
The last book I finished, before NaNoWriMo started, was Neil Gaiman’s Anansi Boys.
Have you ever given up on a book half way in?
Occasionally. But I’m more likely to keep reading, hoping it will improve at some point throughout the book – and then, at the end, flip it into the “trade” stack in disgust.
Thanks to Ilya for the meme!