Book Blogger Q&A: The Sleepless Reader

Alexandra from The Sleepless Reader is the 48th blogger to contribute to the Book Blogger Q&A series.

Check out her great responses:

The Sleepless ReaderHow long have you been a blogger?

I started in April 2010 – it’s been quite a ride! –  but I’ve been lurking in the book blogging community for a while before that.

Approximately, how many books do you read every year?

Ever since I’ve been counting I’ve never been able to reach three digits. I’m always at around 80-something. Disclaimer: I do enjoy mammoths.

What were your favourite books as a child?

I’m Portuguese so not a lot of people will know about my childhood favourites (Alice Vieira, Ana Maria Magalhães and Isabel Alçada). Still, I did enjoy the Malory Towers by Enid Blyton, and several comics like Asterix & Obelix, Lucky Luke and the Brazilian Turma da Monica. I’ve only started exploring the classic Anglo-Saxon children books when I was about 20.

What are you reading at the moment?

I’m starting the recently-launched A Dance with Dragons by George RR Martin. I’ve been a fan since they were only known via word-of-mouth among fantasy-geeks. It feels weird to see them out of the closet.

I’m also listening to Enduring Love by Ian McEwan on my iPod.

If you had to pick one, what’s the best book you’ve read in the last twelve months?

(1)   I’d say Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray. It’s huge but oh so worth it. Becky Sharp is the perfect anti-heroine and Thackeray does sarcasm like very few. It’s followed very closely by Master and Commander by Patrick O’Brian.

Audiobook-wise I’d say The Coma by Alex Garland read by Matthew MacFayden. Very short and very spooky. Followed closely by The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch read by Michael Page.

Who are your three favourite authors?

I’m going to cheat here. By genres:

  • Fiction: Ian McEwan, Garcia Marquez, Chuck Palahniuk
  • Classics: Jane Austen, E.M. Forster and Elizabeth Gaskell.
  • Historical fiction: Dorothy Dunnett,  Sharon Kay Penman and Patrick O’Brian
  • Fantasy: George R.R. Martin, Guy Gavriel Kay and J.K. Rowling
  • Children’s: L. M. Montgomery, Alice Vieira and Roald Dahl
  • Graphic novels: Bill Willingham, Alan Moore and François Schuiten
  • Sci-fi: Heinlein, Margaret Atwood and Douglas Adams

Which book has had the greatest impact on your life?

Difficult one! I’d say Pride & Prejudice because it made me seek out other fans, which led me to online literary communities, which led me to many unknown books and authors and ultimately to blogging.

Which books are you most eagerly anticipating?

Now that I have the new George RR Martin, I’m not “eagerly” waiting for anything. I am more “looking forward to” the new installment of Alan Westerfeld’s Leviathan series and Scott Lynch’s Gentleman Bastards series. I’m also waiting for the paperback version of Amitav Ghosh’s Rivers of Smoke.

Which book character is most like you?

Hummm… maybe Hermione Granger. I’m not as smart but just as much of a bookworm and obscure-fact-geek.

If you had to invite some book characters round for dinner, who would you choose and why?

  • Atticus Finch, because he’s just awesome.
  • Faramir, my biggest literary crush.
  • Jack Aubrey & Stephen Maturin, hopefully I’d persuade them to bring their instruments and entertain us a bit.
  • Nicholas de Fleury, a great addition to any party.
  • Scarlett O’Hara or Becky Sharp, I think a party can only handle one of them…
  • Morgan Le Fey, but (very important) from The Mists of Avalon. She’s always underrated/evil in other Arthurian novels.
  • Lord Peter Wimsey, although he’s probably make me nervous about the food I’d serve.
  • Tyron Lannister, see Atticus Finch.
  • Precious Ramotswe. I’d like her to stay after everyone’s gone for a bit of gossip. I’m sure she’d have great insights into the other guests.

What advice would you give to new bloggers?

The community is where the pleasure of book blogging lies: interact as much as you can!

Which other book blogs do you recommend?

Lots and lots, but five good ones: Steph and Tony Investigate, 2606 Books and Counting, A Striped Armchair, The Canary Review and Books are my Boyfriends.

Thanks to Alex for taking the time to answer our questions in so much detail. If you haven’t already done so, visit her great blog, and follow her on Twitter.

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