This or That

In which I answer questions about my bookish preferences. 

I was tagged by Bailey, of the lovely blog Of Books and Bailey. If you love books and you’re not already following her blog, then what are you standing around here for? Go do it!

But then, once you’ve done that, come back here, if you please. Because I’m about to answer rather a lot of questions, and it will be uncomfortable for all of us if I’m standing here talking to myself.

Hardback, trade paperback or mass market paperback?

I’m going to say hardback. They’re just so lovely and in my opinion, they smell better. I have to say though that I really like trade paperbacks.

The only good thing about my awful-little-ugly-creation-I-do-not-discuss is that it was a trade paperback and looks absolutely lovely in my opinion. If only looks made the book. (Heh. Rhyme.)

Bookmark or dog-ear?

I’ve never been in the habit of dog-earing books, but I have nothing against it. I have lots of lovely bookmarks, but I usually end up using an index card, just because it’s handy.

Amazon or brick-and-mortar?

I had to stop and think if I’ve ever ordered a book off Amazon. I’ve looked at books on Amazon…could it really be possible I’ve never ordered one? I might have to start doing it. It’s surely the safer route. Because going into a bookstore to buy a specific book and then leave has never, ever worked out for me. I end up browsing for hours and almost always come home with a couple of unexpected purchases.

Alphabetize by author, or alphabetize by title, or random?

Oh dear. None of the above? My organizational system makes sense to me, but only to me.

I know where everything is, and that’s the important thing.

Keep, throw away, or sell?

THROW AWAY? WHO THROWS BOOKS AWAY???? I mean…I suppose if it’s irredeemably damaged. Usually keep, but if not, sell, trade, or donate.

But this is funny, because I just drafted a post an hour or so ago about getting rid of books. I’ll explain more in depth there.

Keep dust jacket or toss it?

Let me show you something.


As you can see, with some exceptions, almost none of these books are wearing their jackets. I like the way it looks. So did I throw them away? Actually, I did not. Meet the jacket bundle.

(I’ve never heard of anyone throwing jackets away? If you do, say so in the comments. I’m quite curious because I didn’t know that was a thing.)

Read with dust jacket or remove it?

I take the jacket off when I’m reading because they distract me (and, as you saw in the previous answer, they’re usually already off anyway).

Short story or novel?

I must say novel. But I love the punch a short story can pack.

Harry Potter or Lemony Snicket?

Lemony Snicket.

Stop reading when tired or at chapter breaks?

Stop reading? These words are not words I have ever encountered together.

In seriousness, I usually have to just abruptly close the book—sometimes in the middle of a line. If I allow myself to read to the end of the chapter, all that’s going to do is end up in my reading five more chapters. I have to be firm with myself.

“It was a dark and stormy night” or “Once upon a time”?

I suppose I’ll go with “dark and stormy.” I was never much of a one for fairy tales.

Buy or borrow?

I don’t borrow from people, but I borrow liberally from the library. They hate me there, because I’m not so good at returning books. My current fine is $12.74. I’m sorry. It isn’t something I’m proud of. When I finish a book and I loved it, I’ll buy it.

Buying choice: book reviews, recommendations, or browse?

I guess mostly reviews and recommendations. The few times I just browsed and grabbed something that looked interesting, it didn’t turn out so well. I must not be great at judging a book by its cover.

Tidy ending or cliffhanger?

I like sort of unsettled endings. I don’t love tidy things. Life doesn’t end that way.

Morning reading, afternoon reading, or nighttime reading?


But I probably do the most reading at night.

Stand-alone or series?


I have this weird thing with series where I’ll like the first book, then lose interest before I can finish the later ones. Conversely, the most recent series I read was Michelle Gagnon’s PERSEFoNE series. I really liked the first book, rushed out to get the second and third (thankfully from the library) and my infatuation quickly turned to hatred. But I couldn’t stop reading because I was already invested in the series. 

(Pretty sure if I was a normal person, I wouldn’t mind series books, but as it stands, I haven’t had great experiences with them.)

Favorite series?

The Anne of Green Gables books.

Favorite children’s book?

A Mouse Family Album by Pamela Sampson.

Favorite YA book?

The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak

Favorite book of which nobody else has heard?

Looked at my bookshelves and the only thing I could come up with was First Lady of the Renaissance by Edith Patterson Meyer. It’s nonfiction—a biography about Isabella d’Este. I looked it up on Amazon, and it had only 1 measly customer review, so I think this one is a safe bet!

(There’s a whole story about me and this book that could probably be a post).

Favorite books read last year?

I read a ton of nonfiction. Psychology and neurology for fun and history for research.

By the by, if you’re writing a book that takes place in America between 1860 and 1876 (rather narrow, I know) do read The Expansion of Everyday Life by Daniel E. Sutherland. The absolute best resource I’ve been able to find as I’ve been working on this novel.

Favorite books of all time?

Not fair. Can’t do it.

What are you reading right now?

Oliver Twist and All The Light We Cannot See.

What are you reading next?

It will just depend on what I’m in the mood for when I finish these ones.

Favorite book to recommend to an 11-year-old?

Well it would depend on the 11 year old, wouldn’t it?

Favorite book to re-read?

Okay, I tried to think of something else, but in all honesty I am going to have to say Les Miserables. I’m telling you, it just never gets old! There is just so much stuff packed into it that you can’t help but get something different out of it every time.

*waves goodbye to all the followers who have had enough of me and are leaving* I’m sorry guys. I’ll miss you. I love you. Just not enough to shut my mouth about Les Mis

Do you ever smell books?

*has nose in spine of book*

*inhales with pleasure, eyes closed*

*look up suddenly*

I’m sorry, did you say something?

Do you ever read primary source documents like letters or diaries?

Yes! I write historical fiction…kind of unavoidable.


I’d love to hear in the comments what your answers are! Let’s discuss! 

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8 thoughts on “This or That

      1. I was devastated. I remember getting emotional about it: “WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT?!” Okay, I wasn’t really that dramatic…but there was some hand wringing and a lot of disapproving and sad looks. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Heyy! that is awesome!! Ummm.. most of the answers were similar, like smelling books, keeping the dust jacket(though not in good condition) The anne of Green Gables?? Of course, I read that in the school library…
    PS how can you not like harry potter??

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you! I still have a bunch of posts in drafts about other characters, themes, etc. but I keep getting distracted with other post ideas. But because of your encouragement, I might just have to start working on this series again. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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