As part of the 2013 Book Blogger Love-A-Thon, I’m doing an interview swap with the lovely Liz from Along for the Read. Read on to find out about her blog, her reading preferences and her life outside of blogging.
1. For the new readers hopping by from the Book Blogger Love-A-Thon, how would you sum up your blog in a sentence or two?
Along for the Read is a (mostly) YA book blog with a heavy focus on contemporary YA, and a healthy dose of Harry Potter shout outs.
2. If you had to switch lives with one character, who would you pick? Is it the qualities you share or the things that make you different that attract you most?
This is a tough one! I could go in so many different directions. I think I’m going to have to reach into the wizarding world, because how could I pass up a shot at magic? I think I would go with Ginny Weasley. Which is not in any way because I’d want to marry Harry (I don’t feel for him in that way), I’ve just always identified with her. I remember when I first met Ginny, I was rooting for her from that first scene on the platform. Even though she barely played a role in the first book, I knew they were meant to be from the start. Maybe because I’m the youngest child.
3. Are there certain things that mean you just can’t resist a book? Are you most driven by great reviews, a good price or a gorgeous cover?
These are definitely all factors that can draw me into a book. An eye-catching cover is the first chance for a book to draw me in. I definitely judge my books by the covers, and I think that they can tell you a lot about a book. The people making these covers design them a specific way for a reason, so if it looks a certain way I can gauge whether it is something I will like. Since I mostly read contemporary YA, I like the soft, flowery covers. Of course the synopsis has to keep me interested after the cover draws me in.
Reviews are also a huge draw, especially as a blogger and, more importantly, blog reader. If someone with similar taste is raving about a book, even if I hadn’t paid much attention to it before, I am going to want to read it.
I also have a hard time turning down a good bargain. I love hitting up library sales and the extra cheap bins at used bookstores to find random deals. If I can get a YA book for less than a dollar, it doesn’t have to have much else going for it.
4. Hardback, paperback or e-reader?
The e-reader has its advantages, but I am definitely a fan of real paper books, I need to feel a book in my hands and turn the pages. The issue of hardcover vs paperback is a little more complicated for me, and ideally I would say both. I like to read paperback, and own hardcover. I have a hard time with damaging books, I feel incredibly guilty when anything goes wrong with them. This is the only area of my life where I am completely OCD. So in a perfect world I would have a hardcover for the shelf, and a ratty paperback to read and love.
5. When you’re not blogging, reading or training to be a teacher, what do you like to do with your free time?
Lots of television watching and movies. I wish I had a more interesting answer, but really I’m happiest when I am relaxing with a friend watching a good movie or some television. I am pretty hardcore about my TV shows. That said I do like to get outside, and get moving. I get a little stir crazy if I stay in one place for too long, so I walk everywhere. If I were to go on a vacation I’d rather something action packed over lying on a beach.
6. When it comes to adaptations, would you rather read the book or see the film first?
Definitely read the book. I need to see my own version of the characters without being influenced by the movie translation. There are some exceptions to this, if its a book I wouldn’t normally read, seeing a movie first could encourage me to pick it up, but as a rule it has to be the book first.
7. What was the last book you recommended to someone else?
Other than through the blog, I think it would be The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, which I recommended to a classmate recently. This is one that I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed it. I can’t wait for the sequel coming out soon!
8. You can tell a lot from a person’s shopping impulses: aside from a good book, what was the last thing you bought and loved?
Some goats cheese that I just ate? Haha I am pretty broke at the moment so it has been a while since I’ve made any real purchases. When I spend money I am most likely to be swayed by DVDs. If I’m going to spend a lot of money on a wardrobe related item I want it to be something that is going to last me a long time, which is why I love my Roots bags.
9. I see you’re a Buffy fan too (a sign of good taste) but are you a fan of Spike or Angel? A much more pressing question than Team Edward/Jacob!
Yes!!!!! As I mentioned, I get very into my shows, and I have been watching Buffy since the age of eight, when it was first on TV, which is when I fell madly in love with Angel. I absolutely love Spike as a character, but when it comes to love, Buffy and Angel forever. I’ve never really thought about it, but I wonder if I would feel the same way if I had started watching at an older age. Would his bad boy ways have won me over? It’s a serious possibility. I’d take Spike and Angel over Edward and Jacob any day of the year.
10. What’s one thing we wouldn’t have known about you from your blog?
Hmm.. I feel like you can get a lot of the important stuff on the blog, so I’ll go with something random. I am obsessed with Jennifer Lawrence at the moment. I guess the fact that I write a YA blog suggests a high probability of that, but really I want to be her best friend. When I get on youtube it’s all Jennifer Lawrence and Jimmy Fallon.