The Book Q&A

Thanks to Angela Savage for tagging me for The Book Q&A. You can read Angela’s answers here: Anyone can take part so consider yourself tagged.

What are you reading right now? The Bedlam detective by Stephen Gallagher.

Sir Owain’s sanity has been in question ever since a disastrous Amazonian adventure killed his family and colleagues. However, when two local children are found brutally slain, Lancaster claims that the same dark forces that devastated his expedition have followed him home…

I can’t believe I have never come across this author before, well maybe I can because up to now he’s mainly written horror novels and TV scripts, including Dr Who. This is a highly imaginative historical mystery with undertones of Conan Doyle’s The Lost World. The Characters are all wonderfully drawn especially the likable protagonist Sebastian Becket special investigator for the Master of Lunacy. I’m about 3/4 of the way through this book and unless the ending goes seriously wrong will probably give it a 5 star review.51h16cguYsL._AA160_

Do you have any idea what you’ll read when your done with that? Off to the snow on Saturday and have downloaded Stef Penny’s The Tenderness of Wolves for that added wintry feel. I also have the new Kathy Reich’s book Bones of the Lost, Peter Robinson’s Children of the Revolution and Tracy Chevalier’s The last Runaway, all waiting for the press of a button. I love my kindle.

What 5 books have you always wanted to read but haven’t got round to? Fanciable books pop up all the time.  I like my mysteries to be a bit off centre so I’m adding Mari Strachan’s debut The Earth Hums in B-Flat to my list after reading Margot Kinberg’s recommendation. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed books 1&3 in Angela Savage’s Jane Keeyney series and hope to read book 2 in the not too distant future.  The same goes for David Whish Wilson’s first novel The Summons. Many of the books I want to read are actually re-reads, classics I read as a teenager but would like to read again through adult eyes. The first of these that pops into my mind is Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina. Oh yes, and War and Peace.

What magazines do you have in your bathroom/lounge right now? I’m not much of a magazine reader but I do have a stack of Red Herrings (UK Crime Writer’s Association journal) next to the loo.

What’s the worst book you’ve ever read? Life’s is too short and there are too many good books out there to waste time reading what I don’t like. The last one I hurled across the room in disgust was JK Rowlings Cuckoos Calling. It was when I discovered the protagonist’s name was Cormoran Strike and his side-kick was Robin. I mean, really …

What book seemed really popular but you didn’t like? The Hobbit – didn’t finish.

What’s the one book you always recommend to just about everyone? Changes all the time. At the moment I’d say Bird Song by Sebastian Faulks.

What are your three favourite poems? Birches Robert Frost, The Road Less Traveled, Robert Frost, No Man is an Island John Donne and plenty more, especially Shakespeare’s sonnets.

Where do you usually get your books? I buy from a bookshop whenever the opportunity presents, but living in rural Australia it’s far easier to download from Amazon for my Kindle.

Where do you usually read your books? Waiting rooms, aeroplanes, bed, at my desk, on the cross-trainer. Anywhere and everywhere.

When you were little, did you have any particular reading habits? Many books were deemed ‘unsuitable’ at my Catholic boarding school and we used to hide our books under the floorboards in the dormitory. I once read a copy of The Exorcist disguised as a dictionary. Another time I found a very ‘rude’ book (anything that mentions breasts when you are 9 is deemed rude) called Calamity Jane torn up in a compost heap. I cello-taped it together and read it aloud to my giggling dormitory by torchlight after lights out.

What’s the last thing you stayed up half the night reading because it was so good you couldn’t put it down? I’m not a night person, but the last book I stayed in bed reading all morning – ignoring all work that needed to be done – was Amanda Curtin’s fabulous book Elemental.

Have you ever ‘faked’ reading a book? Maybe at Uni, can’t remember.

Have you ever bought a book just because you liked the cover? No

What book changed your life? Stephen King’s On Writing. I think the reason it changed my life is self explanatory.

What is your favourite passage from a book? Don’t have any passages in my head but I will never forget the evocative first line of Isabelle Allende’s masterpiece House of Spirits: ‘Barrabas came to us by sea, the child Clara wrote…’

Who are your top five favourite authors? Kate Atkinson, James Lee Burke, Frances Fyfield, Minette Walters, Elly Griffiths –  and these are just the crime authors!

What book has no one heard about but should read? Not sure – any of the books below?

What 3 books are you an “evangelist” for? (can I make it 4?) The Book Shop on Jacaranda Street by Marlish Glorie, The Eye of Re by Patricia L. O’Neill, Blood Opal by Carole Sutton.

What are your favourite books by a first-time author? To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson, House of Spirits by Isabelle Allende, Rotten Gods by Greg Barron

What is your favourite classic book? Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Five other notable mentions? Red Badge of Courage Stephen Crane, The Loved One Evelyn Waugh, Tales of Mystery and Imagination Edgar Allan Poe, The Mayor of Casterbridge Thomas Hardy and dozens more!


1. Post these rules

2. Post a photo of your favourite book cover

3. Answer the questions above

4. Tag a few people to answer them too

5. Go to their blog/twitter and tell them you’ve tagged them

6. Make sure you tell the person who tagged you that you’ve taken part!

TAGGED, YOU’RE IT! #MarlishGlorie #P.L.O’Neill, #CaroleSutton,#AmandaCurtin,#GregBarron, #David Whish-Wilson

No Obligation to participate but it is quite fun and certainly gets you thinking!

10 thoughts on “The Book Q&A

  1. Felicity – Thanks so much for the kind mention. I truly enjoyed reading your answers to these questions.
    I can highly recommend Angela’s second book: The Half Child is such a well-written book, and of course, Jayne Keeney is a great character. It’s funny you’d mention that Robert Frost poem too; I have a copy of that, framed, that I have to remind me that it’s OK to think ‘outside the box.’
    And thank you for mentioning Carole Sutton’s work, which I like very much. Isn’t she talented??

    • Yes, Carole is talented and not recognised as much as she should be. Wasn’t this a tough quiz, though? After a lifetime of reading it’s almost impossible to narrow the lists down to just a few – I know I’ve left so many worthies out!

  2. Loved reading your responses, Fe. Also love knowing you’re a Kate Atkinson fan. Did you watch the series the BBC made out of the first two Jackson Brodie novels? Not bad, I thought.

    • No, I was worried about being disappointed by it and didn’t watch the TV show. Maybe I’ll watch it next time around.Have you read Life After Life, Angela? I think I enjoyed that even more than the Jackson Brodie brooks. x

  3. The latest book Q&A… | looking up/looking down

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