I wasn’t really thinking about this tag, but I happened to have some time on my hands and I am in a MOOD. “I want to be productive” is a rather strange mood to be in on Thanksgiving weekend, which is when I am right now, but I’m rolling with it.

Tag created by About to Read. Typed questions stolen from Lori per usual.

1. You have 20,000 books on your TBR. How in the world do you decide what to read next?

I don’t. I scream and spontaneously combust. It’s messy.

2. You’re halfway through a book and you’re just not loving it. Do you quit, or are you committed?

I try very, very hard not to DNF, if only because I tend to go for the glory of the kill. If I’m suffering I want it to mean something, dammit. This is a habit I’ve retained over the years, and was most inconvenient to me when I was struggling through A Game of Thrones.

I also have a bad habit of reading loathsome books specifically in order to complain about them. If I know I’m going to destroy something I want to actually know what I’m talking about, right? Which is why I read the entire Twilight series from start to finish, which in retrospect was not my smartest idea. Fortunately I had better sense by the time I got to the Fifty Shades series, whose first installment I read solely for the purpose of comparing it to Twilight, after which I DNF’d that MF.

3. The end of the year is coming, and you’re so close but so far away on your goodreads reading challenge. Do you try to catch up and how?

I make up the difference with mangas. Don’t look at me like that. That’s how I finished my reading challenges from 2017 through 2019.

4. The covers of a series you love do. not. match. How do you cope?

Well, if the Poppy War series debacle is anything to go by, not well. For context, I bought The Poppy War and The Dragon Republic in paperback because there was nothing else, knowing that The Burning God would be released in hardcover well in advance of any paperback copies. Then I bought The Burning God – in hardcover, exactly as anticipated – and also hardcover copies of The Poppy War and The Dragon Republic because they happened to be crammed on the same shelf as The Burning God and because I am impossible. The paperbacks got shipped off to Lori, who thankfully does not object to receiving my orphans, because if there’s one rule I absolutely live by it is that you DO. NOT. THROW BOOKS AWAY.

That was a very long way of saying that if the error is on my end, I scream and then correct it. If the error is on the publisher’s end – i.e., if they change the cover style halfway through the series without so much as a how-d’you-do – then I can’t say I’ve run into this particular problem before, but at this stage in my life, OCD, and graphic design career, I most likely would not buy any of said series. This is absolutely a hill I will die on. Fight me.

5. Everyone and their mother loves a book you really don’t like. Who do you bond with over shared feelings?

Probably Lori. Aside from a slight disconnect on whether the Inheritance Cycle is actually good, we seem to share similar tastes in books, as evinced by our all-consuming love for Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine and our disappointment in The Priory of the Orange Tree.

If Lori happens to like this book and I still don’t, I might run off and cry to a couple of high school friends who can be counted on not to have read said book, and who are therefore likely to be sympathetic.

6. You’re reading a book and you are about to start crying in public. How do you deal?

I’ve been rather book-weepy lately, so, in the event that we are ever allowed to travel again, I’d probably circumvent this possibility by not reading potential heartbreakers out in public.

7. The sequel to a book you loved just came out, but you’ve forgotten a lot from the prior novel. Will you reread the book? Skip the sequel? Try to find a synopsis on goodreads? Cry in frustration?!?!?!?

REREAD THE BOOK BITCHES. I’d probably reread it whether I’d forgotten it or not, just to be ready, you know. (Of course, if the first book is over 500 pages, I might cheat and look up a synopsis, and then decide if I want to reread or not.)

On that note, I’m planning to read A God in Ruins (Kate Atkinson) next year and will most definitely be rereading Life After Life first because, although I’ve pretty much memorized it, I never pass up an opportunity to reread Life After Life. The other thing with that is because I read a library edition of Life After Life and bought the book later, I’ve never actually read the copy that’s on my shelf and I need to correct that, and also I really need to write a review of this book because it’s seriously amazing and I am so sorry I have never inflicted my opinions of it on the world.

8. You do not want anyone – ANYONE – borrowing your books. How do you politely tell people nope when they ask?

Well first I’d very politely say “I’m not a fucking library” and then if that didn’t take I’d start lopping off fingers. Isn’t that what everybody does?

Actually I don’t mind lending books to people I trust, and my friends will likely tell you that I can’t wait to give my books away. Words are meant to be shared. I have several books out on loan at the moment (again, to people I trust not to destroy my books), and at this point am more or less a walking book dispensary. I’m not worried about the safety of my books. I do not buy rare editions. I need to actually be able to read my books, breathe all over them, stuff them into bags, stack them on top of each other in precarious piles on my nightstand and various other flat surfaces, use them as device-charging platforms, and carry them around with me without worrying about them coming apart in my hands. I get fussy about the covers, of course, but functionality is key.

So if you’ve been eyeing my copy of Life After Life, great. You can pick it up tomorrow*. I am as a rule staunchly anti-social, but one of the greatest joys of reading is forcing other people to read what you’ve read specifically so you can talk their ears off after they’ve finished.

* Page-Benders, Cover-Rippers, and Eating-Or-Drinking-While-I-Readers will be burned at the stake.

9. You’ve picked up and put down five books in the last month. How do you get over your reading slump?

Oof I feel this. I’m coming off an intermittent reading slump at the moment, and it’s slow going. I don’t really know why because it’s not like the books I’m reading are bad or boring, but somehow I haven’t been particularly motivated this month.

The only thing I can really do here is pick up a book and power through. Gideon the Ninth languished on my nightstand for a week for no valid reason, but it only took me two sessions to get from page 143 to the end. Of course, it helps if I put my damn phone and/or 3DS down.

10. There are so many new books coming out that you’re dying to read! How many do you actually buy?


jk my bank account would murder me. I buy the ones I can see myself wanting to own long-term. The rest I try to find at the library. If all hope is lost and my only option is to buy, I spread out my purchases over multiple shopping sessions. Yeah, that’s so much better.

11. After you’ve bought the new books you can’t wait to get to, how long do they sit on your shelf before you get to them?

Do you want to fight me?