Meet Donna, a book lover from Alaska who warms herself up with reading and knitting.
1. When have you read your first book? Was it a book love at very first sight?
This is a tough question for me to answer and an emotional subject. I was raised in a very strict religious home. I was not allowed to have regular books. I had the bible, a dictionary, a set of encyclopedias and a set of bible stories. I was not allowed to go to the library either, ever, for my entire childhood. A few times when a friend gave me a book they thought I would like my parents took the books away before I could read them. I went to this same school until I was 18 when I refused to go anymore. I left home and got my diploma through correspondence. At that point, the first REAL book I read was a book a found in a waiting room. It was V by A.C. Crispin
and I still have it. I wasn't allowed to watch much TV either and we certainly never had cable so this was totally new to me. I devoured it. When I met my husband he had the same book as well as many others and it was instant love. My husband and I both love to read.
2. What made you start writing about books/book blogging?
I met a friend through penpalling and this one friend, Brenna, (http://brennam.booklikes.com/
) had a booklikes blog. I fell in love with it right away and started my booklikes blog in May of this year.
3. Did blogging have an impact on your reading life?
I´ve had blogs before but never posted regularly or had any real followers. I never thought about blogging about books though. Once I started and joined some of the games I started having a lot more fun reading. I really enjoy sharing the books I´ve read with other people that also love books. I especially love reading other blogs and learning about new books. My new years goal for this year was to cut down on books because I don´t have enough bookshelves to hold them all. After joining Booklikes and chatting with other bloggers I realized that was a dumb goal. Why should I cut down on something I love so much? My husband is going to build some shelves for me so I don´t have to worry about it.
4. You like to craft. What’s you favorite technique? Do you read when knitting?
I mostly crochet. My sister taught me when I was 6 and it is pretty much second nature to me. I also knit, although it is more of a challenge to me, but I really enjoy learning new techniques online and making blankets for charities like Project Linus or for the local homeless shelter and women´s shelter. I love to listen to audiobooks while crocheting or knitting. Audiobooks bring the characters to life while allowing me to look at what I´m doing. I have also found a new craft recently called diamond painting and I also love to work on that while listening to audiobooks.
5. What are you reading right now?
Inkheart by Cornelia Funke (recommended by one of my sons)
6. What’s you favorite genre? Why is it special?
I love mysteries and crime novels. I especially like books that involve a mystery that happened in the part and they go back to talk to people from that time to try to figure out what happened. There is so much evil in the world and I like reading books about clever people who can figure out whodunit, catch them and lock them up. I don´t like books where the evil is not stopped.
7. You live on Alaska. Can you recommend Alaskan writers?
Oh yes, Sue Henry
! I met her once here in Fairbanks, Alaska and chatted with her for a while. She is a great person that loves what she does.
8. A paper book or an e-book?
Paper. I do have a kindle but there is just something special about the smell and feel of a real book. I especially like older books. Kindles just smell like plastic and never come with odd little mementos tucked inside like pressed 4 leaf clovers, old movie tickets or other interesting things that were used as bookmarks.
9. Three titles to warm oneself up in winter?
Well, I think exciting books are the ones that warm me up. So here are 3 I liked.
10. How did reading change your life?
Around 2009 I started having a lot of pain and fatigue and eventually had to quit my job as a CNA/Endoscopy tech. After a long time and a lot of tests I was told I have Fibromyalgia and Psoriatic Arthritis. I live with constant pain, especially in my joints. At first I went into a long, deep depression because I missed my job and having a sense of purpose. I felt like I´d lost my identity. As I was trying to find something I could do to help get my mind off of the pain I was in I started to read. At first I was having a really hard time focusing but one of the meds they put me on helped with that. Once that happened I would get lost in a book and for that time I felt better. Reading is my escape and my book friends I´ve made are my life savers.
11. Which books are you most excited recommending to your followers this fall/winter season?
I am currently really psyched about Ann Cleeves
´ Shetland Island series. Some people have seen the TV series but I haven´t met anyone who has read the books. Her books make me want to go there myself. I´ve also been liking a series by Paul Doiron (sound like Dworin). I recently read Massacre Pond
and really liked it. This series in set in the wilderness of Maine and follows a game warden as he solves crimes. Reading the descriptive scenes I am reminded of the Alaskan wilderness and I can just imagine being right there with him.
12. What’s your favorite book related quote?
Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.
-- Groucho Marx
13. If you could meet one literary character, who would it be?
Oh gosh, that is a really hard question. I´ll say Lydia from Debbie Macomber´s Shop on Blossom Street
. I think we could be good friends. We both have been through a lot with health problems and she is also a knitter.
14. Shelfie time! Please share your home library photos :)
This is one of my shelves crammed into my entry way. I have another shorter shelf in my living room and I also have stacked wooden crates on the shelf in the top of our coat closet and filled those with hard backs. We also have shelves in the garage full of books and books in each bedroom.