Monday, March 23, 2009

Maven is a good word. Maaaven.

Moon Rat had this Literary Maven meme on Facebook. I loved reading hers, so I'm posting mine here and tagging anyone who wants to answer. Leave a comment and tell me if you post your answers on your blog!

"You have received this note because someone thinks you are a literary maven. Copy the questions into your own note, answer the questions, and tag any friends who would appreciate the quiz, including the person who sent you this. Don't bother trying to italicize your book titles." (oops, I didn't read this until I'd already done it)

1) What author do you own the most books by?
Technically Ann M. Martin. I think I had 87 Babysitter’s Club books by the time I stopped reading them. I think they're in a box in my attic. Or my parents' attic.

2) What book do you own the most copies of?
Pride and Prejudice. You can never have too many copies of that book.

3) Did it bother you that both those questions ended with prepositions?
Yeah, it did. I actually thought about rewording the questions so they wouldn’t end with prepositions. Then I read this question, so uh…I guess I’ll leave them.

4) What fictional character are you secretly in love with?
Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird. Also Edward Rochester *sigh* from Jane Eyre. When I was young, I thought Almanzo Wilder (Laura Ingalls Wilder’s husband from the Little House books) was the most romantic name I’d ever heard.

5) What book have you read the most times in your life (excluding picture books read to children; i.e., Goodnight Moon does not count)?
Probably Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I reread the HP books (usually starting with the third) before each new HP book would come out. Jane Eyre is probably up there, though.

6) What was your favorite book when you were ten years old?
Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh. Hands-down the best children’s book ever.

7) What is the worst book you've read in the past year?
New Moon was the worst one I actually finished. The Arsonist’s Guide to Writers' Homes in New England was the worst I didn’t finish – and I really wanted to love that book but I just couldn’t get through it.

8) What is the best book you've read in the past year?
The Little Friend by Donna Tartt. Not the easiest or most un-putdownable, but I'm nearly done with it now, and it's by far the best-written.

9) If you could force everyone you tagged to read one book, what would it be?
Yeesh, one book. I want to say the Bible because it’s the most important book to me, but I’d never, ever want to force anyone to read it. So..can't answer this one.

10) Who deserves to win the next Nobel Prize for Literature?
I don’t read enough Nobel Prize-winning literature to make an informed opinion. Has Judy Blume won? Because I think Judy Blume should win. Think of all the people who’ve been affected by her genius books. I’m pretty sure that number is exponentially higher than the people who’ve been affected by the books of the 2008 winner Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clezio.

11) What book would you most like to see made into a movie?
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. I’m also certain there can never be enough Jane Eyre adaptations, so let’s go ahead and do another one of those.

12) What book would you least like to see made into a movie?
The Bible. And any more Twilight books.

13) Describe your weirdest dream involving a writer, book, or literary character.
Can’t remember.

14) What is the most lowbrow book you've read as an adult?
I’ve read a few cheesy romance novels and a few mysteries that were ridiculous. Also Twilight.

15) What is the most difficult book you've ever read?
The most difficult and rewarding was Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner. I love that book now, but it definitely helped that I had to study it in college. Twice. The most difficult because it was boring was Crime and Punishment. The most difficult because it was stupid was New Moon.

16) What is the most obscure Shakespeare play you've seen?
Does Kiss Me Kate count?

17) Do you prefer the French or the Russians?
I’m sorry, my love is already completely taken up by the English and Americans. I haven’t read much by the French, and the Russians use way too many nicknames for characters which sound nothing like the characters’ real names. So it looks like there are about 40 people in a novel instead of 20. Dostoyevsky, I’m looking at you, man.

18) Roth or Updike?
Neither. Jeesh, way to get literary snobby over here. I think maybe I read something by Updike in college because they made us…? Can’t remember, don’t really care.

19) David Sedaris or Dave Eggers?
Never read either. Although I have a friend who’s in love with Sedaris.

20) Shakespeare, Milton, or Chaucer?
Chaucer b/c he’s the most fun. I took an entire Chaucer class in college and loved it. Shakespeare can come hang out, too. Not Milton. He’s boring and misogynistic.

21) Austen or Eliot?
Austen, duh. *Mwah* I love her. But Eliot was great, too; Mill on the Floss is one of those books I’ll come back to read again and again. Actually, let’s take Austen AND Eliot, and leave Roth, Updike et. al. to go be boring in a corner together.

22) What is the biggest or most embarrassing gap in your reading?
In college I never read for pleasure. Too many novels on my plate already with a full class load as an English major.

23) What is your favorite novel?
Jane Eyre, with Absalom, Absalom! as a close second.

24) Play?

25) Poem?
Full disclosure: I hate poetry.

26) Essay?
I read a bunch of Emerson in college, and he was kind of fabulous but I couldn’t name any specifically.

27) Short Story?
Anything by Flannery O’Connor. I’ve also always liked The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gillman. Very creepy and awesome.

28) Work of nonfiction?
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. I also recently read and liked The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher by Kate Summerscale. Mostly anything that's true crime.

29) Who is your favorite writer?
This is an impossible question.

30) Who is the most overrated writer alive today?
This is hard b/c there are a lot of overrated dead writers. I loathed Curtis Sittenfeld’s Prep, even though everyone seems to love her, and I don’t think her new book looks like something I want to read, either, even though it’s on the NYT Bestseller List.

31) What is your desert island book?
The Bible? Also maybe the complete works of Shakespeare and Austen.

32) And... what are you reading right now?
Flapper by Joshua Zeitz. And The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart. And The Little Friend by Donna Tartt. And Zelda: A Biography by Nancy Milford.


Litgirl01 said...

Ooooh! Thanks Anna Claire! I think I'll steal this from you. ;-) I'll post it this evening. I am in love with Mr. Darcy and Hamlet! :-)

PurpleClover said...

I posted mine to my blog! I had a hard time changing up my answers so it didn't sound like I was copying you! lol.

But overall it was fun! Took me back some years though! ;)

shannon said...

I love this! (#6 -- yes, me too!)

beth said...

Love this! I think I will use it for my FB page...

Crimogenic said...

Nice little questionaire you have here. I've probably read Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban as many tmies as you. :)

Justus M. Bowman said...

"I want to say the Bible because it’s the most important book to me, but I’d never, ever want to force anyone to read it."

For some reason people like the freedom to choose. Odd, eh?