The Reading Habits
Are you a re-reader? Why, or why not? And if you are, what are some of the books you have read over and over?
I’m no longer a re-reader, simply because there are so many new books competing for my time, but growing up, I reread my favorite books so many times that they became a bit shabby from so much handling. Those favorites included Little Women and the Anne of Green Gables series.
When is your optimal time to read – do you prefer to read in one long block, or do you also read for five minutes here or there when you can?
When’s the best time to read? Any time! I’d love to be able to read in long blocks, but reality is that my reading time is limited. I read while I’m walking in the basement, which I must admit my husband considers a dangerous form of exercise – the reading part, that is. I also read while I’m eating breakfast and then any other time during the day when I can eke out a few minutes.
I’d love your thoughts on novellas. Are you thumbs up or down? Or does it depend?!
As someone who writes novellas in addition to full length books, you’d probably expect a firm thumbs-up from me. The truth is, it depends on the author. But that’s the case with full length books, too, isn’t it? I particularly enjoy novellas during the Christmas season when reading time is even scarcer than it is during the rest of the year.
Are you faithful to a genre, an author, or simply quality writing?
How about “all of the above”? Because it’s what I write, I read extensively in the romance genre, both historical and contemporary, although I also enjoy mysteries, suspense and the occasional thriller, not to mention general fiction. I also find myself drawn to specific authors who can be depended on to provide an enjoyable reading experience. Quality writing is essential. I can’t tell you the number of books I’ve put down after only a chapter or two simply because the writing wasn’t at the level I expected.
Which factors most influence your selection of a book?
The author first. I have a number of “go-to” authors, but I’m always willing to try someone new. That, of course, raises the question of how I decide to try a new author. The answer: cover art.
Your fiction pet peeve?
Books that don’t resolve the story but force you to read the next book in the series. When that happens, I feel as if the author has tricked me. Not only do I not buy the next book in the series, I rarely buy anything else from that author.
What book have you read this year that you could not put down, and why?
I was fascinated by the world Thomas Locke created in Trial Run and couldn’t wait to see how he was going to get his characters out of some of the predicaments he devised for them.
How do you mark your spot – folded page corner, bookmark, dollar bill, whatever is at hand?
Bookmark! My friends know that I would never, ever fold a page corner, and so they’ve given me what’s now a nice collection of bookmarks. The hardest thing is deciding which one to use. I’ve included a picture of part of the collection so you can see just how difficult that decision is.
Whose debut novel impressed you more than you anticipated?
Susan Anne Mason’s Irish Meadows was marvelous! I’d expected a typical historical romance, but it was much more than that. Now I’m eagerly awaiting the next in the series.
When reading, what makes or breaks a story for you?
Two things: the calibre of the writing and the characters. As I mentioned earlier, I have little patience for lackluster writing. And unless I care about the characters from the first chapter, I won’t keep reading.
What are some of your favourite CF reads from around 10 years ago, or further back?
Oh, my – there are so many. At the top of the list are Lynn Austin’s Refiner’s Fire series, Stephanie Grace Whitson’s Pine Ridge Portraits trilogy and Kathleen Morgan’s Brides of Culdee Creek series.
Snack/drink of choice while reading?
Yogurt and herb tea, but not together.
What book cover has really caught your eye?
There are so many wonderful covers, especially in the CBA, that it’s hard to pick only one, but if I had to choose one, it would be The Adventures of Geraldine Woolkins by Karin Kaufman. This is an indie-published allegory that, while it’s targeted at children, is a story everyone can enjoy. The cover caught my eye, and so while I don’t normally read children’s books, I had to buy this one. The story is as good as the cover.
Which author makes it easy to turn off your internal editor?
Irene Hannon. Her books, whether romantic suspense or women’s fiction, are so beautifully written that I can lose myself in them from the first line.
What book do you wish you had written? Why?
Since I’ve already admitted it’s one of my favorite books of all times, you won’t be surprised when I say I wish I’d written Little Women. The reason? Because it still touches readers, even though it was written almost 150 years ago.
You’ll notice that my TBR pile is shorter than you might expect. That’s because the majority of it – literally hundreds of books – is on my e-reader. That’s why I included the e-reader in the picture.
Be sure to discover Amanda’s latest novel…
If there’s one thing Gillian Hodge never wants to see again, it’s a man on a motorcycle. Her last encounter with one left her right hand crushed, ending her promising career as a concert pianist. But as she heads to Rainbow’s End Resort, a sudden thunderstorm causes a motorcycle to crash in front of her.
When TJ Benjamin’s wife died, he lost more than his best friend; he lost his faith. He’s spent the past year wandering the country on a motorcycle, trying not to think about his future. When he finds himself stranded with a busted bike and a reluctant rescuer, he has to wonder about God’s sense of humor.
Can this woman without a future and this man running from his past find romance in the present? Or are they too tied to the way life used to be?
Relz Reviewz Extras
Reviews of Summer of Promise, Tomorrow’s Garden, Scattered Petals & Paper Roses
Character spotlight on Priscilla & Zach
Character spotlight on Sarah & Clay
Interview with Amanda
Visit Amanda’s website
Buy at Amazon: On Lone Star Trail or Koorong