Getting to know the blogger behind the reviews!
Hey guys! It's been a little over a month since the last blogger interview, so I'm very excited to get this feature going again. With us today is Brooke from i blog 4 books!
Tell us a little bit about your blog.
Well ... I've actually been blogging for quite a while on several different blogs. THIS blog, however, is primarily about books (mostly Christian fiction). You'll see reviews, interviews, giveaways, and lots of other random things about books. From time-to-time I'll throw in some other things about family, traveling, what the Lord is teaching me, etc.
What got you started in blogging your book reviews?
My book blogging started as a result of our church going through "The Radical Experiment" in 2010. We were challenged to put a "cap" on our lifestyle. Basically, set a "bare bones budget," stick to it, and give everything else away to help meet urgent spiritual and physical needs around the world. My husband and I had just gotten married and didn't really think we had a lot of "extra" in our budget, but we saw three areas that we could save money: cable (no cable for us - even during football season!), eating out, and my book-buying habit. Shortly after I committed to not buy a single book for the entire year, I learned about "book blogging." It started out as a way to score free books (you asked for honesty!) but quickly became so much more! (Sorry for the mini-sermon!)
How long have you been blogging?
I started blogging on xanga (does anyone else even remember xanga?) in 2005 after I returned from spending several months as a missionary in Africa. It was such a great way for me to get all my thoughts out about everything the Lord was teaching me . . . and a great way to build community with people I knew in real life but didn't always know how to "go deeper" with. I've hopped around on several different blogs since then, but feel pretty settled here at i blog 4 books now. I've been blogging here since February 2010.
Congrats on almost two years of book blogging! How much time do you put into your blog?
That's a great question! Probably more time than I realize . . . and more time than I should! A lot of it is just brainstorming time, though, when I'm driving or not "busy" with other things.
What genre is your favorite and why?
Definitely mystery / suspense. I grew up reading Nancy Drew, the Bobbsey Twins, the Boxcar Children, and the Hardy Boys, so I got hooked early. There's just something about turning the pages as fast as you can read them to find out if everything is going to turn out "okay." I also love a great romance too, so I'll read just about anything if there's a romantic take on the story.
Mystery/suspense are my favorite too! What is/are your favorite book(s) of all time?
Picking favorites is so hard for me! I feel like I'm saying that I don't like everything else. As a child, The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter was my favorite. (I even slept with it at night!) Two of the most life-changing / thought-provoking books are Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers and Eyes of the Tailless Animals by Sun-ok Yi. Favorite of all time? Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. I have multiple copies of this one, and it's one of the few I enjoy re-reading.
Who are your 3 favorite authors?
Man, this is really difficult. A lot of times it's whoever I've just discovered. :) I will read ANYTHING written by Karen Kingsbury, Charles Martin, and Denise Hildreth Jones. (Can you tell I like a good emotional story?) I've discovered tons of awesome "new to me" authors through my blog though! (I just realized that none of these "favorites" are the mystery/suspense genre. Hmmm ... I wonder what that says.)
Do you enjoy doing memes? If so, which ones can be found on your blog?
I think memes are so fun! Most Tuesdays I participate in Teaser Tuesday. I'm also planning to join Thursday 3 and Friday Five this year.
If you had to pick one, what's the best book you've read in the past year?
I think the BEST one would have to be City of Tranquil Light by Bo Caldwell. I read it at the beginning of January 2011 . . . kind of hard to believe nothing has "topped it." A very close second would be The First Gardener by Denise Hildreth Jones. Both are beautiful, raw, emotional stories.
What are you reading at the moment? How do you like it so far?
Oh goodness. I'm flying through books right now. I just finished several really sweet Christmas stories. I'm about to dive into Kisses From Katie by Katie Davis. I know it will be good but will definitely be reading with tissues in hand. If you don't read her blog, you MUST check it out!
Have you read a book that you would like to rewrite the ending of?
As crazy as this is going to sound (since it's my favorite book of all time), I wish that Little Women could somehow end differently. Jo and Laurie are just supposed to be together! And Beth . . . sweet Beth . . . I'd find a way for modern medicine to travel back in time and save her. (Sorry if I just ruined it for anyone!)
Favorite book character?
I don't know that I have a specific character in mind, but I do love strong leading ladies.
A character you love to hate?
Can't stand whiny, wimpy characters. Or horribly mean ones. (For some reason Nellie Olsen from the TV show Little House on the Prairie is coming to mind right now.)
How many books do you read in a month - roughly?
Generally, I read 6-7 books per month. Lately, I've either had a lot of spare time or really been shirking my responsibilities in other areas because I've read over 10 books the last few months.
Which do you prefer, Ebook or Print?
Definitely print! I love the smell of paper, so I know I won't ever get rid of print books entirely. But my Nook sure is nice when I'm on the go!
What do you like to do when you aren't blogging?
I love spending time with my husband. We love to travel, so planning the next vacation or mission trip is always fun. And I love to watch movies in my spare (non-reading) time.
If there was something you’d want your readers to take away from reading your blog, what would it be?
Well, most importantly, I hope that readers can tell that I love the Lord and will leave feeling encouraged or a bit more hopeful than when they arrived. Second, I hope that everyone who stops by will be encouraged to try out a new book. :) I've enjoyed reading Christian fiction through the years and I hope that others will too!
* * *Thanks for being with us today, Brooke! It was so much fun interviewing you and getting to know you a little more :)