Monday, August 19, 2013

A Chat With Book Reviewer - Danielle from Mercurial Musings

Danielle writes the best reviews. I always love how thorough she is and how often she captures the heart of a story. It is my total pleasure to have her visit YAlicious today.

Welcome along, Danielle :)

1.     When did you first discover your love for reading?

I’ve loved to read for as long as I can remember. While I wasn’t allowed to watch much TV growing up, my parents let me read whatever I wanted to. Before entering middle school, I’d gone through most of Dickens’ works and was getting started on Stephen King. My mom quickly learned early that sending me to my room as a punishment didn’t really work because I would curl up with a book, perfectly content.

2.     What were your favourite types of books as a kid?

I’ve always been an omnivore when it comes to books. One minute I’m reading the classics, the next it’s whatever popular book I find on the shelf of an airport bookshop. I do remember loving Nancy Drew and Sherlock Holmes as a girl, that’s the puzzle-solver in me. Stephen King and H. P. Lovecraft were also favorites, especially to read by flashlight under the covers!

3.     How do you like to feel when you finish a book?

Satisfied. I hate an implausible happy ending. I hate endings that are more the author deciding he/she did not want to write any more than a carefully crafted cliffhanger. The ending needs to make sense in relation to the rest of the book. I love turning the last page and musing for a bit about how that book changed me or how the characters will continue to pull at my brain for a few days after.

4.     What do you like most about reviewing books for authors?

Being able to communicate with authors is a great perk. Before I started blogging, I didn’t really know how to contact the writers I admired. Now, with a quick tweet or email I can thank an author for letting we the readers into the world they created. Sometimes, an author will reply back, and that’s just a bonus. In a few cases, some of the authors whose books I’ve loved have become friends.

5.     What's the most recent book you've read that you thought would make an awesome movie?

I just finished reading Juvie by Steve Watkins, it played out in my head as a movie the entire time I was reading. It’s written very succinctly in chapters that move between past and present, giving readers bits of the story at a time. This style lends itself perfectly to the screen.

A traditionally published author you love:
Libba Bray. Her writing is brilliant—she paints with words so beautifully; I love being lost in her books. But the most amazing thing is how she moves effortlessly between genres. Historical fiction with a supernatural twist, yep, she’s done that. Snarky satire full of smart humor, she’s done that too. I’ve come to believe there’s nothing she can’t do. If you’ve not read any of her books, do so immediately—I’d start with The Diviners.

An indie author you love:
Of course, I love your books, Melissa :) But I also adore Megan Curd’s books. Her imagination is limitless and her drive to make her writing the best it can be is inspirational. She has a new book coming out this month, Steel Lily, everyone should check it out!

One of your favourite YA books:
So difficult to pick one and if you ask me again tomorrow, I’m sure I’ll change my mind. Shine by Lauren Myracle moved me in a way few books have, it’s edgy and real and creeps into your subconscious.

One of your favourite Adult books:
Again, choosing one is tough. I’m going to pick Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer. Krakauer is one of my favorite non-fiction writers. His style is journalistic with a narrative twist. The story of Chris McCandless is one of tragedy and unfortunate circumstance and reminds us all of the fragility of life.

A book you've read more than once and the reason why:

Alice in Wonderland. We moved a lot when I was growing up, pretty normal for a military family—we shipped off from country to country and I always felt a bit like Alice, falling down the rabbit hole and not really knowing where I’d land. Alice is a book I re-read every year, I have since I was maybe nine or ten. I also collect copies and would love to one day get my hands on a first-edition!

That is so cool, Danielle. Alice in Wonderland is a true classic. I love how many different genres you enjoy. Thanks again for sharing with us.

If you'd like to connect with Danielle online, you can find her here.