Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Liebster Award!

How pleasantly surprising to open up my email a few days ago and see that I had been nominated for the Liebster Award by Cleopatra from Classical Carousel! I am so excited and grateful.

The Rules:
  1. Thank the blogger that nominated you and link back to their blog.
  2. Display the award somewhere on your blog.
  3. List 11 facts about yourself.
  4. Answer 11 questions chosen by the blogger who nominated you.
  5. Come up with 11 new questions to ask your nominees.
  6. Nominate 5-11 blogs that you think deserve the award and who have less than 1,000 followers. You may nominate blogs that have already received the award, but you cannot renominate the blog that nominated you.
  7. Go to their blog and inform them that they've been nominated. 

11 Facts about Me!

  1. I am 100% Ukrainian, but have never been to Ukraine (and neither have my parents).
  2. I am going to university this Fall, and am majoring in Chemistry and minoring in Creative Writing (because I just couldn't ignore that literary part of me!).
  3. I have a tree house in my backyard that my dad, my sister, and I built a few years back.
  4. I love paperwork and organizing documents and papers and shopping for school and office supplies.
  5. I am a Grammar Nazi, but I am an undercover one, because I don't want people to hate me. 
  6. I can recite Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll by memory.
  7. I will also gladly sing you the Major General song from Pirates of Penzance (I might need a quick brushing up - I haven't done it in a while), as well as a few of the other famous songs from that operetta.
  8. I wrote my first book when I was 8. It was self-illustrated, and involved a family of children who's names all started with the letter "S" visiting their Great-Great-Aunt. She was very spry for her age.
  9. I have a lot of nerdy math and science T-shirts. 
  10. I have a younger sister who is my best friend. She is awesome... though she still hasn't forgiven me for the time I basically spoiled a good many books for her when we were young, because I so desperately wanted to discuss them and she hadn't read them yet.
  11. My handwriting drastically changes depending on my mood. I have around five distinctly different handwritings.

Cleopatra's 11 Questions:

1. What book(s) are you currently reading and what do you think of it (them) so far? 

I'm actually sort of in-between books right now, having finished The Island of Doctor Moreau and not yet begun Madam Bovary. However, I am in the middle of The Mabinogion, and I do think it is an interesting book, though I am getting a little bit tired of it. This is most likely due to me taking an actual course dealing with Arthurian literature, so I've sort of analyzed it to death.

2. If you could only read books from one country, which country would you choose? 

Oooh that's a tough one! My first thought was England, because I ADORE British lit, but then I would miss out on all the great American literature, like Poe and Twain and Fitzgerald... And then what about France? And my darling Les Miserables
If pressed, though, I would probably pick England.

3. Can you name a book that you've read and expected to enjoy, but ended up hating it?

I rarely hate books, but one that I absolutely hated was Bel Ami by Guy de Maupassant. I love Maupassant's short story The Necklace, but Bel Ami just bugged me. I actually wrote about it on a Top Ten Tuesday once... you can read about it HERE.
Oh, and also, Moby Dick. That book was boring. I didn't HATE it, per se, and Ahab is one of the most famous characters when discussing motivation, but I just was so BORED by it. 

4. Can you name a book that you thought you'd hate and ended up liking? 

This one's a bit harder. I'm going to have to say - no. I never enter any book with expectations of it being bad. And if it is a book I've heard SO much bad stuff about from people I know have similar reading preferences to mine (ahem, Twilight, ahem, Fifty Shades of Grey, ahem), I just don't read it.

5. Where is your favorite reading place?

I will read ANYWHERE. If I get lost in a book, I will ignore cold toes or uncomfortable seat backs. In fact, this has been made fun of so much in my family that I wrote a post on how I would die. Don't worry, it's not morbid, and does have something to do with the topic at hand.
But if I picked a spot, I do like the couch in our front room. It's very sunny in the middle of the day. And if it's warm, we have a screened in porch with a comfy wicker couch we got last summer. 

6. Do you have any "bad" habits when reading, such as dog-earing, writing in books, talking to the books, etc.? (although I'm not sure if any of those are "bad" habits! :-) )

I do dog ear, particularly because I somehow just can't use a bookmark. I have a nice collection of bookmarks, but - here's another "bad" habit - I fidget with my fingers when I read: with the edge of the page, with a strand of my hair, or with the aforementioned bookmark. I don't want to destroy them, so I end up just not using one. Which is a pity, because I have so many nice ones.

7. If you had to live as a character from a book, who would you choose and why?

I'd like to say it would be someone exciting - like Eowyn from LOTR or a character in Narnia.
BUT, I think that I'm too much of a coward for that. :-) I KNOW I live in a place where I'm never faced with much danger, and I appreciate that heartily. I read books to be able to temporarily travel into another mind, another world, with more danger sometimes - while always staying safely in my nice, safe house. Soooo, I'm a bit too scared to actually choose a character - unless I can be assured of not dying. Then, I'd probably pick Thursday Next from the series by Jasper Fforde. She has an awesome life and gets to interact with Bookworld and characters from books. She also has an adorably sweet husband that's just as much of a literary nerd as she is.

8. Would you/have you challenged yourself to read in a genre or era that you wouldn't usually choose? Which one?

My slow transition to contemporary literature (especially YA) might be considered a sort of mental challenge. I used to NEVER read books that weren't expressely recommended to me by someone with similar reading tastes, or that weren't universally popular (like Harry Potter, the Hunger Games, Eragon, etc.). I am now more willing to pick up a random book at the library that looks decent. It's just that I hate wasting time on a bad book.

9. Can you think of a popular writer (or two) with whom you were unimpressed?

A lot of the popular YA books that I have read (again, Hunger Games, Eragon, Divergent) are good, but not great (Harry Potter excluded). So I would say I was unimpressed because my reaction to them was just "meh" - I definitely wasn't impressed.
Also, see  Q.3.

10. If you could live somewhere other than where you live now, where would that be?

Well, I do adore Chicago, and I think it is the best city in the US, so anywhere else in that country is out of the question. But I think I would like London. I've been there before, and it's cool.
Quebec is nice, too, but a bit too small for me. But it would work.

11. Are you an introvert or an extrovert?

An introvert. But an introvert that generally appears extroverted, because she isn't shy.
A word in defense of introverts worldwide: introvert does not mean shy. Introvert means that I don't mind going a day without seeing people. Or even a week, most likely. Socializing is not what drives me, like it drives extroverts. I can be social, but it requires a bit of preparation beforehand.

Questions for My Nominees:

  1. If you could meet any author - dead or alive - for dinner, who would it be, and why?
  2. What is your most prized possession?
  3. How many books do you read at once (on average)? If you read more than one - do you have a special way of managing it?
  4. What is your least favorite book and why?
  5. What book(s) are you reading right now? How do you like it (them) so far?
  6. What is your least favorite literary cliche?
  7. If your house was about to burn down in a fire, which five books would you grab immediately (assuming you had time to do so)?
  8. If you could take a vacation in any fictional world, where would you go?
  9. If you could have one fictional character as your best friend, who would it be?
  10. What book completely changed your life?
  11. Do you prefer writing with a pen or a pencil? Why?
YAY! Off to go nominate awesome people!


UPDATE: I will be linking up to the various blogs that I nominate as I nominate them. Go check them out! Remember, this list is incomplete as yet (I'll be notifying a few more nominees over the next few days or so), so feel free to check back to this post to see whom else I picked!

My Nominees So Far!
Kayla at The Thousand Lives
Elyssa at Unscripted 
Lauren at Books, Tea, and Me
Mitchii at Aeropapers
Ruth at A Great Book Study


  1. This is great! I like learned so much about you! (Aaaand that sounded super creepy, but I mean it in the most un-creepy way....nope. I still sound creepy. Bleh.) OKAY THEN. Your sister and your relationship sounds a bit like my sister and me. ;) Except she used to spoil all the books for me when we were little! She read faster. Now I'm the speed reading and always throwing books at her head because she's so sloooow. My how the tables turn. ;)

    1. No, don't worry, it didn't sound creepy. :-) And yay for awesome sibling relationships! Though I've always been the bigger reader, so... I mean, my sister is definitely a reader, but not obsessive about it like I am. She's obsessive about other things. :-)

      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Well, thank you, Sophia, for nominating me. I was pleasantly surprised. I will have fun answering your questions. Thanks, Ruth @ Great Book Study

    1. You're welcome! I'm looking forward to reading your answers :-)


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