Thursday, December 17, 2009

Where Do You Hang Out?

I can't believe it's been two years since I joined Shelfari.
I first read about it in Oprah magazine. It was included in a list of sites that bookworms should like. I thought it was the best website in history and two years have not changed my mind. To me, it is hands down the best social networking site on the web- finding people with similar book tastes is like a miracle, after a lifetime of having people label you as "weird" for liking books. I found Shelfari around the same time I found my favorite used book store. Suddenly I had the means of really acting on my passion for books.
So, Shelfari is my favorite reading related social networking site. What is yours?

Where Do You Hang Out?

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P.S- On Shelfari, I am known as SpeaksofRivers. Look me up.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

TBR Thursday: How Does Your TBR Grow?

Question: How do you find new books to read?

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
David Sedaris
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorHealth Care Crisis

What draws me to a new book is either story, subject or familiarity- I'm guessing I am not all that unusual in this.

For fiction, I rely on blogs and Shelfari. There isn't just one blog that makes me run out and look for a book- that happens when six or seven of the blogs that I regularly read keep mentioning the book . It's the same idea with all my Shelfari friends. I figure that people who like books know what they're talking about.

Almost any book with a history of controversy ends up in my TBR pile. Banning a book is a good way to get me to read it. Cuz I'm nosy.

I also like lists of important books- I can be a literary snob when I want to, so lists of important philosophocal works or a book review that uses the word bildungsroman appeals to me.

Nonfiction is about subject and voice. There's a misconception that a truthful telling of a story requires a dry, nasal tone (think Ben Stein in the "Clear Eyes" commercial).

But ideas themselves are exciting. When I first read or hear about a nonfiction book I get excited- because you can do so much with just a thought.

O Magazine is a good place to look for new books. I'm not always crazy about the Oprah book selection- either I fall madly in love with it (The Poisonwood Bible) or I hate it (Back Roads).

In the magazine, however, are two columns- Books That Made A Difference To and Reading Room. The first one usually features a prominent person- often a celebrity, but just as often some influential, yet fascinating person you've never heard of. The second is a series of brief reviews of new books.

I also love the authors featured on The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. The most interesting part about these shows is seeing who can convey their ideas while engaging in the running gag (especially important on The Report.) You don't have to try to catch these shows, either- check out their websites at and search for specific guests.
The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Andrew Ward
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political HumorHealth Care Crisis

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Honest Scrap Award

Michele Emrath of Southern City Mysteries has awarded the Dangerous Pages Review with the Honest Scrap award. Along with great honor comes great resposibility. Which means I have to state ten things you may not know about me.

1. I've been a vegetarian for 8 years.

2. I have a parakeet named Cosmo. He likes to eat chicken and he's always humping his perch (that's how I can tell he's a boy).

3. I used to live in Italy and Japan (military brat) and would go back to visit either place in a heartbeat, if only to eat the food.

4. I turned 21 in November. Now I can buy my booze instead of secretly brewing it in the bathtub...

5. Yo aprendo hablar Espanol.

6. I like skepticism. This is a late development as I tend to go through year long phases of being obsessed with interesting topics. So, I spend a little bit each day on The Skeptic's Dictionary and Skeptical Inquirer.

7. I recently got a new job. It's my first real job, actually. And it is at Waldenbooks. (Talk about good fortune)

8. I have a variety of places where I look for book recommendations, but for nonfiction, believe it or not, Jon Stewart (on The Daily Show) has some of the best books if you are into politics and history--and it doesn't matter if it's Al Gore or Ron Paul.

9. With 3 younger siblings and about 30 first cousins, I am a committed family person. I have been committed because of my family. (Jut kidding. You know I love yall.)

10. I wrote this post in my pajamas. The pants have green and blue stripes, the shirt is white with an ice cream stain on it. Least I think it's ice cream...

Postscript: Nominees

So, now, I have to pass this award on. I have chosen a handful of the blogs I keep returning to- not just to see what they've been reading, but also to check up on bloggers who have become as familiar as next-door neighbors...if people still talked to their next-door neighbors.

Miss Nobody of Miss Nobody's Scribbles

Ali of Worducopia

Book Pusher of The Genteel Arsenal

Lilly of Reading Extravaganza

Rebecca of Lost in Books

Friday, December 4, 2009

Friday Night Book Porn (Home Decorating Edition)

Book porn: (n) Photographs and descriptions that exploit the nerd's natural lust for the physical beauty of reading material. Such material is deemed highly dangerous to one's sanity . People under the influence have been known to max out their library cards, spend their food money on paperbacks and exhaust their friends and loved ones with "wish lists" .

If someone you love suffers from book porn addiction, understand that there is no cure.

Just give them what they want.

Well, deck my halls. It's been two weeks since I posted. Forgive me. All sorts of things made me both busy and lazy (blazy) and I decided to give it a tiny rest, rather than try to crank out a series of half-a$ed posts. But rest assured- now the DP Review has my undivided attention...until something else pops up (this is why it's good to avoid reality as much as possible. It's bad for blogging.)

Anyway, tonight's book porn will be all about books as art, books as environment. This is usually called "decorating with books" and tends to annoy the more-dedicated book porn enthusiasts. Sure, I like looking at a nice set of spines as much as the next girl (hey, I'm not dead). But any use of books as decorating elements has to fulfill the need for functionality and beauty. It can't all just be physical, you know?