Today on Chuck A Book is one of favourite authors Zoë Marriott who you can find blogging over at The Zoë -Trope.
1) The best book you have ever read.
Argh! So cruel! Um... OK, I’m just going to go with my current favourite, which is The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold. See the word ‘master’ in her name? That’s because she is a master of language. Her writing expresses ideas in one sentence that I probably couldn’t convey in a whole book. Her characters break my heart. Her stories blow my mind. It’s the book I return to time and again and probably will for the rest of my life.
2) A book you loved from your childhood.
Lioness Rampant by Tamora Pierce. It’s the final book of a high fantasy quartet about a young woman who dresses as a boy in order to become a knight. The story brings together everything the heroine has learned in the previous three books in this explosive climax that leaves you a broken, weeping puddle. And this is the book that, when I read it again as an adult, made me realise I wanted to write YA.
3) A book that made you laugh.
Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. God, this is just a hilarious book. I mean, it’s deeply thoughtful, and exciting, and romantic and all that. But it’s sososo funny. I must have re-read this about... twenty times? And the jokes are *still* funny. In fact, the last time I read it I actually suddenly got a new joke that I’d never noticed before and laughed out loud on the bus, getting worried looks from fellow passengers.
4) A book you could not finish.
Spellbound by Rachel Hawkins. It’s the final book in the Hex Hall Trilogy. I liked the first one, really liked the second one, and was so excited to get the last one - but it just didn’t work for me. There’s a point about halfway through the book where the heroine is watching the boy who is supposed to be the love of her life get tortured – genuine, regulation, grade-A tortured – by her classmates under the supervision of a teacher, and she just *stands* there and feels bad about it without trying to help. I mean, she doesn’t have to be held back by minions. She’s not screaming at them to stop. She stands there quietly thinking ‘Oh, how terrible’. Yeah. Um. Hell to the no.
If I hadn’t been reading it on my eReader I would have thrown it across the room.
5) A book that made you swoon.
Archangel’s Blade by Nalini Singh. Oh my God, Dmitri. Just... whoa! *Swoon*
6) A book you can’t wait to read.
I’m pretty sure this is the same as everyone else’s, but definitely City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare. WHAT CAN POSSIBLY HAPPEN NEXT??? And you know what kills me about that? My editor is also Cassandra Clare’s UK editor, and my agent is Cassandra Clare’s UK agent, which means those guys *already know*. But will they tell me? Even give me a hint? Noooo. Apparently I’m supposed to talk too much or something. Pfft. Everyone knows I’m as quiet as a church mouse! Right? RIGHT?! Guys? Hey!
7) A series you have read and loved.
The Magic Bites series by Ilona Andrews. Love ‘em to itty bitty tiny pieces. They have this amazing urban fantasy/Dystopian landscape of southern America after this tsunami of magic has basically destroyed all the world’s technology, and it turns out that all our legends and fairytales and myths were always true – there was just never enough magic around for any of it to manifest. The heroine is this fabulous, wise-cracking, sword-wielding mercenary, and the supporting characters are stellar. Warning though: the first book is really grim. It almost put me off the whole series. I recommend people skip it and go straight to the second book.
8) A book that made you cry.
Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson. This book, dude. This book. Can you say suckerpunch to the face, followed by an elbow to the gut and a stab to the heart? Because you WILL be saying that, once you read it. Tissues at the ready!
9) Your guilty pleasure book.
Er... I don’t really have one? I mean, I don’t really believe that I need to feel guilty, whatever I’m reading. People don’t feel guilty for watching, like Eastenders, do they? Or football? There’s technically no cultural value about those things, but they entertain us, and that’s fine. Why should books be any different? If it entertains you, then it’s all good. If people try to belittle me for my choice of reading material (hey, mum and big sis – I’m looking at you!) I tend to tell them to shove it. Only I use more forceful words.
10) A book that took you out of your comfort zone.
I’m just starting Unrest by Michelle Harrison. I’m doing an event with her (and Karen Mahoney and L.A. Weatherly) on the 4th of August at Foyles, so her publisher sent me a copy. I’d never have picked it up otherwise – not because Michelle is not a brilliant writer! – but because HOLY &@#+! THIS STUFF IS TERRIFIYING. Even the cover is freaking terrifying. Seriously. I tried to read this in my sunny garden in the middle of the day. Two pages in and I was already jumping like a jack-in-the-box every time the cat brushed my leg. Brrrr!
Thank you Zoë for taking part in Chuck A Book. I am looking forward to exploring some of your choices that I haven't heard of before.