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Top ten historical fiction books

Top Ten Tuesday

Today it is Top Ten Tuesday freebie and we can choose any topic we want, so I will go for my top ten historical fiction books.

I like historical fiction that has at least some sort of realistic connection to the time it is talking about, maybe a real event that the story builds upon, or real people whose story is told in a fictional way. So, here we go…

Top Ten Historical Fiction Books


What are your Top Ten Historical Fiction books?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top Ten Books to get into the Halloween Spirit

Top Ten Tuesday

OK, my horror, thriller and spooky reads are kept to a minimum these days, but I will probably come up with a few books that I have read during the years.

Halloween

 

My Top Ten Books to get into the Halloween Spirit

What are your Top Ten Halloween Reads?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

Bat graphics by Studio Flergs from Scrapbookgraphics.com 

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Top Ten authors of historical detective novels

Top Ten Tuesday

I have already blogged about this topic and if you have been to my blog before chances are you will have heard of one or two people on this list. 

 

Top Ten authors of historical detective novels
  • David Wishart
    My absolute favourite. I just love his detective, patrician Marcus Corvinus, who wisecracks his way through Tiberius’ Rome.
  • John Maddox Roberts
    I like his SPQR series not so much for the sleuthing of his hero Decius Caecilius Metellus, but for the setting in the last days of the republic. Tons of interesting characters come to life here.
  • Lindsey Davis
    I didn’t care too much for The Silver Pigs which is set in Britain, but the later books are really good. Set in Rome in the time of Vespasian.
  • Margaret Doody
    With Aristotle this series has an interesting detective. Set in Greece in the 4th century B.C.
  • Bernard Knight
    His Crowner John books are very entertaining. Set in England in the 12th century.
  • Ellis Peters
    Well, everybody loves Brother Cadfael, if only because of Derek Jacobi. Set in England in the 12th century.
  • Susanna Gregory
    Her detective Matthew Bartholomew is a Cambridge fellow in the 14th century.
  • Robert van Gulik
    The interesting detective is Judge Dee, a Chinese magistrate in the 7th century. Based on a real person.
  • Stephanie Barron
    I love those books with Jane Austen as detective for the lovely settings.
  • Steven Saylor
    I am no big fan of Steven Saylor’s Sub Rosa series. It is set around the same time as the SPQR books, but his detective Gordianus is not nearly as interesting as the Metellan one. However, I did like the fact that Mr. Saylor has one book in the series about the little incident on the Appian way where Milo killed Clodius (Murder on the Appian Way).

What are your Top Ten Authors in a favourite genre of yours?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Favourite places to read

Top Ten Tuesday

Today is a Top Ten Tuesday rewind which means we can choose any past topic we missed. I was going to do Top Ten book to movie adaptations but then realized that I had already done this topic as a Thursday Thirteen post in May this year (and totally forgotten about it).  I looked around and saw that Birgit did her favourite places to read and so I decided to join her.

Favourite places to read
  • Bed
    Nothing better than my warm, comfy, cosy bed.
  • Bathtub
    Nothing better than my warm, comfy, cosy bathtub (except my bed)
  • Coffee shop
    If only people around me would stop talking
  • The waiting room at any doctor’s office
    Why don’t they have a clue about time management?
  • The hairdresser’s
    If only she would stop talking
  • The library café
    If only our library was a nicer place

What are your Favourite Places to Read?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top five series I haven’t finished

Top Ten Tuesday

There must be lots of them. I am not a reader who keeps on reading a series even though I have lost interest in the genre or topic or even though the series becomes just plain boring.

So I went through my Goodreads account to see what series are still unfinished or discontinued (by me).  Here we go:

 

 

Top five series I have not finished
  • The Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger.
    Stopped after book one. I have book two and three – and maybe even four, not sure – lying around here, but when I started on number 2 it bored me to death.
  • The Agatha Raisin series by M. C. Beaton
    When Agatha started to seriously lie to get her neighbour to marry her I stopped immediately. I hate that sort of stuff.
  • The Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J. R Ward
    What a promising series! I loved the guys and could have continued forever. But then she treated V so unfairly. I managed the following book six but that was it. The series had deteriorated considerably.
  • Sookie Stackhouse by Charlaine Harris
    Book seven was my last one. I am still interested but just not as much as before. It might have to do with the image of that greasy Eric from the TV series that I now have in my head. Until I saw him I adored Eric just as much as the next girl.
  • The Narnia books by C. S. Lewis
    What a disappointment! My own Narnia project given up after one book, I feel bad about that, but I found the first book rather disappointing.

Tons of mystery series: Crowner John, Matthew Bartholomew, Daisy Dalyrymple…after a while I lose interest and stop reading them for one reason or another. However, there are a few series that I follow no matter what, but that is a topic for another list…:).

What are your Top Ten series you have given up on? Or do you continue come hell or high water?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top five books on my fall TBR list

Top Ten Tuesday

This is a hard one as I am never planning ahead much, and if I do the plan usually gets thrown over quickly. However, as I have signed up for the Harry Potter readalong, at least a few books will be HP books. I am pretty sure I won’t read all of them before the end of the year, I am no Harry Potter aficionado.

So, my preliminary Top Ten Five Books for fall look like this:

 

 

Top five books on my fall TBR list
  • Harry Potter and the philosopher’s stone by J. K. Rowling
  • Harry Potter and the chamber of secrets by J. K. Rowling
  • Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling
  • The Grass Crown by Colleen McCullough. About time to get going with this one.
  • Shades of Earl Grey by Laura Childs. This is my second book of that cozy series that I own. I must know whether it gets any better. With the first one I was not 100% convinced.

I can’t plan more than five books, and that is already stretching it. Any more would be pure speculation.

What are your Top Ten/Five/Three Books on your fall tbr list?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top Ten Bookish Confessions

Top Ten Tuesday

This won’t come as a surprise for some of my visitors, because my deplorable reading habits have already been discussed at length at a Friday Coffee Chat a long time ago.

But I might be able to come up with a few more, so here we go….

 

 

 

Top Ten Six Bookish Confessions

1. I dog ear

2. I break spines

3. I miss the due date at the library by 1 day, then have to pay for the full week

4. I sometimes, only sometimes, read the last page of a book when I am somewhere in the middle. However, that doesn’t tell me much as the last page invariably mentions people I haven’t heard of yet.

5. I almost never buy books new. Instead I swap or buy them used. The last book I bought new was “Girl Reading” and that was only because it wasn’t available as a used book anywhere.

6. The second I finish a Harry Potter book and close it I have forgotten the plot. I am not kidding. I do remember some events, like the Quidditch championship or that contest where that Quidditch talent with the Russian name rescues Hermione (a fact I could never understand, by the way, he only knew her a short time) from whatever threat (see, I have even forgotten that), but basically I have no clue about HP. All I know is that it is good boy vs. Mr. Evil.

Jean Rostand said:

Prerequisite for re-readability in books: that they be forgettable.

With that in mind, for me the Harry Potter books are as re-readable as they can get.

What are your Top Ten Bookish Confessions? I am curious!

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top Ten Blogs/Sites I Read That Aren’t about Books

Top Ten Tuesday

My Google reader is full of feeds for various topics, but I only skim most of them. Some sites, however, I spend a fair amount of time at. Here they are:

 

 

 

 

Top Ten Blogs/Sites I Read That AREN’T about Books
  1. The Daily Digi
    A site with digital scrapbooking news that gives a good overview of what is going on in the digiscrapping community.
  2. Better After
    I just love makeovers of any kind. Before and after photos fascinate me. The amount of time people put into making over furniture that other people consider trash is amazing.
  3. iPhone Ticker
    German iPhone info site. All the latest news on apps and iPhone related topics.
  4. The Geek Art Gallery and the Great Geek Manual
    Everything geeky under the sun, photos, art, movies, links etc…
  5. Just something I made
    Crafty site with plenty of ideas – and freebies.
  6. Funky Junk Interiors
    Look how you can create a beautiful and original home with repurposing, up-cycling and re-using things.
  7. Mamas kram
    Craft site with beautiful home decor, sewing, decorating, you name it. In German.
  8. House of Svea
    See above, just in English and Swedish.
  9. SPIEGEL online
    Online service of the German news magazine. Everything I want to know about what is going on in the world. My hangout during morning coffee.
  10. Martha Stewart
    My go-to site for recipes, household tips, craft ideas, kids’ activities and what not.

What are your Top Ten blogs or sites you read that AREN’T about books?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top Ten Books You’d Like To See Made Into A Movie

Top Ten Tuesday

Totally forgot to post this yesterday…it was a public holiday and my schedule was messed up…

I don’t know whether I can come up with even one book that I would like to see made into a movie. Movies from books – with the exception of a few – suck. Big time.

I don’t want someone to re-create a book on film and destroy all the images in my head. When I was still a child I remember my disappointment and anger after watching “The Neverending Story” (which is only half the book to boot). Until then I had this great image of Fuchur in my head which I have never been able to conjure again after I saw that horrible WORM in the movie (don’t tell me you think this creature is cuddly or cute or anything!). The Neverending Story has never been the same again thanks to Wolfgang Petersen. I could go on and on forever, actually the topic today should rather be “Ten books you never wanted to see made into a movie”…

That being said sometimes I think that they do a really good job and do the book justice, so I probably COULD come up with a list of books where the movie adaptation worked for me after all, but this is not today’s topic.

 

Top Ten Books You’d Like To See Made Into A Movie

  • None

What are your Top Ten Books you’d like to see made into a movie?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top ten all time favourite characters in books

Top Ten Tuesday

After I compiled my list of favourite characters in books it turned out that most of them are recurring characters from series and not stand-alone books. It seems they don’t make such an impression on me to really stick with me (except for a few, as you will see).

Three are from detective novels, maybe this indicates that, even though I am not a stickler for law and order, at least I am a stickler for justice. My favourite detective heroes all have proven to be able to bend the rules and let something slide once in a while.

Anyway, this is quite an eclectic list and not complete at all. They all just popped into my head.

Top ten all time favourite characters in books
  1. Wesley from The Princess Bride by William Goldman. Even though my last reading of the book was not that enthusiastic I still like Wesley who is the ultimate lover, hero, pirate, swordsman and whatever else you want him to be. At least I imagine him to be that way. 
  2. Marianne Engel from The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson. I wouldn’t have thought I would choose a religious nut for this list, but I very much like her.
  3. Adrian Mole from the Adrian Mole diaries by Sue Townsend. The funniest diaries ever. Adrian’s comments about his life are priceless. A complete loser, but you sympathize with him and his plight.
  4. Sam I am from Green eggs and ham by Dr. Seuss. Shows if you are only insistent and obstinate enough you will get there.
  5. Saskia from Girl in Hyacinth Blue. I liked how she hung on to the painting and when she had to sell it was smart enough not to just sell it to the first bidder, but was cautious.
  6. The father in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story Outside the cabinet-maker’s. That guy just stuck with me. What a storyteller! I loved how he passed the boring waiting time for a little girl.
  7. A blog post made me think about him just this weekend. The Comte de Valmont from Dangerous Liaisons by Choderlos de Laclos. He thinks he is on top of things when in reality he is simply getting as manipulated as everbody else.
  8. Lord Peter Wimsey from the books by Dorothy L. Sayers. The nobleman detective. Smart, clever, funny, literate, a gentleman.
  9. Marcus Valerius Corvinus from the series of the same name by David Wishart. A very modern Patrician sleuth in ancient Rome, drunkard lover of wine, rich and idle but always on the right side.
  10. Salvo Montalbano from the detective series by Andrea Camilleri. He is THE man. Sorry, Donna Leon, don’t even mention that Brunetti fellow in his presence.

What are your Top Ten Favourite Characters in Books?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top ten tips for new book bloggers

Top Ten Tuesday

Today we are asked to give some tips to new book bloggers. I have been book blogging for a few years now. I can tell new book bloggers what I like in book blogs and what makes them good book blogs in my eyes, but that does not mean that the blogs are successful in terms of “followers”, or whether they will monetize well. These are just my ideas and not carved in stone.

Above all, remember that it is YOUR blog and YOUR voice, don’t try to please people. Here are my ten tips for what they’re worth:

 

Top ten tips for new book bloggers

 

  1. Answer comments on your own blog.
    If I leave a comment and you don’t answer me I will come back. If it happens again I lose interest and won’t be back. Obviously you are not interested in talking with your readers.
  2. Don’t leave comments that don’t mean a thing.
    If I receive a comment that says “Nice choice of books. Check out my post!” I wonder why you even bothered.
  3. Don’t clutter your blog with crap.
    Don’t put fifty buttons, widgets, blinkies and links to challenges in your sidebar so I can’t find what I am looking for because of button overload. Especially consider re-doing your sidebar if its length is longer than the length of your posts on your homepage. I don’t want to scroll down only to see your sidebar with no other  content.
    If you insist on umpteen buttons, blinkies and what not, at least make sure they align, that they don’t mess up the layout and that they look as pleasing as possible.
  4. Don’t review hype books, at least not during the hype.
    If I see the hundredth review of Mockingjay within one week I get incredibly bored. I know the book is out (how can I not know having seen five hundred count down buttons?), I have heard it is FANTASTIC and that it is a must read already.
  5. Don’t use color combos that hurt my eyes.
    If I can’t look at your blog without going blind I won’t go there at all.   
  6. Don’t use ads too obviously.
    I don’t mind inconspicuous affiliate links to books, but if I see google ads at the top of every post, or even worse, flashy ad banners to whatever shop might fit my IP address, I am turned off very quickly.
  7. Try to make the same kinds of posts look the same.
    If you have a regular post on every Tuesday about, let’s say, books you read last week, it is helpful when these posts always look the same, so I can recognize right away the nature of your post. The same goes for reviews, memes etc.
  8. Go on twitter and participate in blogging events, like Bloggiesta, Blogfest, readalongs or maybe a giveaway. People will notice your blog only if you promote it and participate in community life.
  9. If you run a giveaway don’t make it mandatory to follow your blog in order to enter.
    If I have to follow a blog just to enter a giveaway I won’t enter. I won’t clutter up my RSS feed with blogs that I won’t visit regularly. You could argue that if I don’t want to follow you then I don’t deserve winning your book. Fair enough, it’s your blog. But forced followers do not equal loyal readers.
  10. Blog regularly.
    You don’t need to blog every day, but regularly. If a blog is only updated infrequently I will forget about its existence.

What are your Top Ten Tips for new book bloggers?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.

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Top ten books to read in one day

Top Ten TuesdayAt the Bloggiesta chat on Sunday I got the idea to join Top Ten Tuesday. I love lists, so making a list of books every week should be a piece of cake.

This week the topic is “Top Ten Books To Read In A Day”. Let me tell you, for me to read a book in a day the book must be either a (now, the standard word of the reviewer comes into play) “compelling” read or very, very short – a combination of both is recommended. I only have the time to read a couple of hours a day, if that.

I went through my GR read books list and indeed came up with my

Top ten books to read in one day

 

  1. Girl in Hyacinth Blue by Susan Vreeland. Best read for a long time for me.
  2. Misery by Stephen King. Mr. King just HAS to be on this list.
  3. 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff. I read this one in one afternoon, by leaving everything else undone.
  4. Chess Story by Stefan Zweig. You just have to continue until you are finished.
  5. Castle Gripsholm by Kurt Tucholsky. Very lighthearted with lots of positive vibes.
  6. Lost Horizon by James Hilton. I read this a long time ago and remember that I couldn’t put it down.
  7. How to travel with a salmon and other essays by Umberto Eco. Very funny and entertaining.
  8. Any book in the von Igelfeld series by Alexander McCall Smith. I blogged about the first two, Portuguese irregular verbs and The finer points of sausage dogs. So, so funny!
  9.  Perfume by Patrick Süsskind. You better read the book than watch the movie.
  10. The secret diary of Adrian Mole, aged 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend. One of the funniest books ever.

What are your Top Ten Books to read in one day?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You will find tons of more Top Ten Tuesday participants there.