NY Times By the Book Tag

I saw this tag on Amy’s blog over at Inkyspells and she welcomed anyone to take this tag on, so I thought hey, why not. It’s not like I have any other Saturday night plans, other than reading Cinder and picking up another book. I will also probably just binge Reign again (cannot get enough of Queen Mary and Francis and I want them to be happy again) If you don’t already follow her, go and check out Amy’s blog.

What book is on your nightstand right now?

Cinder, it is still Cinder. I feel like Cinder has been my answer for a while now. I just keep getting distracted by Netflix instead of reading it, BUT I do hope to finish it after I publish this post.

What was the last truly great book you read?

It has to be Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I read this back in February and it has just stuck with me. I have heard a lot of negative press surrounding the release of this film – shaming it for misrepresenting disable people and every time an article like that pops up I just want to scream. I am sure it never meant to cause offense and it means soo much to me that it is really annoying me. I don’t want to go on a massive rant because 1) I don’t want to bore you all and 2) I don’t want to ruin the book for you. I know that this book is not part of the literary canon and it is not considered ‘great’ but to me and my heart – it was an excellent book.

If you could meet any writer, dead or alive, who would it be? And what would you want to know?

Oh boy, this is a difficult question…AHHH how can I only pick one? (I am going cheat here )  1. Shakespeare – because I would like to ask him a few questions and give him some credit/appreciation. Although I am not a massive fan of Shakespeare when I first read it, I love to pull his work apart and analysis it like crazy.  2.Charles Dickens- I just love Charles Dickens’s work, maybe this is because of my childhood love for Oliver Twist or maybe it is because of my fondness for Victorian Literature. There are a few contemporary ones as well like – Stephenie Meyer (13 year old me would craaazzy)  John Green (I would probably just shout at him in my head for breaking my heart with The Fault in Our Stars)  and how awesome would it be to meet him! Cassandra Clare because I am currently obsessed with her and finally, Rainbow Rowell because I love her novels.

What books might we be surprised to find on your shelf?


Umm, maybe because recently all I have been reading is contemporary books you would be shocked to learn that I love historical books. Anything by Philippa Gregory, can I meet her as well?  The Other Boleyn Girl, The Virgin’s Lover and The Red Queen are my top three of hers but I own and have read many many more.

How do you organize your personal library?

This one makes me a little bit sad because I think of my wonderfully organised bookcase at home and then I think of my University one. Good News here, though because my stepdad is buying me a new bookcase for my new University house in July…eeeepppp!!! That will mean, no longer have three/four piles of books near my bookcase and have a row of books in front of other on one shelf. I will be in organisation heaven.

But at the moment it looks like this…


What book have you always meant to read and haven’t gotten around to yet?

Animal Farm by George Orwell.

  Disappointing, overrated, just not good: what book did you feel you were supposed to like but didn’t?

Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy. I know, I know as an English Literature student I should absolutely adore Hardy. I just could not get into Tess, I will not let this one novel put me off Hardy. If you love Hardy, please motivate me to read more of his work.

What stories are you drawn to? Any you steer clear of?    

I am drawn to fantasy/dystopian/young adult etc.  I also love thriller books like Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train. As mentioned above, I also like historical fiction. I like to try every genre, so I don’t like to rule out books and I cannot think of any genre that I outright hate.

 If you could require the president Prime Minister to read one book, what would it be?

Umm -maybe 1984 by George Orwell- I would like to watch him read it and see if he thinks he is adding to the paranoia that many people feel because of the government.

What do you plan to read next?

Might start the book on my Contemporary American Narrative module for next year –  (list below – have you read any of them?)

Tim O’Brien – The Things They Carried

Alice Walker- Meridian

Don DeLilo- Falling Man

Bret Easton Ellis- American Psycho 

Cormac McCarthy- Child of God 

Cormac McCarthy-No Country for Old Men 

Dorothy Allison- Bastard Out of Carolina 

Sherman Alexie- The Lone-Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven 

Annie Proulx- Close Range 

I nominate – anyone that wants to do this tag. Just tag me in your post and let me know you have done it so I can check it out.


Join the Conversation


  1. I’ve heard so many good things about Phillipa Gregory’s novels, I’ll have to check them out. I don’t read a lot of historical fiction, but I always enjoy it when I do.

    Even your unorganised bookshelf is more organised than my collection haha!

    Your Contemporary American Narrative module looks interesting! I’ve also been assigned a couple of those books over the years, it’s funny seeing how different universities end up picking similar books 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah you should check her out, sometimes it hard knowing how true to history they are.
      You’ll get your collection sorted soon, I slyly left out the three piles of books surrounding my bookcase though to make it look nicer 😂 too many books and not enough space. One day I will own a library.
      I am excited for that module, I wanted to do the Gothic module however my friends in third year warned me that it is run really badly, so I decided to go with American as I like the lecturer. I’ll just read be gothic books for fun.
      Which books have you read from the list? I always find that interesting ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah, it’s always a shame when an interesting module is run poorly. I’ve had that a couple of times. But at least you can read the books without the stress of the assignments haha!

        I was assigned to read Meridan by Alice Walker for my Writing America module in second year, but I can’t remember if I actually ended up reading it or not! I read Falling Man for my Contemporary Genre module on my MA when we talked about post-9/11 fiction, and I read American Psycho for my Neoliberal Fictions module on my MA. We were assigned The Road my Cormac McCarthy for my Contemporary Genre module too, and I’m interested in reading more of his books, it’s so interesting that you’ll be doing two of his. Your reading list looks like it’s got loads of different stuff on there, so it should be great to study 😀


  2. I really recommend reading Animal Farm 🙂 it’s an amazing short read! I completely get what you mean about Tess. That was the first Hardy I read. I enjoyed reading it, and I really liked Hardy’s writing style, but it was too depressing. I went on to read Jude the Obscure, and it was so emotionally exhausting that I gave up on Hardy. A few people have recommended that I read A Pair of Blue Eyes though; one of his earlier, less-depressing works. Maybe try that one?

    I’ve not read American Psycho, but a friend of mine LOVES it. There’s a movie out too, but it’s gory. Not my kind of book 🙂


  3. Have wanted to do this tag for a while but I’m going to wait until my exams are over!

    I feel I ought to love Hardy, I love most of his contemporaries, but Far From the Madding Crowd was a big let down for me which has put me off many others! 😦 It’s also funny you should mention Philippa Gregory as she was my go-to author when I was a teenager, I fell out of love with her books though which is a shame as I have such fond memories of them! If you haven’t read anything by Alison Weir, I suggest you check her out, both her fiction and non-fiction are amazing!


  4. Tim O’Brien’s “The Things They Carried” is a favorite of mine as are all of his books. I’ve also read “Bastard Out of Carolina”. Loved it. And “American Psycho” is creepalicious. Your blog is delightful and great fun! So lovely to meet you. Thank you for brightening my day!

    Liked by 1 person

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