BBAW New Treasure: Interview Swap

I signed up for the BBAW interview swap and Reagan of Miss Remmers’ Reviews was assigned as my partner. Reagan teaches 9th Grade Reading at an AA High School in South Dakota and her mission is to instill in students a passion for recreational reading. As a result, she reads and reviews a lot of YA in her blog and I’m so happy that we have that in common. Please join me in welcoming the wonderful Miss Remmers!

Wow, so you’re a teacher who likes to recommend books to your students. What do you do to encourage your students to read?
It’s really important for me to have a list of books to recommend to students. Right now I’m recommending The Hunger Games, I Am Number Four, Before I Fall, 13 to Life, Hex Hall, and Need.

Has a student ever recommended a book that you ended up liking?
I have been keeping a list of books that students have recommended to me, however, I have yet to actually read one. It’s only the fourth week of school and I have a pretty hefty TBR pile. But hopefully, eventually, I will read my students’ recommendations.

Looking at your blog, I see that you read a lot of YA. I also read a lot of YA so I’m interested to know if it is your favorite genre or do you explore YA books for your students?
I really love reading YA and it is extremely convenient that it is also the genre my students’ prefer. 🙂 I will sometimes be offered a fantastic book for review that is more Adult or Chick-Lit that sounds fantastic and I end up loving it. But I mostly try to stick to YA for my students’ sake (and for my enjoyment).

What are some of the best books that you’ve read this year?
Wow! Hard question! While I can’t pick just one, here is a small list: The Hunger Games, Before I Fall, I Am Number Four, Hush Hush, Beastly, Thirteen Reason Why, Some Girls Are, and Cracked Up to Be. Okay, that was a bit longer than I had wanted it to be. 🙂

If someone’s experiencing reader’s slump, what’s a book that you’ll recommend to get that person back into the game?
Definitely The Hunger Games, if you haven’t read it already. It really depends on the person though. Right now my freshmen are really getting burnt out on vampires and werewolves so I’ve been recommending Need by Carrie Jones. I’m also a big fan of The DUFF. Right now I’m currently reading Matched by Ally Condie; it’s really fantastic, it’s a lot like The Hunger Games in terms of government and lifestyle. Whew, that was a hard question too!

Contemporary YA, epic fantasy, urban fantasy, science fiction or dystopian – what’s your preference?
I’m going to have to say Contemporary YA.

One of my favorite things about book blogging is the wonderful community. I don’t get to talk about books with my friends so I enjoy reaching out to fellow bloggers. What’s your favorite aspect of book blogging?
I would definitely have to agree with you, Chachic. I love being able to talk books, authors, and literature with other readers. I spend most of my time trying to persuade students to read, book blogging is a perfect way for me to relax and connect with readers who I don’t have to convince that reading is (and can be) a fun, relaxing, recreational activity.

Ever since I started blogging, I’ve become more aware of what’s out there and this lead to my TBR growing exponentially. Has blogging changed your reading habits? Do you read books that you normally wouldn’t read now that you have a blog?
Another fantastic question! Since book blogging I have read more books in the past year than I have in the previous three. Blogging has really kept me focused in my reading and given me goals to accomplish. Blogging has become a part of my life that I hope to never give up.

Since I live in the Philippines, I’d like to know what you think of international book bloggers?
I was really excited to read your blog and see that you were from the Philippines! I’ve never “met” an international book blogger! I think international book bloggers are setting a spark around the world that will eventually catch fire. From a teaching stand point, to me international book bloggers represent review diversity for my own students and students across the world. They bring a different kind of culture to their reviews and book thoughts, it’s extremely refreshing. As a fellow book blogger, I would love to see more international book bloggers; it would be a great way to connect with readers around the world.
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Thank you for your thoughtful answers, Reagan! I enjoyed doing this interview with you and I look forward to being a guest reviewer over at your blog. To my blog readers, please drop by Miss Remmers’ Reviews to see my answers to Reagan’s interview questions.

BBAW First Treasure

This is the first time that I joined BBAW so instead of writing about a blog that I discovered since BBAW last year, I’m going to write about two of the first book blogs that I started following. Two blogs because I can’t remember which of them I started following first although I do know that I started checking out their blogs even before I started my own blog and even before I discovered the wonder that is Google Reader. This first one is Angieville by Angie.

Angie’s blog is chock-full of great content. Whenever she writes a good review of a book, I’m tempted to get that book right away. She reads a lot of fantasy and YA and we share some favorite authors such as Robin McKinley, Megan Whalen Turner, Tamora Pierce, Kristin Cashore and many more. Ever since I started following Angie’s blog, I’ve been introduced to other amazing authors like Sharon Shinn, Juliet Marillier and Ilona Andrews. I also love her meme, Retro Fridays which highlights under-the-radar books. I try to participate in that meme as much as I can. Plus, Angie is such a nice person, you can’t help but admire her! She’s one of my favorite bloggers out there and I always trust her recommendations.

The second blog that I followed early on is The Book Smugglers by Ana and Thea.

I think The Book Smugglers is a pretty popular blog with a huge following, mainly because they have so many fun activities over there. Both Ana and Thea seem like they’re always full of energy and whenever they give a book a high rating, you can really feel their enthusiasm coming off the computer screen. What’s amazing is that they both reading different types of books (like Ana likes romances but Thea doesn’t) but they enjoy doing joint reviews, which I like reading because they’re voices are so distinct.

So there you have it, folks – the two blogs that I first started following. I’m curious to see which blogs are featured in other people’s BBAW First Treasure posts.

Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2010

It’s here! The Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2010 is here! I’m so excited to participate. I only started my blog this year so this is the first time that I’m going to join and I hope I’ll get to know a lot of other bloggers during the week. The theme for this year is A Treasure Chest of Infinite Books and Infinite Blogs.

Here are the daily topics from the BBAW site:

Monday—First Treasure
We invite you to share with us about a great new book blog you’ve discovered since BBAW last year! If you are new to BBAW or book blogging, share with us the very first book blog you discovered. Tell us why this blog rocks your socks off and why you keep going back for more.

Tuesday—New Treasure—Interview Swap
Post the interview you did with your BBAW Interview Partner. If you didn’t sign up in time, please email bookbloggerappreciationweekATgmailDOTcom because there is a waiting list.

Wednesday—Unexpected Treasure
We invite you to share with us a book or genre you tried due to the influence of another blogger. What made you cave in to try something new and what was the experience like?

Thursday—Forgotten Treasure
Sure we’ve all read about Freedom and Mockingjay but we likely have a book we wish would get more attention by book bloggers, whether it’s a forgotten classic or under marketed contemporary fiction. This is your chance to tell the community why they should consider reading this book!

Friday—Future Treasures
We’ve been visiting each other and getting to know each other better…now is your chance to share what you enjoyed about BBAW and also what your blogging goals are for the next year!

This reminds me that I need to start working on my posts for the week. My interview partner is Reagan of Miss Remmers’ Review and we already answered each other’s interview questions so watch out for that on Tuesday. Who else is going to participate in BBAW 2010? 🙂