Monday, 26 May 2014

Armchair BEA: Introduction & Literature

First of all, let me introduce myself!

Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging? Where in the world are you blogging from?

Hi! I'm Cynthia. I'm 20 years old and studying Classics at university. I'm either blogging from Hong Kong or from England, depending on what time of the year you find me. Right now I am in rainy England!

I've been blogging for over two months (since 16 March!). I got into blogging because I was starting to mourn the fact that I hardly read anymore, and then I realised if I started a book blog, I would have to carve out the time to read! And also because I realised that all the good books I'd read over the years and rated on Goodreads – I simply had no idea why I liked those books anymore. Why did I give this book a 4-star rating? I don't remember. So here I am, motivating myself to write reviews so that I can remind myself in the future why I liked a book.

Describe your blog in just one sentence. Then, list your social details – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. – so we can connect more online.

YA and fantasy book blog with a heavy focus on LGBTQ books, featuring two adorable jellyfish!

Twitter | Goodreads | Bloglovin

What was your favorite book read last year? What’s your favorite book so far this year?

The Secret History by Donna Tartt was my favourite read last year, and The Miseducation of Cameron Post by emily m. danforth is my favourite read so far this year. If you had to make me give one book as my all-time favourite, I'd probably say The Secret History, actually. CLASSICISTS GONE WILD. (I mean, it's so much more than that, but hey, as a Classicist myself, of course I'm drawn to that.)

What genre do you read the most?

Fantasy! Fantasy is probably my top genre. I just love high fantasy, urban fantasy, any sort of fantasy really. But the ones which feel epic and sprawling are so gooood. I love magic and monsters and intrigue and quests and journeys through strange lands. I just think it's such an imaginative and beautiful genre and the possibilities are endless! Contemporary is also delicious. I'll love anything with interesting characters and a good romance. (:

Spread the love by naming your favorite blogs/bloggers (doesn’t necessarily have to be book blogs/bloggers).

I'm gonna name three lovely people:

Now let me talk about literature...
What do you think of when you think of literature? Classics, contemporary, genre, or something else entirely? We are leaving this one up to you to come up with and share the literature that you want to chat about the most. Feel free to share a list of your favorites, break down your favorite genre, feature your favorite authors, and be creative about all things literature in general.

What do I think of when I think of literature? Though for pleasure I read mainly YA, that's not really the first thing my brain goes to when I hear the word 'literature'. The first thing that comes to mind would be literary novels. And I do read those! Like I said, The Secret History is one of my all-time favourites.

I also love Alan Hollinghurst's novels, though I've only read two so far – The Line of Beauty and The Stranger's Child, but they were both excellent. The most popular review on Goodreads recommends The Line of Beauty to "people who like old-timey british novels about rich people, but want more gay sex", so if that sounds like your thing, YOU SHOULD TOTALLY READ IT. Wonderful social satire and unbelievably rich characterisation and profound human insight. So. Damn. Good.

The second thing that comes to mind? I'm a Classicist. So... I think of things like the Iliad, the Aeneid, of Ovid's Metamorphoses (probably my favourite Classical work), Catullus' poetry, and all these lovely things. But sadly, because I'm studying them, I often find myself reading them not for pleasure, but for work... ): ):

And then I start to think about other books. Fantasy books, YA books... Now since I talk about YA a lot here anyway, it's easy to see what kind of things I like in YA just by browsing around! In YA I particularly like to see out books with LGBTQ characters. I will read practically anything in YA, but avoid most mystery and horror books. I'm the kind of person who's much more into character-driven stuff than plot-driven stuff, by the way. If it isn't obvious. Half the time, if the characters are good enough, I won't care if the plot is nowhere to be seen!

But for fantasy, my favourite authors are Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. I love the Discworld series soooo much, especially the books about the Ankh-Morpork City Watch. VIMES. *__* And I love Brandon Sanderson's Mistborn series. Sadly, I find it difficult to find the time to read a lot of high fantasy books because they're just so long. It's not that I don't love long books, but they're daunting and I need to find a lot of time for them! If I start a book, I like to read it in as short a span of time as possible, so I don't like the idea of spreading out a book like a chapter or a couple dozen pages a day and finishing it in a month or two. I want to just start them and do nothing else but read for a few days! I really want to read Brandon Sanderson's other books, especially The Stormlight Archive, and I want to read The Kingkiller Chronicle and A Game of Thrones and all these exciting things. But these will have to wait until I've settled into this blog more. (I have yet to review any adult fantasy books on here. THAT WILL HAPPEN SOON MY LOVELIES I PROMISE. By soon I mean maybe in like... August.)

Um. Okay. That was rambly. But thanks for stopping by and please come say hi! (: Don't forget to leave a link to your introduction post if you're participating!


  1. Great intro post! I've been wanting to try a Donna Tartt book since forever (just don't know which one too pick....) and The Miseducation of Cameron Post is on my tbr (hoping to get to it this summer)

    Thanks for the shout out! <3

    I liked Iliad and Aeneid, too! And I took Latin in HS, so I'm familiar with Catullus' work and a bunch of other classics as well.
    I want to read A Game of Thrones one day, but right now I'm fine with following the tv series ;)

  2. PICK THE SECRET HISTORY PICK THE SECRET HISTORY. Best book ever. Apparently The Little Friend is not great anyway, so definitely not that one. And a great character from The Secret History appears as a blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameo in The Goldfinch, from what I hear (haven't had a chance to read The Goldfinch yet) so you may wanna read The Secret History first to appreciate the cameo. ;)

    Yay I hope you enjoy The Miseducation of Cameron Post! It's a book that is most dear to my heart, so. <3

    I wouldn't say I like the Iliad and the Aeneid, per se. *shifty eyes* I did have to study them in a rather gruelling fashion, so I've developed a kind of fondness for those books in a "god you sucked my life out of me BUT I SURVIVED SO HAH" kind of way. I mean, I liked the Iliad before I lost my life to translating 18 books of it from the Greek, and now I sort of look at it and shudder in fond horror. If that's a thing. (odi et amo, etc.) The Aeneid, on the other hand. *kicks Aeneas* I can't stand Aeneas. The Metamorphoses is hands down the best epic, because Ovid actually knows the meaning of the word fun.

    You took Latin in HS? :D :D Yay!

    I don't even watch GoT I watched like one or two episodes somewhere in the middle because my boyfriend was watching it but I keep avoiding the whole thing because it's too hyped. But I will get round to it some day.

  3. Haha, okay. I'll try The Secret History then. Hopefully I'll like it *fingers crossed*

    Me too.

    Well, I didn't have to read them in Greek so it wasn't so bad ;) I think my favorite was Odyssey and *whispers* Aeneid. Illiad was just so-so. The Metamorphoses..... I'm pretty sure we had to read that one too, but I can't say I remember much... if anything...

    Haha yes, it was that or French. Maybe French would have been better but the teacher was CRAZY, while the one who teached Latin was awesome.

    Oh you should. It's good (I usually binge watch it when a season ends)

  4. Hahaha. The Odyssey is pretty good. I've only ever had to read like the tiniest portion of that in Greek so I am still able to remain calm about the Odyssey. A lot of stuff actually happens in that one, which is nice. Nothing much really happens in the Iliad but I like it because Achilles' character is endlessly fascinating to me. (It also helps that I read a lot of Achilles/Patroclus fanfiction a few years ago.) The Metamorphoses is just about all those wonderful transformations, people turning into birds and trees all over the place, and it's just like... a whole lot of interesting little stories strung together. A very different kind of epic, defying all the genre conventions. That's why I love Ovid, because he's so ~hipster.

    I did French for a couple of years but I gotta say, spoken languages at just not for me. I also did Spanish, and Japanese, but I just fail at all these. Dead languages are way better.

    Binge watching sounds like a good idea. Well, maybe this summer...

  5. Hey! The jellyfish are super adorable, and I'm also happy to find another blogger that blogs a lot about LGBTQ and fantasy! (too bad there aren't more books that combine both of those, sadface).

    You seem like a blogger I'd really get along with, based on your intro... I hope that doesn't sound too pretentious! Here's my intro.

  6. Great to 'meet' you! I just love the reasons behind why you started this blog. I hope you're thoroughly enjoying being a book blogger :)

  7. That's interesting. I loved Latin, but I think I like languages that I can actually use in the every day life more. I did a year of Spanish too, and Japanese is my second language (English is the third). Oh and I also studied Korean for a semester and I really hope to continue it soon... (I want to understand more of the K-dramas I watch, haha)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...