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  • I read a lot, and I have a lot of opinions, so I can't believe I haven't made a list like this before. If you are even a little bit like me or you want to get a peek into my psyche (you probs don't), these are the books to read.

Posts Tagged ‘memes’

Steal this meme!

Posted on September 16th, 2010 by annakjarzab

Alex posted this meme on her blog, and because I’m lazy about blog content today, I’m stealing it!

5 Books I’ve Read Recently
1. It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini
2. Our Tragic Universe by Scarlett Thomas
3. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle (fun fact here!)
4. Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen
5. The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

5 Books I’m Planning to Read (in the near future)
1. Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
2. Dreamland by Sarah Dessen
3. Blameless by Gail Carriger
4. Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund
5. Autobiography by Agatha Christie

5 of My Favorite Books
1. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
2. Hey Nostradamus! by Douglas Coupland
3. Ex Libris: Confessions of a Common Reader by Anne Fadiman
4. Atonement by Ian McEwan
5. The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford

5 of My Least Favorite Books
1. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
2. I Am Charlotte Simmons by Tom Wolfe
3. The Frog King by Adam Davies
4. The Emperor’s Children by Claire Messud
5. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

5 of My Favorite Book-to-Film Adaptations
1. Atonement
3. Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist
4. The Princess Bride
5. Clueless

Forget it, Jake, it’s Fake Cover Town

Posted on July 28th, 2009 by annakjarzab


First of all, just in case you missed it, I posted some thoughtsicles about the recent flurry of discussion around the cover of Justine Larbalestier‘s brilliant new novel, Liar, on The A Team yesterday. Speaking of The A Team, I’m going to see Joanna tonight! Many nachos and martinis will be consumed, I assure you.

Second of all, 100 Scope Notes has started a little meme called Create Your Debut YA Cover, where you follow a bunch of steps, including generating a fake name, a fake title, and a fake stock photo. It’s pretty fun, and if you thought the REAL cover of my REAL debut YA novel was creepy, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Presenting Judy J. Clark’s debut novel, Crow:


Sorry you guys. I had to post it, those are the rules. I realize it’s terrifying. Sleep with the light on.

Book Meme

Posted on April 23rd, 2009 by annakjarzab

I took this from Diana Peterfreund, who grabbed it from The Book Smugglers. I haven’t done a meme in a while, this should be fun.

1. What author do you own the most books by?

Well, like I’ve said before I’m not really an author fan, I’m a book fan, so I don’t tend to own any author’s entire corpus, but I guess I have at least one copy of all of Jane Austen’s books, and I have all of John Green’s books and Diana Peterfreund’s books (including an ARC of Rampant, which I didn’t realize was getting a new cover but apparently it is), several Agatha Christie novels and many of Shakespeare’s plays. Oh, you know what, I have a copy of almost everything Sylvia Plath ever wrote, too.

2. What book do you own the most copies of?

Probably Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre. I think I may have three copies of Jane Eyre, two of which are the same edition.

3. What fictional character are you secretly in love with?

Jason from Hey Nostradamus! by Douglas Coupland.

4. What book have you read more than any other?

Probably The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford, Pride and Prejudice, Hey Nostradamus!, Atonement by Ian McEwan, Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie, Ex Libris by Anne Fadiman, The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin, A Wrinkle in Time, The Phantom Tollbooth, and The Little White Horse by Elizabeth Goudge.

5. What was your favorite book when you were ten years old?

To the best of my recollection, The Little White Horse.

6. What is the worst book you’ve read in the past year?

I don’t often read bad books, mostly because I’m good at picking out books I would like (and my friends are good at recommending I read things that I’ll like), and everything I’ve read in the last year has been decent to great, so I’m going to go with The Emperor’s Children, which I read at the beginning of 2008 and definitely did not respond to. I’m open to arguments about why it’s good, but I personally didn’t connect with it at all. Vile Bodies would be another one I’ve read in the last year that I didn’t hate but also didn’t like, which is too bad because I love Brideshead Revisited and Evelyn Waugh in general.

7. What is the best book you’ve read in the past year?

East of Eden.

8. If you could tell everyone you tagged* to read one book, what would it be?

East of Eden.

9. What is the most difficult book you’ve ever read?

This Way for the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen by Tadeusz Borowski, not because it’s especially difficult to read, but because the subject matter is at once deeply engrossing and horrific and at times funny, and I felt like I was missing about fifty layers of subtext, socio-political commentary, and philosophical resonance. I know I should go back to it, but I don’t want to, even though I really loved it. My relationship with this book is highly dysfunctional.

Also, Crime and Punishment, both for length and for sheer boredom. I really disliked it. And Les Miserables for length and, at times, sheer boredom, but I came out of it a big fan.

10. Do you prefer the French or the Russians?

Neither. I like the British. No offense. I’m not a big fan of the Russians (obvs), although I’d like to read Anna Karenina someday. And I’m not sure I’ve read a French novel other than The Stranger, which isn’t my favorite, and a few things by Anna Gavalda, which I loved but I don’t think they qualify for this question. Oh, no, I’ve read some Dumas. Okay, I guess the French by default.

11. Shakespeare, Milton or Chaucer?

I don’t think that Shakespeare v. Chaucer is a fair comparison, so I’m going to say both of them and not Milton. I love love love Chaucer, but he and Shakespeare did wildly different things for the most part, and I love Shakespeare, too. I’m not sure I’ve ever read any Milton, not even Paradise Lost. You can’t read everything!

12. Austen or Eliot?

Austen. I haven’t read any Eliot, so I honestly can’t compare, although in the end I’d probably choose Austen anyway.

13. What is the biggest or most embarrassing gap in your reading?

American Literature before 1900. I’m not a huge Am Lit person anyway, and I only took one class on it in college and it was American Literature II, so yeah, I’m missing the old stuff. Although I did read Charlotte Temple, which some people say is the first American novel, and I didn’t like it very much, and I read Huckleberry Finn, which I liked a lot. Although, honestly, there are SO many gaps in my reading it’s hard to choose just one. Pretty much all genres (romance, mystery, thriller, science fiction, fantasy) have been neglected by me these past twenty-two years.

14. What is your favorite novel?

Hey Nostradamus!, I think, followed swiftly by Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford and Pride and Prejudice.

15. Play?

Twelfth Night and Proof.

16. Poem?

I’m not big on poetry, but I really like Sylvia Plath’s “Daddy” and John Donne’s “A Valediction Forbidding Mourning”.

17. Essay?

“Words on a Flyleaf” by Anne Fadiman or “Up, Simba” by Daniel Foster Wallace.

19. Non Fiction

Savage Beauty by Nancy Milford.

20. Graphic Novel?

Haven’t read any. Sorry! I read a lot of Archie comics when I was young, does that count/

21. Science Fiction?

Stranger in a Strange Land, The Door Into Summer, and The Rolling Stones–all by Robert Heinlein. Also, hello, A Wrinkle in Time.

22. Who is your favorite writer?

I don’t really have one, although a short list would include Nancy Mitford, Jane Austen, Evelyn Waugh, and Douglas Coupland.

23. Who is the most over rated writer alive today?

Toni Morrison, and I say that liking a lot of her stuff, but the Oprah effect…

24. What are you reading right now?

Gentlemen by Michael Northrup and The Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji. I also just got my hand on an ARC of Justine Larbalestier’s Liar, so I’m eager to start that.

25. Best Memoir?

I just read The Glass Castle early this year and really liked it.

26. Best History?

Sorry, I got nothin’.

27. Best Mystery or Noir?

I’m a HUGE Agatha Christie fan, and in my humble opinion her best books (of the ones I’ve read) are Sleeping Murder (Miss Marple’s last case), Curtain (Poirot’s last case), The Man in the Brown Suit, The Tuesday Night Club (now called The Thirteen Problems), The Murder of Rodger Ackroyd, and And Then There Were None. I’m not so well-versed in mystery and noir otherwise, which is sad, although I really liked Jonathan Lethem’s Motherless Brooklyn which is some more modern noir.

*I’m not planning to tag anyone. Although, I mean, Shannel, if you want to fill this out, give it a whirl. You, too, Kim.


Posted on January 30th, 2009 by annakjarzab

I got tagged on Facebook with this meme by four different people, so while it’s not in my nature to post notes on Facebook (I like to keep it simple on that thing), I thought I’d post it here so that everybody can enjoy it. Honestly, I can’t think of 25 people to tag, so I’m going to go with: Kim, you should do this. Also, everybody else on the whole Internet.

Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

(To do this, go to “notes” under tabs on your profile page, paste these instructions in the body of the note, type your 25 random things, tag 25 people (in the right hand corner of the app) then click post.)

1. I was a competitive swimmer for several years and I was my strongest and fastest junior year of high school. Last night I went to the Y to swim laps and 1,000 yards really tuckered me out. This is so sad. But, then again, 1,000 yards!

2. I also played water polo at the hole position. I was even sort of okay!

3. I really like public transportation. Subways, elevated trains, trams, buses, commuter trains, ferry boats…I love it all. My dad is a transportation planner and has been since I was little, so maybe that’s it. Maybe it’s genetic.

4. However, I also love driving. That is genetic. My dad loves it, too.

5. Like Sara Bennett Wealer, I was a Kappa Alpha Theta in college and I really loved it. I even signed my contract in my favorite set of letters. I really admire my chapter and my school’s Greek system for sticking together and growing when there were all manners of obstacles in their way.

6. Apparently I’ve just signed away fourteen Mondays of my life to play in an amateur dart league. The truth is, though, that I’m not very good at darts.

7. I based the town in my debut novel, All Unquiet Things, on the town my family moved to when I was sixteen. Or, rather, the towns. It’s an amalgam.

8. I double degreed in English and political science in college, which is different than double majoring–I got two pieces of paper, one that says Bachelor’s of Arts and one that says Bachelor’s of Science. I had to take forty extra units to score that second one, which seems kind of excessive, but I couldn’t not do it. As a result, I overloaded almost every quarter for four years. It was quite a slog.

6. I’m addicted to Diet Coke. Well, maybe not, but I do really like it and have one or more every day.

7. I really love romantic comedies, and I was just telling a new friend yesterday how they sort of help me through writer’s block because they require almost no cognitive ability to be enjoyable, so the back of my brain can work out problems while the front of my brain thinks it’s relaxing and being entertained (science!). Anyway, Sweet Home Alabama is one of my favorite romantic comedies, and last night I was in our bar playing trivia and a guy came in with a baby strapped to him and I actually had the opportunity to say “You have a baby…in a bar!” when it’s appropriate, not just when I think it’s randomly funny, which I often do.

8. I make it a personal goal to read fifty books a year. I’ve been doing this for three years now (and counting) and I’ve gotten to at least 60 every year. I’m at six as of now.

9. I like savory more than sweet, but I am a sucker for Kit Kats, Snickers, and peanut butter M&Ms. This is why I don’t keep them in the house.

10. I don’t have television. I have a television in my apartment, but the only thing it’s hooked up to is a DVD player. This is not a quasi-hipster or Madonna-esque protest against the boob tube, but is in fact the result of a combination of poverty and laziness. That’s okay, though. You can watch almost anything online. And I do.

11. I’ve recently discovered that I’m way more like Blair Waldorf than is probably good. One essential difference between us is that she owns more headbands. I’m working to remedy this, although I will probably never catch up.

12. I love Hanson. You knew this, but I think it’s important enough to mention again.

13. I’m Polish.

14. I’m unofficially obsessed with the Mitford sisters, particularly Nancy Mitford, the author of two of my favorite novels: The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate.

15. I moved to California after getting my driver’s license in Illinois, and I waited a year and a half to get a California one because of a law in California saying that you have to retake the driving test if you’re under eighteen. Too bad there’s another law that says you have to get a new driver’s license 10 days after moving to California. Whoops! I actually did get pulled over once, not because of anything I’d done, but because my brother, who had insisted on pumping the gas because “you don’t know how to do it” (??), had left the gas cap on. The cop pulled me over to tell me, but he did look at my license and ask, “Did you just move here?” I was like, “Yeah…” even though we’d lived there a year at that point. We even had California plates! It was pretty dumb all around.

16. I don’t have any pets of my own in NYC, but my family has a dog, a beagle named Valentine. We call her Val. She doesn’t know that she was thisclose to being named Cubone or Growlith or something (thanks to my sister’s Pokemon obsession).

17. My favorite song on the new Andrew Bird album, Noble Beast, is “Not a Robot, But a Ghost”. “Anonanimal” is pretty great, too.

18. I saw Titanic four separate times in theaters when it came out in 1997 and then not once again in its entirety until 2008, even though I owned the VHS tapes and now own the DVD. I still love it.

19. In fact, Kate Winslet is probably the only Hollywood actress I care about at all anymore. I just feel like she spends time making worthwhile movies and not alternately courting and then complaining about the paparazzi. She doesn’t make a spectacle of herself, she’s talented, and she seems very good-natured. That’s really all I ask for in a performer or artist of any sort.

20. I make a playlist on my iPod for every season and every novel.

21. My favorite color is blue.

22. My eyes are green (I’m running out of steam here).

23. I dyed my hair red for years, and it actually looked really good on me. But red fades faster than any other color and it’s expensive to keep up, so I’ve spent the last two years growing out my natural hair color, which is like a dirty dishwater blonde-brown and is completely unremarkable. I still haven’t grown it all the way out yet, which is annoying, and I’ve told myself that once my hair is completely natural again I have to wait a year before dying it red again, if I decide I want to.

24. I just started a Tumblr exclusively for uploading the music that I’m listening to, especially the music that’s influencing my work at the moment. It’s called aTunes, because that’s how I roll. Checkitowt! (I can only post one song a day on it, so right now all that’s up there is Andrew Bird’s “Not a Robot, But a Ghost”, which I talked about above.)

25. One of my bigger regrets was that I never studied abroad in college.

Phew! That’s probably too much information about me for people to stand, but it just happened. I need to leave my house. I’m feeling a little jumpy. I also need to work. Maybe I’ll take Viola out into the world.

Sneak peekery

Posted on May 14th, 2008 by Anna Jarzab

Okay, so I might get in a lot of trouble for this and I might have to take it down someday (hey, I don’t know the rules about revealing stuff before your agent goes to publishers or whatnot!), but some other writers are doing this meme with their unpubbed works and since Diana Peterfreund tagged the entire Internet, AND even though most of them are published and I’m not (yet! I’m in a pos. thinking mood), I’m going to do the same. I figure this is kind of okay since, you know, it’s so random and out of context.

1. Pick up the nearest book.

2. Open to page 123.

3. Find the fifth sentence.

4. Post the next three sentences.

So here it is: the first time anybody outside myself, my agent, and a few friends and family are reading a bit of the (quasi) finished version of AUT.

She shook her head and hopped off the bed. “Nothing. Ready to go?”

So was it good for you? 🙂