Jan 14, 2009

Eva's Bookshelf Meme, Snow and Delurking

Mariel, Annie and Alessandra tagged me for Eva's Bookshelf Meme ages ago:

Tell me about...

The book that’s been on your shelves the longest: I actually lost many of the childhood books when I moved here from Lisbon :( I think the oldest I have are several books by Alice Vieira (a children's author I love... there's a book of hers in particular I often daydream about translating and introducing to the world), Gods, Men and Monsters from the Greek Myths by Michael Gibson, and a collection of fairy tale picture books. Also, I recently rediscovered a 6-volume edition of the One Thousand and One Nights that used to be my mother's (and which got her kicked out of a very strict Catholic school when she was 15, lol).

A book that reminds you of something specific in your life (a person, a place, a time, etc.): The books I read the summer when I was 20 always remind me of that time. They were Middlesex and The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides, all the Hitchhiker's books by Douglas Adams, The Once and Future King by T.H. White, White Apples by Jonathan Carroll and Big Fish by Daniel Wallace. There were others, but these in particular remind me of beautiful days when I'd sit outside in the shade reading after lunch, of listening to Nick Cave's The Boatman's Call and to Belle & Sebastian obsessively, and of everything that was happening in my life at the time.

A book you acquired in some interesting way (gift, serendipity in a used bookstore, prize, etc.): I almost have a good story to tell here: At the airport in Inverness they had a bookshelf in the departures lounge where travellers could leave books they no longer wanted for other travellers to pick up. There was a donation box for an animal charity beside it in case you wanted to leave something for each book you took. I didn't take anything because I simply couldn't fit a single more book in my bags, but how cool an idea is that?

The most recent addition to your shelves: Hahaha.

Actually, the very last one was The Gormeghast Trilogy by Mervyn Peake, via Bookmooch. The sender took a while to get it posted, and to make it up to me they also included a copy of Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut and two organic chocolate bars. How sweet is that? I love Bookmooch.

A book that’s been with you to the most places: Hmmm. I don't normally take books when I travel because I know I'm going to buy even more books and have enough trouble bringing everything back as it is. So I don't think I have a book that has been with me to more than one place. Well, I guess there's McSweeney's Enchanted Chamber of Astonishing Stories edited by Michael Chabon, which I bought in Inverness, took back to Nottingham, and then brought with me when I moved back.

A bonus book that you want to talk about but doesn’t fit into the other questions:
I love my edition of Stardust. It has what is probably my favourite cover (not counting the Charles Vess cover of the illustrated edition), and you don't see it all that often, I don't think:

Now for tagging: I don't think Lu, Ramya or Kim have done it yet, or have they? Please ignore me if you have. Anyway, I don't want you to feel pressured or anything, but if you feel like doing it, I'd love to see your answers.

Now allow me to share some pictures of something very exciting that happened last Friday:

And before you laugh at my puny snow, keep in mind that the last time this happened had been the day I turned 12. It was all gone by Saturday day, sadly, but it was fun while it lasted.

And now something I saw at Michelle and Memory's blogs: an invitation to delurk.

Let me start by saying that I don't think there's anything wrong with lurking. I've done it at blogs, message boards and other internet dwelling-places. I mean this to be an invitation, not a demand. I don't at all resent it if people don't comment.

But I'm curious. Very curious. I know all my regular commenters, but sometimes I wonder who else might be reading. I especially wonder if I have any regular readers who aren't bloggers themselves. If so, how did they find me? Do they read many other book blogs? Who are they? What are their favourite books? I also wonder if I have any readers who blog about things other than books. I wonder if I have readers whose blogs I haven't visited. So if anyone out there is so inclined, please say hi. I'd really love to hear from you.


  1. I'm not laughing at your snow. We don't get much snow here either.

  2. I don't generally leave a lot of comments, but I have you in my Reader! And I'm not laughing at your snow. I'm wondering if you'd like to trade for a while. I'm here in -4 degree Minne-snow-ta. You'd get a lot! :-) I think it's fun to see people get excited about a little bit of snow. I would too if I didn't have a foot or two of it outside my door for 4 months every year. ;-)


  3. Bermudaonion: I know not everyone lives in places that get snow, but I always get a tad jealous when I see other bloggers post gorgeous Winter Wonderland pictures. It was so fun to finally get some myself!

    Lezlie: I'm sure I'd also get tired of that much snow! Neil Gaiman is also in Minnesota and he's been posting about how horribly cold it's been there lately. It definitely doesn't sound pleasant.

  4. That books at the airport thing is such a brilliant idea! Things like that should be more common.

    By the way, I just gave you an award - take a look at my blog to see! :)

  5. What an interesting meme! Thanks for tagging me, Nymeth! I am so bad at doing memes but I will try to complete this one soon!:)

  6. Hi. :-D

    I'm not a lurker, but I'm not a regular commenter, either. Is there a name for us in-betweeners?

  7. Even though I'm a strong proponent of The Middle Shelf, I will admit to owning three editions of Stardust -- the Vess-illustrated one, the straight-prose one and the read-by-Gaiman-unabridged-audiobook-oh-my-word-he-could-read-the-phonebook-and-I'd-listen one.

  8. Your snow is quite pretty compared to the stuff we get here. I love how snow looks overlaid on green. It's a pretty common sight on the west coast of Canada, but here in the middle it's mostly just muddy and brown after it's been on the ground for a day or so.

  9. I'd never laugh at those snow pictures because that's about as much snow as I'd likely get in central Texas :)

    And, that's cool about the airport shelf. At my old gym we had the same thing but most of the books I found were romance novels so I never took one. Still a good idea I think.

  10. Oh, I really hope you do translate the book...sounds like it would be a wonderful gift to the world! I'd certainly buy a copy!

    And that shelf at the airport is pure genius...such a simple, but brilliant idea!

    That Stardust cover is gorgeous...I've never seen it before.

    And laugh at your snow...never! It made me so indescribably happy that you received such a special gift! Same with Chris and his snow earlier this winter. :)

  11. Consider this my official de-lurking! Hi! I've been reading your blog for about as long as I've been in the blogging world (which, admittedly, isn't all that long!) and I love what you have to say! I'm also a little intimidated by those bookshelf pictures. :)

  12. Hey I know you know me and my blog but so you know, I'm always reading, even if I don't leave comments...

    Way too much snow in Chicago today. I'm cold.

  13. I am a lurker. I'm pretty sure I haven't commented here before, but I've had you in my reader for... well, about a year, I guess. I was on a break at work and poking around blogger to see who else might like to read books that I like to read. I can't remember which one it was that lead me to your profile, but I've been hooked. I am in awe of your reading and reviewing prowess, and you have inspired me to start a reading blog of my own, in addition to my gardening blog.

    As for snow -- well, I'm Canadian, but I would never mock someone else's snow. A little bit is better than none!

    And you just reminded me -- I desperately want to read some version of Arabian Nights. I'm halfway through Grimm's fairy-tales, but once I'm done I'll have to see if I can find a good edition of Arabian Nights somewhere.

  14. I have the same questions, too, Nymeth... I often wonder... :)

  15. Okay, as a Canadian, I could not imagine not getting snow... I see it for months out of the year! And, I am really rather sick of it, but at the same time... I could not imagine not getting snow! Thankfully my driveway is plowed, but my bf doesn't have that luxury. He did something to his back and he had to call me the other night and ask me to come help because he just couldn't finish! So, we were playing in the snow at like midnight! Fun stuff! We were supposed to get 15 cms last night, and I am sooo glad we didn't! The thought of shoveling was not exciting me in the least!

    And, well, you know who I am, so I am not a lurker! When the library gets East for me, do you want to buddy review it? Or have you started it already? (I have the worst time remembering to check comments, so if you answer, can you email me too so I know! I don't want you to think I am rude because I ask a question and then ignore the answer!)

  16. I left most of my childhood books in Europe and others along my many travels, I do not even want to think how many. It wasn't always possible to carry all of them along so I had to chose the ones I liked the best.Always a difficult decision.

  17. I love your snow pics. I know for you that's a huge deal. I wish I knew how that felt right about now. It snowed here all day. I'm going to take a pic tomorrow of my snow banks in the back yard. lol.

  18. We don't get snow here either. It VERY occasionally falls in some metro areas but for the most part not. I always used to get excited when it snowed when I lived in the UK.

    I am very glad that I don't have to dig out drive ways or things like that though!

  19. I don't often leave comments (I don't know if I ever have) but I love your reviews. It's strange to have a blogger whose updates I look forward to as much as yours and don't often comment on, but I think it's because we read different books.

    I would love to have snow!

  20. Love the snow pictures! We haven't had any so far :(

    I lurk in quite a few places. Maybe I'll actually go say hello soon lol!

  21. Ummmm....Nymeth? I think that second set of bookshelves is about to collapse on itself :p Just thought I'd let you know. Your bookshelves remind me so much of mine! I decorate mine too with little figures and even some stuffed animals. I also have an assortment of poppets on my bookshelf along with my entire buddha collection on top! Love your bookshelves! :)

    I really want to read the two Eugenides books!!! Even though I didn't read them then, I feel like they'd still remind me of being 20 again too...I think that's around the time I first saw Virgin Suicides the movie.

    And I'm so glad to see that you got some snow too!! And I certainly won't make fun of you for it because it looks like the snow that we got here in New Orleans a few weeks ago, lol. And I was so excited about it! I love the little doggie prints :)

    I think I may encourage my lurkers to delurk as well! lol.

  22. I normally find snow to be an exciting event but not like the mess we had in Seattle the week before Christmas! Glad you got some and had fun taking pictures. I must say that I think I am a lurker here--I have been involved in a couple of the same challenges as you, but probably haven't commented much. You have a lovely blog and I enjoy my visits here.
    Happy Thursday-

  23. I've been meaning to do that meme for months now. And I always feel jealous when other people post their photos of snow as well. We don't get much where we live either!

    And also hi, I probably don't comment as often as I should! I blog about books but I don't write very many (if any!) reviews but do read a fair few other book blogs. I write about my kids and my life, my childhood.

  24. Hello Nymeth, big lurker here! (The de-lurking week idea is a good one, I'll have to go around and post comments on many blogs today...)
    I may have first discovered your blog through the Secret Santa exchange, and I ended up here every now and then... but only a few days ago did I subscribe to your blog in my reader, actually after discovering here that you are Portuguese. I am moving to Portugal in a couple of weeks, so I immediately started lurking here on a regular basis! :) (even though, as far as I understand, you are not living in Portugal at the moment).
    Happy reading and enjoy the snow!

  25. How fun that you got some snow! Love the little paw prints! :)

  26. I'm not laughing either! While the rest of the country was covered in snow, we got nothing down here in Devon. :-(

    Lovely book idea at that airport. I came across a local pub that did that recently. Their charity was for our local hospital. I think it's a brilliant idea.

  27. the latest book you aquired: hahaha...

    love it! so true, so true! no need to say anything more! hahahaha

  28. Oh, I would never laugh at snow! How fun! I love the tracks photo.

  29. nice bookshelves nymeth, is that sonic? cute :) I'm reading Stardust now.
    Glad to hear you like the snowfall.

    I tend to lurk a few blogs, only if I'm shy.

  30. Booktrash: Thank you again for the award :D And isn't it? I'd love to see that more often.

    Ramya: It took me a long time to do it too :P Don't feel pressured or anything!

    Softdrink: Semi-lurkers? :P I only recently de-lurked at yours too, so we're in the same boat. I'm actually quite shy about commenting at blogs for the first time. A part of my brain keeps going what-if-this-person-is-thinking-oh-no-she's-always-commenting-on-my-friend's-blogs-and-never-shuts-up-and-now-she's-coming-here-to-pester-me-too. I try to get it to shut up, though :P

    Loren Eaton: "oh-my-word-he-could-read-the-phonebook-and-I'd-listen" --> lol! Perfectly put.

    Memory: I do love snow on green. I've never had enough snow to see it turn into mud, but I can imagine how it's not a pretty sight.

    Iliana: Definitely a good idea. I wish more places did that!

    Debi: I wish I could! I'd be totally happy with someone else translating it too. Maybe if I ever start by own small publisher like I often dream about I'll contact the author :P And it really is pure genius!

    Chelsea: I'm so glad you said hi! I've been really enjoying your blog :) And why intimidated? I promise my bookshelves are nice :P

    Rebecca: Hi! Same here...I don 't always comment, but I always enjoy reading what you have to say. I wish you could send some of the extra snow my way!

    Kiirstin: Thank you so much for introducing yourself! I can't tell you how happy it makes me that I inspired you to start your own book blog - which I'm clicking over to as soon as I finish this. As for the Arabian Nights, there's an edition with an introduction by Jack Zipes that I have my eye on.

    Alice: You should do your own de-lurk post!

    Kailana: You're snow-spoiled, that's what :P The shovelling really doesn't sound any fun, though. That I can do without. And I shall e-mail you in a minute!

    Madeleine: It really is difficult :(

  31. Dar: I really can see how nothing but snow would get tiresome. I still look forward to your pictures, though :P

    Marg: I'm glad of that too!

    Amy: Hi! I have to confess I lurk at your blog too :P I had no idea you read mine, though! We do have very different taste in books, but I also always enjoy reading what you have to say. Thanks for saying hi :)

    Ladytink: Fingers crossed you get some snow too!

    Chris: lol! You know, my boyfriend saw that picture and was like "you do of course realize all those books are going to fall on your head one of these days." But I SWEAR it's the weird picture angle. The shelves don't actually look nearly as bent as that. But to be on the save side I think I'll add a support thingie in the middle when I move :P And yes, read the Eugenides books. OR ELSE.

    Kim: You know, I added your blog to my reader just a few days ago! I had visited it before but I kept forgetting to add it. No more, though!

    Michelle: I've been a lurker at your blog too, but I promise to comment more in the future. I enjoy your posts, even if they aren't always about books :)

    Francesca: I do live in Portugal, actually! Is it Lisbon you're moving to? If you need any help or any info, or just some tips about cool places to visit, please let me know! I'd be glad to help. Also, feel free to e-mail me if you come to the North and want someone to show you around :P

    tanabata: The dogs were all very curious, but only one of the cats venture outside. Not for long, though :P

    Cath: Aww, sorry you got no snow! And it really is a brilliant idea.

    Deslily: lol...no need to say more indeed :P

    Robin, I'm glad you like it :D

    Naida: Yep, it's Sonic...there's a smaller Yoshi in there too :P I'm actually a Nintendo girl at heart, but I saw that Sonic in a bargain basket once and couldn't resist it.

  32. I love that idea in the airport, it's a bit like bookcrossing..which reminds me I should do some,I haven't released a book in the wild in aaages.

    We didn't get any snow either,it would have been nice to even have that little much:P

    and one last thing,that summer of yours reading books in the shade and listening to belle and sebastien sounds fabolous!

  33. Thanks for playing ;)

    I always get excited when we have snow here too because though it doesn't last very long, it aways seems to catch us unawares! My cat struggles though, bless the little old man!

  34. As for the Arabian Nights, there's an edition with an introduction by Jack Zipes that I have my eye on.

    Ooooooooh. The Grimm translation I have is his (actually, I read about him here for the first time, too). I will have to look for that edition myself. I really like his take on the Grimms and their tales, and I've enjoyed every essay by him I've read. I would love to see what he has to say about Arabian Nights.

    Re: my book blog... it's pretty sparse yet! I'm just getting started. I've had such a hard time reading for pleasure while I've been in school. It's such a relief to be done, and I want to share my excitement about books I read with the world...

  35. no lurker here! lol I love your snow. I remember being excited as a child whenever it snowed. Actually, I do like snowfall. I hate the cold. And right now we are so cold that we can't be outside for very long.
    I really liked your answers to Eva's meme. And especially your bookshelves, as Chris said, I noticed the one that was falling! That made me laugh because my shelves are so stacked that no one can bump into them.....plus I have little figurines and things too on them :-)
    Have you ever thought of translating those books you loved as a child into English? That sounds really interesting.

  36. Love your bookshelves, so organized unlike mine :)

    I don't lurke, by the way, not on your blog at least :)

  37. I don't often post on your blog but do have you in my google reader so follow your blog. I like this de-lurking idea!

    Love your bookshelves...I have only one bookcase and it's jam packed. I definitely need more.

    We have lots of snow here in the midwest and are currently under a foot or more of snow with below zero temps and wind chill. I am tiring of it but I can see it is magical to those who don't get it. It's definitely much nicer to look at the photos than be out in the bitter cold that is almost painful to the skin!

  38. I enjoyed reminiscing with you about what you've read over the years--those that remind of specific times in your life and those that came to you in unique ways.

    I love the snow photos! Snow doesn't often come my way, much less stick to the ground even a little so I can appreciate the rarity of it.

  39. I love your shelf pictures and how you've lots of little figures scattered amongst the books! All my shelves are like that too :)

    And how cool to know you like Belle and Sebastian - I had a few CDs and listened to Feeling Sinister constantly but lost them in a move a few years back, I really need to find some copies again :)

  40. Valentina: It was indeed a good summer, though it still surprises me that I could focus on reading with my mind racing so much all the time. It was the summer when I stopped being a teenager, emotionally speaking. Better late than never :P

    Mariel: My cats were not amused either. They hate the cold!

    Kiirstin: I so want Zipes' translation of the Grimms! Some day, sme day. And yes, his essays are absolutely fantastic! He's so accessible and so insightful. I look forward to reading all about the books that excite you!

    Susan: I'd love to translate them, but I doubt the author would be interested in just working with a random fan :P I'm not too fond of very low temperatures either, but I do love seeing everything white.

    violetcrush: These are newish, that's why they're still organized :P

    Bonnie: Thanks for saying hi! I've read about how cold it's been in the Midwest lately...it sounds horrible. I hope the temperature goes up soon!

    Literary Feline: The last time it snowed here it didn't stick to the ground either. I was so excited it did this time!

    Joanna: Now I want to see pictures of your shelves :P If you're Feeling Sinister is my favourite of their albums. It has Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying and there are no words for how much I love that song!

  41. I've got plenty of snow. Want some of mine? I know it is exciting when its not an everyday thing, but boy does it get old to drive when it is snowing. I live in MN, and on top of the snow, its been -30 the past few days.

    Oh, and thanks for the tag!

  42. That's a really cool airport! I wonder if there are such 'book bins' at airports in my country. Guess I'll just have to visit them and check them out! It's one way of finding books not sold here.

    I know of a 5-star hotel here that has a bookshelf where visitors can leave their books there.

  43. I lurker, sometimes I'm a week behind, but I still lurk!


Thank you so much for taking the time to comment - interaction is one of my favourite things about blogging and a huge part of what keeps me going.