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Sunday, February 25, 2018

NYT By the Book Quiz


Hello, dear friends.  A while ago my friend Jeanie of The Marmelade Gypsy wrote a post answering the questions to The New York Times By The Book quizEvery Sunday, questions similar to these are posed to a chosen author.  Jeanie encouraged other bloggers to play along, so here I am.

What books are on your nightstand?



I have a virtual nightstand because I read some books on my kindle and listen to some on audible.  The three books above are on my list for next read/listen.

What are you reading right now?

I was listening to Anatomy of a Scandal.  I finally had to give up on this one.  This book is a perfect example of the writer trying too hard to impress her reader with flowery words and losing sight of an intriguing storyline.

I am almost finished with this page-turner.  I have read all of Burke's books and enjoyed every one.  The story moves quickly while careening around the twists and turns.   So far, so good.

This thriller keeps you guessing all the way through.  I'm almost finished with this one, too.  I can't give a full review yet because some books have been ruined by the ending for me.

What is the last great book you read?

I loved both of these books.

What do you read for Solace?

I enjoy sweet stories about fictional characters that I would like to meet in person.

For escape?

These two were my favorites of 2017.

For sheer pleasure?

I have read every book that Pat Conroy has written.
Beach Music is still one of my favorite books of all time.

I look forward to reading it again this Summer. 


And of course, I love all of Kristy Woodson Harvey's books.

What are your favorite books on a favorite subject?

I love to read books about the Kennedy family.

I enjoyed both of these books because the authors were kind but honest about their subject, Jackie Kennedy.  I don't like when an author trashes their subject.

What are your favorite genres and which don't you particularly like?

I think that you figured out by now that I am a nut for a good thriller.

bookscrolling.com ok

I'm not a fan of Scifi or Fantasy books.

What book did you think was overrated or just didn't like?


There was so much hype on this one.  I couldn't wait to read it.  I put it down halfway because I couldn't take any more self-obsessed rants by the author.

I feel like I will be considered politically incorrect for not liking this one.  One reviewer after another raved about this book written by a doctor dying of cancer.  I  expected to find some deep thoughts regarding the meaning of life.  But I didn't.  I was bored to tears.

How do you like to read?  
Paper or electronic?  Morning or night? Where do you like to read?

I read in my sunroom in the early evening with a glass of wine in hand where there is plenty of light and lots of snuggles with my two hooligans, Chowdah and Chili.  You will find me on my Kindle where I can control the size of the lettering because my eyes and every other part of me are not as good as they used to be.

The Mister says that it looks like I am reading a children's book. 

What's the best book you ever received as a gift?

I love beautiful coffee table books.  My friend, Anne gave me this book, and I love to look through it on these cold, raw, rainy days.  
It's the gift that keeps on giving.

What kind of reader were you as a child?

Benjamin Miller

Both my Grandmother and Mother were voracious readers. 
I began to really enjoy reading when I was a teen.

No classics for moi.  
These were my favorites.
There's no accounting for taste.

Which childhood books and authors stick with you the most?

This book of fairy tales and poems was passed down from my Grandmother.  She read it to my Mother as a little girl, and my Mother read it to Sista and me. There were two entries that were my favorites:  The Teeny Tiny Woman and the poem, There was a girl who had a curl right in the middle of her forehead.

You're organizing a literary dinner party.  
Which three writers, dead or alive, do you invite?

Norah Ephron

Erma Bombeck

Kelly Corrigan

Who would you like to write your life story? 

Erma, of course.

And I would like Charlize to play me in the movie.

And my first husband to play my second husband.

Thanks, Jeanie this was great fun.

I'd love to hear about your favorite and not-so-favorite books. 

Until next time...

Linking up with:
Preppy Empty Nester
Preppy Empty Nester

Thanks for stopping by my blog. Feel free to contact me through comments and email. I love to hear from my readers!


  1. I'm with you on Pat Conroy, so sad that he is gone. And now I don't feel so bad about giving my mother-in-law 'Eat, Pray, Love' when I was only half-way through it. I knew she never returns anything she borrows and for once I was happy about that as I handed it to her! Erma was a dear. She use to do a radio snippet long ago, and I loved hearing her. I can't see or hear the words septic tank that I don't think of her or want to check if the grass is greener there. She was the first person who made us feel OK about not feeling joy at 3 a.m. when the kid needed cough syrup or their bed needed changing. Maybe the Helicopter Mom and Dads need someone like Erma to calm them down a bit?

  2. Currently on my nightstand: 1.) Meryl Gordon’s bio on Bunny Mellon- very interesting 2.) “The Nightingale” by Kristin Hannah- enjoying it so far, solid writing 3.) Rereading “A Year by The Sea” by Joan Anderson, short read on making changes in your life by stepping out of a comfortable existence.

    As a child I devoured biographies, Davey Crockett, Daniel Boone, Clara Barton, Florence Nightingale, fiction, not so much. I still love non-fiction and it’s usually my first choice but I have a rather long list of fiction recommended by you that I intend to read. Thank you for all your hard work!

    We recently moved to a new town and I’d love to start a book club. I’ve read enough articles on how to start one and how to run one but not where to find fellow clubbers. I went to the library for some input and was told there is a book club in town but I’d rather start a new club………any tips, suggestions would be much appreciated. How is your book club run and where did you find members?

    1. Hi! Congrats on your move! I started my book club in Texas because I had just finished "My Sister's Keeper" and I had no one to talk to about it. I then asked all my neighbors and tennis buddies to join. We got a good group going and some months the group was bigger than others. I suggest that you ask your neighbors and ask them if they know anyone. I met so many nice people through the book club here. Good luck and keep me posted.

    2. Funny you should mention A year by the Sea..I am from NE although a FL snowbird too. I am a docent at the local library and I love to read both electronic and The old way! I recently watched A year by the Sea on Netflix. Lots of scenery from Welfleet that I recognized. Made me feel I am missing my roots.

  3. What a great post, Katie. I jotted down three books that I will seek out now. I just picked up The First Mrs. Parrish on Friday so I am looking forward to reading that. Love(d) Pat Conroy-a loss to the world of story-telling at its finest.

    Hope you have a blessed, wonderful Sunday. xo Diana

  4. love the book posts! The Glass Castle was the book all my friends loved but it left me skeptical. Too many inconsistencies. ////still waiting to find a really good book this year.

  5. Very fun Katie, love hearing your yays and nays, I have put several on my wish list, thank you! I am a kindle reader, love the convenience and using the kindle app on my phone to read while I'm waiting somewhere. A glass of wine and a good book is the way to go!

  6. I am very jealous of all the reading you are able to accomplish. During the school year, it takes me for ever to finish a book. I often refer back to your book posts to determine my next read, so thanks for keeping me literate.

  7. I always like the books you recommend as I love thrillers too! You are helping my Amazon wish list to grow. I'm glad I wasen't the only one to dislike "Eat Pray Love". I just couldn't get into it and thought the author was a bit of a flake.

  8. I read Jeanie’s post and so enjoyed seeing what she was reading. I also enjoyed your list! I have a stack of books that I am reading. I always prefer holding a book rather than using my IPad. I also enjoyed Pat Conroy’s books. He wrote the foreword to my favorite chef’s cookbook, Frank Stitt. Erma was always so entertaining. I made a list from your recommendations. Thank you, Katie!

  9. I could barely keep up--your faves are mine. I thought no one else had ever read The Other Side of Midnight. I read it when I was 17 and it rocked me with it's powerful story. Eat, Pray Love...I ate it up. Some did, some didn't. Her second book failed, I hear. I'm now devouring The Woman in the Window. Check out the Amazon review. I can't put it down.


    **I cried when Nora Ephron died. My hubby gave me her autobiography a few years ago-cried through that, too.

  10. I enjoyed getting to know you better through the books and authors you read and love! My husband loves thrillers, but used to read and has gotten back into scifi lately. I think I'll pass along some of your latest faves so he might switch tracks again. I'm getting tired of hearing about all the apocalyptic scenarios of the world to come. Have a great week!

  11. Katie, I always love your book commentaries! The NYTimes had a review of the Bouvier girls book yesterday and called it "deliciously readable" so I'm saving it for beach time this summer! My kids loved the Teeny Tiny Woman and could listen to it over and over (remember those days when they thought listening to you was the best thing ever?), waiting excitedly for the last two words. And as far as Eat, etc. goes, you and I, with a list of stereotypes and a case of wine, could have written it. Why didn't we?? Phony, whining, I wanted to slap her. Erma's insights were so much more authentic. The Bunny Mellon book is next on my list to read. Linda

  12. You're so good to me! Thanks for including me in that!! Do you know I've never read Valley of the Dolls? I just ordered it--and NOT because I loved the 50th anniversary cover... ;) And Pat Conroy is the master, always. I just wrote a column about standing in his personal library in his house all alone right after he died. It was church, basically. I love the poem about the little girl with the curl. Everyone down here says "far-id" not "fore-head" and I'm pretty sure it's because of that poem... I want Blake Lively to play me. I'm going to stay at the NY Palace next week, and I'm going to pretend I'm Serena van Der Woodsen from Gossip Girl--I mean, we basically have the same name. Happy Monday, friend! xoxox Kristy

  13. Taking notes and adding a few to my summer wish list beach read. Love thrillers and mysteries. I enjoy books about the Kennedy family too. Glad to know I wasn't the only one who couldn't read Eat Pray Love thinking it had to be better than the movie I couldn't watch! I should have know better. Love my books, the smell and feel. I read better during the day but as I told Jeanie, I love falling asleep with a book. Happy week Katie...

  14. What a fun post for us book nerds! I may not do this exact set of questions, but you have given me an idea for a post. P.S. I didn't like When Breath Becomes Air either.

  15. Good picks! My Dad named his boat Beach Music after the book!

  16. I'm leaving for a week on the beach in Florida on Saturday and you gave me some great books to bring with me!!!! I primarily read true crime or non-fiction (just finished Brene Brown's newest book) and also love to read about the Kennedy's. I totally agree about Eat, Pray, Love...I didn't finish it and I didn't see the movie either. Hope you are seeing signs of spring up there! xo

  17. Thank you for the book recommendations. When I get into a book I love, I will read right through to the end. I still love all the classics, Elizabeth Gaskill, the Bronte sisters, Jane Austin, Dickens. I go back to these books and read them through again, every decade or so.

  18. Katie, you are one more well ready woman for sure!

  19. Ok, goosebumps, yet again, Sis. Your revelation about Eat Pray Love was exactly how I felt. Up until now, everyone else has been praising it to the skies. But, try as I might, I couldn't get past the self-obsessed rants ...

  20. I am SO glad you did this, Katie! First of all, you write more fun than anyone and I loved your assessment of the books. "What She Knew" is in my pile, too. And you nailed "Eat, Pray, Love" to a tee. (Tea?) Your teen reading is much the same as mine. In fact, my mother HID Valley of the Dolls (and of course I found it, read it and put it back.) And when she passed Other Side of Midnight onto me she did it with some trepidation. I'd like to read that one again! Thanks for joining in!

  21. I love reading and have since I was a child. I would hide under the covers at night and read with a flashlight. I have been known to stay up all night to finish a good book. I however am not like you in the respect that I do not like thrillers or books like that. I like historical novels, biographies, chic lit and books like A Man named Ove.

    Thanks for sharing your list I have written a few I did not know about.

  22. I’m with you on Eat Pray Love, no thanks. I did read finish it, but found it tiresome. My mother was also a voracious reader and it rubbed off on me. She was fascinated by the Royal Family and read everything written about them. I’m disappointed to find few books written about the younger members of the family - so different than in Diana & Fergie’s day where there always seemed to be a new title hot off the presses - and I shamefully devoured them all. I’m embarrassed to admit I didn’t like The Last Mrs Parrish. I felt it tried too hard to be Gone Girl. and, I didn’t enjoy The Woman in the Window either. Yikes, maybe there’s something wrong with me. Anne Perry writes a wonderful crime series - The Thomas Pitt mysteries - not as popular as the Monk series but I think better! And, I never tire or rereading anything by Jane Austen or Edith Wharton. Love reading about the Grandees back in the day. Speaking of Grandees, I miss Dominick Dunne - fiction and non. Love a good coffee table decor book and ‘reading’ cookbooks - which rarely translates into actual cooking. My how I do run on . . .

  23. I loved the book a man name ove. In my mind he was the character from UP, the voice of Ed Asner.
    What She Knew I also read but I had to read the summary to remind me of the premise. Let me know what you think! I need a good thriller. Need to go back and reread your list. thanks katie! laura

  24. I love Nora Ephron, my mom introduced me to Erma Bombeck, I grew up on Judy Blume books, I love Jen Lancaster books (follow her on Instagram she is hysterical). I know I am missing some favorites. I loved your comments about Eat, Pray, Love. I never read the book because the luxury of just taking off to find one's self just seemed self absorbed. My dad taught me early on, "Laura always know your audience." Don't lament "first world problems" to people who are on their feet all day.
    Great list! laura

  25. I so enjoyed reading this post. We like many of the same books so I'll make a list of those I haven't read and look for them. I check ebooks out from my library and that is great for me! Happy reading!


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