Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Reading meme

Got this from Blog of the Beast.

I know I like Robert E. Howard but I'm still surprised how often he comes up in my answers. I do read more than REH, really I do.

1) What author do you own the most books by? Glen Cook. It could be Robert E. Howard if you count various collections but between The Black Company, The Dread Empire and the Garret P.I. series, I have to think I have more Cook. David Drake count is up there, too.

2) What book do you own the most copies of? I don’t really keep multiple copies of anything. Robert E. Howard takes this by default – I have some duplicate collections between the Baen series and the Del Rey series though the contents aren’t an exact match.

3) Did it bother you that both these questions ended with a preposition? No.

4) What fictional character are you secretly in love with? None that I am aware of. A few I might lust for (Red Sonja.)

5) What book have you read the most times in your life? I’ve read quite a few twice but I don’t think I’ve read any book more than that. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller, God Knows by Joseph Heller, It by Stephen King - I recall reading twice. Lately, I’ve been answering this question a lot (and “favorites”) and it makes me want to do a bunch of re-reading – but my “to-be-read” pile is already too large.

6) What was your favorite book when you were 10 years old? I don’t recall.

7) What is the worst book you've read in the past year? The Dark Knight Strikes Again by Frank Miller. Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns was a classic. …Strikes Again was utterly nasty, vindictive, unbelievable crap. Just my opinion.

8) What is the best book you've read in the past year? Tie. Sharpe’s Fury and Sharpe’s Escape by Bernard Cornwell. I’d never read any Sharpe before. Now I want to read the rest of the series.

9) If you could force everyone to read one book, what would it be? The Conquering Sword of Conan by Robert E. Howard. I want people to disassociate “Ahnuld” from the character and see how rich, wonderful and original Howard’s character and writing really are. Personally, of the Conan stories, I like ones found in this collection the most.

10) Who deserves the win for the next Nobel Prize for literature? No idea.

11) What book would you most like to see made into a movie? I am always hesitant about such things. On the one hand, there are many stories I’d like to see visually, but I am always afraid Hollywood will miss the interpretation and do it wrong.

12) What book would you least like to see made into a movie? See above.

13) Describe your weirdest dream involving a writer, book, or literary character. None that I recall.

14) What is the most lowbrow book you've read as an adult? I don’t think I have.

15) What is the most difficult book you've ever read? Not really sure. Difficult because I didn’t like it but made myself finish it or difficult just getting the words into my head and understood? Either way I’m not sure I have an answer.

16) What is the most obscure Shakespeare play you've ever seen? The only Shakespeare play I’ve seen live was MacBeth when I was in college.

17) Do you prefer the French or the Russians? The French. I respect the Russians but we’ve been allies with France for a very long time.

18) Roth or Updike? N/A. (haven’t read ‘em)

19) David Sedaris or Dave Eggers? N/A. (haven’t read ‘em)

20) Shakespeare, Milton, or Chaucer? Milton.

21) Austin or Elliot? N/A. (haven’t read ‘em)

22) What is the biggest, most embarrassing gap in your reading? I’ve read a lot of classics, but I’ve missed a lot, too - particularly from the 20th century.

23) What is your favorite novel? At this point, I’d have to say The Black Company by Glen Cook.

24) Favorite play? I don't have one.

25) Favorite poem? “The Return of Sir Richard Grenville” by Robert E. Howard

26) Favorite essay? N/A

27) Favorite short story? “Worms of the Earth” by Robert E. Howard.

28) Favorite work of non-fiction? I haven’t read enough non-fiction. I read history for research but none really jump out at me. I did enjoy Band of Brothers. There are some current titles that intrigue me, but I never seem to read a non-fiction when it’s current.

29) Favorite writers? Glen Cook, Robert E. Howard, Karl E. Wagner, David Drake, Ian Fleming, Joseph Heller, Dan Abnett and plenty of runners up.

30) Who is the most overrated writer alive today? I don’t know.

31) What is your desert island book? If you’ve seen the bookcases in my house then you know this is impossible for me to answer. Maybe, just maybe, Eons of the Night by Robert E. Howard because of the variety, but it lacks any Conan, Kull, Kane, Bran Mak Morn or Cormac Mac Art stories so I don’t know if it would work for me. Maybe one of the Del-Rey "Best of" Howard collections for variety including some of the classic heroes he created.

32) What are you reading now? Lord of the Silent Kingdom by Glen Cook and a Warhammer 40,000 trade paperback comic, Exterminatus.