Top Ten Tuesday: Top 10 Favourite Books I Read In School

Top Ten Tuesday is the brainchild of The Broke & the Bookish. Every Tuesday, we compile a list of our literary Top 10, and then add it to the blog hop.

This week is all about our Top 10 Favourite Books We Read In School.

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#WeekendCoffeeShare: If We Were Having Coffee… On August 28

Hello my lovely booklovers,

how are you? Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, a blog hop by the lovely Diana over at Part Time Monster. Every weekend we get together for virtual coffees and a little casual chat. How has this past week been for you?

If we were having coffee today, we’d either sit outside in the shade of the tree, or inside with the windows closed and the air con on. Your choice. It’s around 34°C today and quite humid – I had to hold my head under cold water around noon to cool down and it didn’t do much. You’re welcome to have coffee or tea, though I can also offer you cold water and fruit juice.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you about the Actor Book Tag. I’ve just completed mine, comparing attributes of my favourite actors / TV roles with favourite characters from books. I only noticed at the end that I didn’t pick a character from a single movie – they’re all from TV shows. And some shows and books show up more than once. I guess that says a lot about the sort of shows I watch, characters I like and books I read. I didn’t tag anyone, but if you want to do it, feel free! I’d love to see your choices!

If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you that my thesis is coming along, though at a slower pace than I’d like. It took me ages to complete the case study I was working on this week. But now I’m sort of in the swing of things, finally, so I’m hoping the rest will be easier to do now that I found a format that works for me.

If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you that I got some amazing news this week! My bestie sent me a plane ticket out of the blue so I can come and visit her in the UK in October and finally meet her daughter! And then, later that same day, another very good friend (my best friend from university) asked me to be her Maid of Honour! She’d initially asked me to be her bridesmaid, but then texted me asking whether I’d mind not being bridesmaid after all. And yes, that hurt a little at first, but I figured it’s her wedding, so who am I to complain? That’s when she promoted me 😀 It’s quite hard to help plan a wedding and put together a proper hen do from a different country though, so I hope I’ll do alright by her!

I’m afraid I haven’t done much else this week. I’ve done a lot of studying outdoors to soak up the sun. How about you?

Sorry, this Weekend Coffee Share is so short. The other Weekend Coffee Sharers want to see you as well, I’m sure.

Thank you for having coffee with me!

The Actor Book Tag

I found this book tag over on BookComa and thought it was fun! I wasn’t really tagged by anyone, so I won’t be tagging anyone either, but if you’d like to do this fun little tag feel free!

While doing this I realised that all my actor choices are from TV shows rather than movies and some are even from the same shows.

RULES:

  • Thank the person who tagged you
  • Chose your own 8 actors (or you can use the ones I gave you) and create descriptions and compare them to book characters like I did
  • Put in photos of them from the movie roll
  • Answer what book character fits the same description as the movie character
  • List 8 people to tag

1.) A CHARACTER WHO MAKES YOU FANGIRL:
Actor / Role: 
David Tennant / The 10th Doctor in Doctor Who
Book: Bilbo Baggins in The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Two characters I definitely fangirl about are the 10th Doctor and Bilbo Baggins. I love the quirkiness of the Doctor, how cheeky he can be. Bilbo is an amazing character because he is ultimately selfless – not only did he take in Frodo and raised him as his own, he helped the Dwarves because he wanted them to have a home. Both characters are are clever and think on their feet.

2.) A CHARACTER WHO CAN’T HELP BEING BRILLIANT (EVEN IF THEY ACT STUPID):
Actor / Role: 
Simon Baker / Patrick Jane in The Mentalist
Book: Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Both Patrick and Sherlock seem to have a problem keeping their tongues in check sometimes. Elaborate schemes are also their thing. Let’s not forget that Sherlock Holmes once spent two hours on an elaborate costume to disguise himself as an old flower lady just for Lestrade to roll up and immediately go “Do I look like I want flowers, Holmes?” There’s also a lot of crime-solving while lying on a couch and a LOT of tea involved in both cases.

3.) A CHARACTER WHO CAN TAKE CARE OF HERSELF:
Actor / Role: 
Catherine Tate / Donna Noble in Doctor Who
Book: 
Jed Kelly in The Ghost by the Billabong by Jackie French

I seriously love Donna Noble. I think she was the best companion. She was smart, sassy, stood up for herself and others. But she’d been put down so many times and learned to survive. Jed has had some bad luck. She’s homeless and surviving on her luck and thinking on her feet.

4.) A BADASS FEMALE CHARACTER:
Actor / Role: 
Gillian Anderson / Dana Scully in The X-Files    
Book: 
Hermione Granger in Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

If I grew up with one badass female character on TV it has to be Special Agent Dana Scully. Loved her no-nonsense approach to everything and keeping up with Mulder’s antics. As she’d say “Sure. Fine. Whatever.” Hermione is so much more badass than many give her credit for. She’s brave and smart, and let’s face it, Harry, Ron and half the school would have been dead by the end of the first book without her. Though she really came into her own when they were forced to leave Hogwarts behind.

5.) A CHARACTER FORCED TO HIDE WHO THEY REALLY ARE:
Actor / Role: 
Alex Kingston / River Song in Doctor Who
Book: 
Nobody Owens in The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

I guess you learn to avoid Spoilers when you’re River Song. How hard must it have been for her to keep quiet about who she really is and how she fits into everybody else’s timelines. And I’ve just got a little bit a lot of hair envy! Nobody Owens had to hide his entire life and couldn’t tell anyone the truth about who he was, where he lived and who raised him.

6.) A CHARACTER WITH A TRAGIC AND MYSTERIOUS BACKSTORY:
Actor / Role: 
David Duchovny / Fox Mulder in The X-Files
Book: Henry DeTamble in The Time-Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Let’s face it: the one thing we know about Fox Mulder with absolute certainty is that he wants to believe. And that something happened to his sister when he was a child. Henry DeTamble is all-round mysterious. How can he time-travel? I mean, how can his wife have grown up with him if he has never met her before?

7.) A CHARACTER STEADFAST TO THEIR VALUES AND FRIENDS:
Actor / Role: 
Rupert Graves / DI Greg Lestrade in Sherlock
Book: 
Aristotle Mendoza in Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

DI Greg Lestrade is one of my favourite characters. He looks after those he considers friends and family, making sure they are alright. He puts up with Sherlock because he knows he’ll get results. There’s a reason fans call him Papa Lestrade. Ari stands behind Dante, even if he’s not sure about his own feelings. But that friendship is more important than his own discomfort.

8.) A CHARACTER LITERALLY MADE OF SASS:
Actor / Role: 
Martin Freeman / Dr John Watson in Sherlock
Book: 
Dr John Watson in Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

If there is such a thing as perfect casting, then this is pretty much it! Martin “I-can-say-that-with-one-look” Freeman as Dr John Watson has just the right amount of sass and snark needed to counter Sherlock Holmes. The sass is definitely strong with this one!

 

If you like to join in on the fun, then TAG, YOU’RE IT!! Let me know down in the comments if you do it, so I can check out all of your answers!😀

#WeekendCoffeeShare: If We Were Having Coffee… On August 21

Hello my lovely booklovers,

how are you? Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, a blog hop by the lovely Diana over at Part Time Monster. Every weekend we get together for virtual coffees and a little casual chat. How has this past week been for you?

If we were having coffee today, we’d meet at the Naturfreundehaus Solingen-Theegarten, the local meeting house of the Friends of Nature in my district (Solingen-Theegarten). I’ve been a member there for the past 20-odd years, and members do run a volunteer weekend service there, offering coffee and cake to hikers and everyone else who comes by.

Today, it’s my best friend’s turn to run the shop and he asked whether I’d like to keep him company. So I said yes. It gets me out of the house, he’s great company and let me tell you, he knows his way around a kitchen. His cakes are amazing! No word of a lie!

I’d hoped we could sit outside in my favourite spot under the trees out front, looking towards the forest and fields, but alas it’s raining today.

My favourite spot at Naturfreundehaus Solingen-Theegarten ©Literati Girl

My favourite spot at Naturfreundehaus Solingen-Theegarten ©Literati Girl

If we were having coffee today, we’d enjoy Nils’ apricot cake with copious amounts of coffee. I’d probably sit there working on my M.A. thesis. I decided to take my printed-out journal articles with me and some paper, to hand-write one of my case studies. I hoped that the lack of laptop and internet would get me to work without distractions. And it did. Sort of. I managed about 1.500 words total today, despite talking to Nils and his fiancée, his family (who came by on a surprise visit) and the Naturfreunde Music Group, who nobody knew had a practice there today. Especially the singing was distracting, but I still covered a lot of ground, so I just have to type everything up now that I’m home.

Back to basics: handwriting part of my M.A. thesis today ©Literati Girl

Back to basics: handwriting part of my M.A. thesis today ©Literati Girl

If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you that I met up with my godfather this week after not seeing him in 8 years. He’s from my hometown but now lives in Reno, Nevada. The last time we saw each other, we spent a few days in London together in 2008, after that I was either in Britain or on holiday every time he came to visit. And last time I met his son Phillip, Phillip was 13 and more than a head shorter than me. So now, eight years later, he’s about 2 heads taller than me and an adult. While our parents spoke to each other, we had a lovely talk. I’d like to think he was glad that there was someone at that table who was fluent in English to talk to him. We talked for four hours straight, found out we have a lot more in common now than we would have thought when we were 13 / 21, and he taught me a lot about coffee as he’s training to be a barista and hoping to open his own coffee shop one day. We’ll actually meet up again next week, as my godfather is getting all his friends together again for a meal before they head back to the States. I’m really looking forward to talking to Phil again. We’ve got the same taste in coffee, books and films/TV, so we actually have a lot to talk about. I just told him that if he ever visited my home, I’d offer him tea, rather than coffee. Mainly because I don’t think my coffee can compete with that of a barista trained in latte art. He just laughed.

Ah well. Anyway, if we were having coffee today, that’d be it from me for now. I’ve got to get back to my thesis transcript. I’m sure the other Weekend Coffee Sharers would love to see you as well.

Thank you for having coffee with me. Same time, next week?

 

#WeekendCoffeeShare: If We Were Having Coffee… On August 14

Hello my lovely booklovers,

how are you? Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, a blog hop by the lovely Diana over at Part Time Monster. Every weekend we get together for virtual coffees and a little casual chat. How has this past week been for you?

If we were having coffee today, I’d invite you out onto the patio for our drinks. After weeks of miserable weather, drizzling rain, and temperatures dropping to 5°C during the night (it’s meant to be the middle of summer here!!!), it’s gotten warm and sunny again all of a sudden. So suddenly, in fact, that I was down and out yesterday with headaches and circulatory problems (rapid changes in temperature and air pressure have a tendency to mess with me). But I’m fine now.

If we were having coffee, I’d ask you whether you work with books in any capacity. No matter whether you’re a bookseller, bibliotherapist, librarian, literary agent or anything else to do with books. If you are I’d love to interview you about your job for a series of interviews I’m planning, to show what sort of jobs a love for books & literature can lead to. There will be an official call for interviewees soon, but if this applies to you or one of your friends please get in touch with me!

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I am still busy with my M.A. thesis. And though I love my topic, my concentration is waning… I guess I just want to get it down, and I’m at a point where distractions come easily and I jump at them to get away from the computer for a while.

Speaking of computer: my laptop is fixed for now! I was really worried I’d caught a virus, but the professionals had a look, and it seems like all the problems were caused by the touchpad going the way of the dodo. I can’t fully explain it, but from what I’ve gathered, the hardware stopped working, but the driver was still there, and commands still went through. As it’s a laptop that gets moved about a fair bit, some of those movements must have sent signals which were received, and so whatever it was doing got zoomed in or moved about, depending on what I’d last tried to do or how I touched my touchpad. It’s now been completely disabled and the driver uninstalled, so I’m now stuck with an external mouse (not ideal when literally working on your laptop in your lap and you’re used to dealing with everything through your fingertips) but at least my laptop is back to working order! Yay! I’ll still have to look for a new one eventually, though.

If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you that I’ve missed getting really lost in a good story. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve read a lot of good books this year so far (more than 60 books total and only the odd one out got less than 3 stars in my opinion). But I like it when you’re so taken by a story that everything else around you becomes unimportant. Food, sleep, assignments, it didn’t matter. So imagine my surprise when I found such a story not in a printed book, but rather in fanfiction! I won’t tell you which fandom I was reading up on, but I found a 5-story arc that gave such a realistic background to one of my favourite characters from that particular fandom, that I just had to know how it ended. At first, it wasn’t too bad length-wise. It progressed easily, with the first 4 stories only having between 8.000 and 32.000 words each. By the time I realised the final story had 258.000 words I was too hooked to abandon it halfway through. So, basically, I read around 328.000 words total in one go, or by my estimate, the equivalent of a ≈ 940-page novel in a day! On my phone. Despite needing several recharges. It was worth it, though. A lot of it matched my own headcanon regarding that character, and it’s given me story ideas aplenty.

If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you that I was in Düsseldorf on Thursday night, to see the National Theatre Encore screening of Hangmen. I loved it! I hadn’t been to a theatre screening since Shakespeare Day because this year the performances on offer near me are several months apart, rather than monthly as they had been before. But Hangmen, starring David Morrissey, was one I didn’t want to miss. It’s all set in the north of England, and it was refreshing to hear proper Lancashire, Yorkshire, and Greater Manchester accents again. If you didn’t know already, I spent 6 years living and working in the North West of England; 3 years in Carlisle, Cumbria, and 3 years living in Southport, Merseyside but working in Liverpool, Merseyside and Preston, Lancashire, so I consider myself a Northerner and my accent tends to get more Lanky the more comfortable I become talking to people. In fact, my old house in Southport was about half a mile from the county border of West Lancashire on the main route into Preston. The people sitting next to me at the movies had a hard time following the dialogue at times, which made me giggle. To me, the actors sounded just like the motley crew of regulars down at my local.

Last week, I mentioned that I wanted to get back into journaling, and I’ve made a start. Writing on the first blank page is always the hardest bit, but I’ve started with a “This Is Me” post. It won’t be a diary as such. My days these days consist mainly of work and study with very little else until the thesis is handed in. But I’ve got lists and experiences I want to write about. I’m fully counting on the therapeutic value of such an exercise. I’ve been printing out pictures and patterns to use as backgrounds to add a splash of colour to the journal, as I am hopeless when it comes to illustrations. Let’s just say, even stick people are a challenge….

©Literati Girl

©Literati Girl

Anyway, if we were having coffee today, that would be it from me for now. Tell me about your week. What have you been up to? And I’m sure the other Weekend Coffee Sharers would love to see you too!

Thank you for having coffee with me. Same time, next week?

Menschen mit Meer – Interview with author Alex Hofmann #tbt

Throwback Thursday to a December 2014 interview with my good friend and former colleague Alex Hofmann.

A German version of this interview was published on December 18, 2014 on my other blog Study.Read.Write.


It’s nearly 9pm when my door bell rings and Alex Hofmann stands grinning in my hallway. The author of Menschen mit Meer (lit.: People with Sea), a book about people with autism that was published by Kleine Wege in 2013, gives me a hug, gets comfy on the couch – and pulls a thermos out of her handbag.

“I totally forgot I’d made tea and I didn’t want to let it go to waste,” she explains while I go and get mugs and she pulls something else out of her bag.

“There are a few homemade Christmas cookies in this box. Help yourself!”

We talk about this and that; about space and psychology, autism and Menschen mit Meer, and our interview is almost an afterthought.

Continue reading

#WeekendCoffeeShare: If We Were Having Coffee… On August 7

Hello my lovely booklovers,

how are you? Welcome to the Weekend Coffee Share, a blog hop by the lovely Diana over at Part Time Monster. Every weekend we get together for virtual coffees and a little casual chat. How has this past week been for you?

My week has been A Very Harry Potter Week. Even if you’re not a Potterhead, you’ve probably heard that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was released last Sunday. I had my copy pre-ordered from Amazon Prime, because I didn’t trust the local shop here in Germany to carry the English language version of the book. But unfortunately, there was a problem with the delivery, and my book didn’t arrive until Wednesday, despite a promised delivery date of Monday 8when then got moved to Tuesday, and then Wednesday night). But I don’t seem to be the only one who had that problem – it seemed to have been universal.

So yes, as soon as I got my book, I read it through in two-and-a-half hours. I posted a review, though it contains spoilers, so be warned if you still want to read it! But if you’ve read it already, we’d probably discuss the book over coffee today!

If we were having coffee, we’d stop by my best mate’s house in Wuppertal, as he invited me over for coffee and cake. And he had great news! He and his fiancée have finally set a date, and I now have exactly two months to lose some weight and find a nice dress. I’ll also be their photographer, so that’ll be a lot of responsibility.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that I am trying to get back onto journaling. Just to be creative now and then. But it’s so hard to start a brand new journal with all its blank pages. I’ve made a list, though, of different things to write about. I’m not gonna use it as a diary, but as a record of things I like, don’t like, think about. Do you keep a creative journal? I’m currently busy printing out planner stickers and backgrounds to use for a pop of colour.

If we were having coffee today, I’d tell you that since I got into Australian Literature more (thank you, MA thesis), I’ve ordered quite a few books from Australia which are not available in Europe yet. Just a shame that books in Australia and New Zealand seem to be quite expensive. As much as I’d love to one day move to Australia, I think I need to save up for a proper book budget at this rate!

That’s it from me for this week’s Coffee Share. Check out the other Weekend Coffee Sharers, I’m sure they’d love to see you too!

Thank you for having coffee with me. Same time, next week?