What's All This, Then?

Well, this is the history of my blog. *cue hushed, reflective music*

Once upon a time (July 2009, to be precise), I decided to take up blogging. I am not quite sure what precipitated this decision. Perhaps it was that "You call yourself a writer, yet you have never let anyone read your work?" guilt complex. Maybe I felt like I needed a more constructive way to spend my summer. Regardless, it just seemed like a good idea at the time. (Famous last words.) I initially started a blog about school over on Wordpress, but my technological ineptnitude conspired against me and, as a result, I never even could post an article.

After a few days of frustration, compounded by screaming hysterical threats at my computer, I switched operations over to Blogger and decided that the new focus of my blog would be books. I love books. Always have. When I was little, the best way to make me behave was to threaten me with taking away all of my books. Likewise, the best way to bribe me was to give me more books. (Sadly, these tactics still work rather well on me...) Books became, and still remain, my refuge. They comfort me, encourage me, and teach me. I read all of the time, anyway, so I knew I would have a constant stream of fodder to write about. In addition, I was always filling my diary with long descriptions and frequent analysis of whatever I read, so all I had to do was transfer that from my ragged, dog-eared notebook to my laptop.

I also had a desire to encourage more people to read. I believe that many great novels are ruined for most readers, because these works are encountered only in schools for study. I love literature and am a firm believer in the values of studying it, but I think the methods most schools use do not encourage literary appreciation. I reject the notion that classics are out-dated wastes of time. I wanted to approach these books from the standpoint of a reviewer and a reader, not as a critic or an academic. My hope when I started this blog,which still remains my wish, is that my reviews will encourage readers to pick up the classics to introduce themselves to the unforgetable characters, riveting plots, and compelling themes, not the symbolism or literary structure.

My first blog posts were almost solely classics, but after a few months, I began to broaden my horizons. I realized that though the classics are amazing works that most definitely should be read and cherished, there are still great books being produced today that deserve recognition. I am also an avid reader of genre fiction, so I felt that the worlds of mystery, suspense, fantasy, horror, and science fiction needed to be covered as well.

I hope I now provide a fairly good variety of classics, contemporary works, and genre fiction, though I feel as if I have neglected hard sci fi and am working to remedy that. I also try to focus on worthy YA novels. I am currently in the spring semester of my sophomore year in college, so I have been resorting to more genre fiction, novellas, recommendation lists, rereads of old favorites, and assigned reading from my World Literature classes to complement my school schedule. I have recently added a new monthly series -- "The Unblogged Chronicles" -- which features mini-reviews of all of the books I read over the month that I didn't have time to write about.

 This summer I hope to continue reading classics, especially some of the longer, more complex 19th century works that I am unable to read while in school, due to time constraints; continue reading and start reading several fantasy and sci fi series recommended to me by readers, namely Terry Pratchett's Discworld series, Orson Scott Card's Ender Game series, Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series, and T. E. White's The Once and Future King series; and acquaint myself many new and old authors whom I have not had the priviledge of reading...yet.

*end hushed, reflective music* So that's the story of my blog, as of now. Thanks for taking the time to read and feel free comment or give me recommendations. I welcome recommendations (some of my favorite reads in this past several months have been recommended to me by readers) and have eclectic taste in fiction. I like classics, literary fiction, historical fiction, mysteries, fantasy, horror, thrillers/suspense, sci fi, and some romances, provided they are gothics or historical. I love non-fiction, history, and memoirs/biographies, as well. So don't be shy. Feel free to tell me about your favorites. I will try my best to read them and post reviews. Also, feel free to tell me what you think of books you've read based on my recommendations. Do you agree with my review or did you think I was completely off in left field? By all means, let me know!

Thanks so much! Happy reading!

Zella   3/3/10