Armchair BEA is for those who can’t make it to New York for BEA, but still want to participate in the all the book blogger connecting fun. I participated last year and absolutely had a ball!
Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Tell us a bit about yourself: How long have you been blogging? Where are you from? How did you get into blogging?
I’m Katie and at the moment I’m blogging from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. One reason why I can’t be at BEA this year is because I’m moving out of my place this very week! I’m getting ready to head out West for some work and to visit family and to go to ALA at the end of June! I’m originally from Northern California, and I’ve been adventuring through the world of books for as long as I can remember. I studied children’s and young adult literature in graduate school (London & Pennsylvania) and about a year after I finished my studies, with the help of a friend, I decided that blogging was the perfect way to keep sharing my thoughts about the books I was reading. That blog, which was created in June, 2012, was originally Spirit of Children’s Literature. But, this year you may know that I changed the name of BOOKISH ILLUMINATIONS because I wasn’t just blogging about middle grade fiction, but young adult and adult titles as well, and so I wanted a name that was a little more broad.
Why do you loving reading and blogging?
Reading is absolutely one of my favorite things to do, for loads of reasons! First, it exposes me to worlds, people, and situations I might not have encountered in my own life, and it helps me to understand other perspectives that I might not otherwise understand. I love that about books—it can nurture our social sensitivity and help us to grow in compassion for other people. Second, I appreciate the way that books make me want to do more—travel more, try new things, meet new people. And third, I love the art of storytelling and the way that stories can communicate meaning and ideas that just aren’t the same in any other form. It’s only through reading that I can encounter a certain form of meaning that I think only stories can communicate.
So I guess it’s been almost THREE years since I started blogging, and I absolutely love it, especially because I emphasize the spirituality of the texts I read. Spirituality in children’s literature was my research focus for my grad work so you can imagine I absolutely have a ball reading and chatting about books with these aspects in mind! And of course, one BIG reason I love blogging is the friends I’ve made chatting about books and everything else.
What is your favorite genre and why?
This is a toss up between historical fiction and fantasy.
I love to read historical fiction (in children’s, young adult, and adult genres) because I appreciate vicariously experience life in another historical period through a fictional story. It’s the closest thing to time travel I’ve discovered (so far).
What book are you reading right now?
I’m reading two books right now—one adult, The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson, which is a sliding doors type story—it switches between two different realities for the MC. The other book I’m reading is an e-ARC of a middle grade book, The Book Scavenger. It’s so much fun so far!
What is one book everyone should read?
Wow—this is a hard question to answer, but I had to answer it. My current answer would be a middle grade book by Kate DiCamillo: The Magician’s Elephant. I think this book appeals to young readers and older readers, and I think there’s a strong theme of connection that I just love! You might cry, but it’s worth it.