Basil the Bootlegger

IMAG2423Years ago people used to comment all the time on what a small world we live in. That was back in the days before social media and the Internet, when you could travel to another county in the province or even a whole other province and cross paths with someone who knew a relative or neighbour from your little community. It seemed a big deal. A little serendipitous, a little uncanny that you should stumble across someone who shares that connection with you—enough to make someone declare what a small world it is. Usually here in Dalhousie, you’d meet someone who was acquainted with an old fellow who used to bootleg. Seemed no matter where you went in Canada, and mentioned you were from Dalhousie, his name would come up. I swear he’s East Dalhousie’s most famous person which is exactly what Cammie had to say about her aunt Millie in Flying With a Broken Wing. But seriously, that’s the truth about these little communities in Nova Scotia—the bootlegger holds near celebrity status. And now just look, there’s a blog post even named after the bootlegger from Dalhousie. Yup, people still remember him from back in the day. I should only hope for the same recognition with my books. Hmmm, maybe I need to rethink this writing career of mine!

These days our world has been made even smaller via the Internet and social media sites. Now, we’re stumbling across people from all over the world. I can promise you though, not one of them has heard tell of Basil the bootlegger. Well, maybe now if you’re reading my blog. With all the social media sites out there we’re privy to information we’ve never had before and our world just keeps getting smaller. Some of you might remember that I was contacted last winter from someone in the US who wanted a picture of an ancestors tombstone here in Dalhousie. I snapped a photo and sent it off…Super cool. I was happy to oblige.

If you’re an author, the world has also become smaller with all the different sites at your disposal. A Google search of you or your book will bring up reviews as well as all the sites your book is listed on. You can read what others have to say about your book on GoodReads and what rating they give it. A site called WorldCat.org will show you the libraries around the world where your book (print and digital) is available. How cool to know that “Flying With a Broken Wing,” is in a library in Perth, Australia, and that someone in Singapore can sign out a copy of “Bitter, Sweet” and read about life in little old East Dalhousie, Nova Scotia—my backyard yet a totally different world for them.

An author can even track their book sales (print and digital) on a site called NovelRank that allows you to track your book on any Amazon site around the world. Novel Rank tells me that someone in France downloaded a digital copy of Flying With a Broken Wing. Tell me you don’t think that’s cool! There’s also a site called “Author Central” that tells you areas in the US that reported sales of your books, as well as the number of copies and how your book sales rank. Copies of my books have sold in Ohio, Colorado, New York, Minneapolis, Washington and Boston. (I believe this site keeps track of, not only Amazon sales, but other sales as well.)

And if all that doesn’t have you falling over with adulation for the Internet, you can become involved in promoting your own book through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or by starting your own blog through WordPress or Blogger. Whew! I’m exhausted just writing this. Some might say we really don’t need all these tools at our disposable, and that might be true, nonetheless they’re here. Like it or lump it. I prefer to like it, but also to pick and choose how much time I’ll devote to any one of these sites. Let’s face it, if your book makes a peep anywhere in the world you have the ability to know about it. Wonder why some days the Internet can make us feel like a spy?

To prove my point about how small the world has become I just did a Google search on Basil the Bootlegger and a whole page of links came up. Seems he’s more world famous that I previous thought! Okay, so I’m just joking with you, but I bet I had you fooled for a second.

So, I’m sure you’re curious to know—was Basil actually related to me or just someone from the community? You bet he was a relative, a distant cousin a few times removed. Wow, never thought I’d be boasting that fact. When all is said and done my claim to fame might not be the books I write at all, but the fact that I have a connection to the once infamous bootlegger of East Dalhousie. Go figure!

The only thing now that could bring Basil world wide recognition would be if this post went viral. Now wouldn’t that be a hoot?

What are you thoughts on the small world we live in today? Is it good, bad, scary or do you fully embrace it? More importantly, do you know who Basil the bootlegger was or were you related to him?

 

Amy’s Marathon of Books—Guest Blog Post

I’m so excited to announce that Amy Mathers has kindly agreed to be a guest on my blog today. Perhaps you’ve already hear of Amy and her Marathon of Books. She’s been getting quite a bit of media covering and, yes, she even appeared on Canada AM a few weeks back! The buzz around Amy and her “Marathon of Books,” began back in December and continues to grow. If you care about books, teen books in particular, I hope you’ll support Amy and her quest to raise $100,000 dollars to endow a Canadian teen book award. I know you’ll be inspired by Amy’s story and her determination to help promote teen fiction in this country. To date Amy has raised $10,000 dollars toward her goal. I think that’s an amazing feat in itself. If you’d like to support Amy, why not pop on over to her website HERE and find out how. 
Dear Laura Best Blog Readers,
AmyMy name is Amy Mathers and Laura has kindly invited me to write a guest post for her website. I am currently reading my way across Canada with Canadian teen fiction books. My Marathon of Books is a year-long venture and I have been reading a book a day since January 1st. I started my reading journey in St. John’s, Newfoundland by reading books either set in St. John’s or written by authors either born or living in St. John’s. I’m going province by province and territory by territory, and after 90 days of reading I am now reading my way through Quebec.
The goal of my Marathon of Books is to raise money to fund a Canadian teen fiction book award to be given out on a yearly basis by the Canadian Children’s Book Centre. Currently they award six cash Canadian children’s book awards at a yearly awards gala, but none of them are specifically for teen fiction.
As a volunteer for the Canadian Children’s Book Centre and an avid fan of teen literature, I felt not having a specific teen award to support the efforts of our incredibly talented Canadian teen fiction authors was a real gap, and one that I hoped I could do something about.
You see, books have played an important role in my life. I was born with a genetic illness called Glycogen Storage Disease (GSD), type 3A. It’s considered to be a metabolic disease, but also a type of muscular dystrophy. My type affects the liver, heart, and muscles, and my case was so severe that I needed and received a liver transplant when I was five, and then a heart transplant when I was 27. I am now 31 years old.
Terry Fox is my hero, and I love the message he sent to Canadians through Marathon of Hope that people dealing with disabilities and illness could still live the lives they wanted to live despite their limitations.
But having a muscular dystrophy made me different than Fox, and even different than Rick Hansen. I use an electric wheelchair for mid to long distances and while dealing with chronic illness my whole life long has given me the fortitude of a marathon runner, I am not physically able to be one.
Instead of being a runner, I am a reader, and I realised that I could be like Fox and Hansen in a different way, by reading my way across Canada instead of running or pushing myself in a manual wheelchair. It’s a journey of the mind through literature, and I am experiencing everything Canada has to offer.
A typical marathon day starts with me reading a book that can range from just under a hundred pages to over 400 pages. I take the rest of the day to think about and write a review to prove that I’ve read the book and hopefully promote it, and also a daily Tumblr post to let my followers know about my reading experiences.
Some nights I’m up pretty late finishing my writing, because depending on how my body is doing that day and if I had other events going on, my brain can take time to work things out. Also, while I had figured out that I could read about 10 pages in six minutes, I didn’t take into account page size, spacing, and font size which affects my reading speed on a daily basis. Terry Fox could run a kilometre in about six minutes, and so every ten pages I read counts a kilometre across Canada in my Marathon of Books. I’m up to 19,532 pages of reading, which translates to 1953.2 kilometres travelled across Canada.
My favourite part about my Marathon of Books is that I’ve had tremendous author support. I’ve heard from the likes of Deborah Ellis, Eric Walters, Vicki Grant, Gordon Korman, and, of course, Laura Best. I’ve read so many books that I probably would have never heard about or picked up before my journey, and I love getting to review each one and brag about the talent our country has. Also, with all of the books that helped me through my life, letting me experience what I couldn’t physically and providing me with the mental strength I needed to face my situation, not to mention my profound love of Canada and its health care system, I can’t help but feel that my Marathon of Books is a wonderful way for me to say thank you for all that I have been given.
I hope you’ll visit my website, www.amysmarathonofbooks.ca, to read my reviews and for more information. I’ve already reviewed Laura Best’s Bitter, Sweet which you can read here: http://amysmarathonofbooks.ca/bitter-sweet/. Also, I encourage you to take the 13 Book Challenge and read your own way across Canada through reading one teen fiction book from each province and territory. If you do take the challenge, I hope you will get in touch with me and tell me about your reading journey.
Warmly,
Amy Mathers
Thank you Amy. It’s been such a pleasure to have you visit my blog. I wish you all the best and will continue to watch your progress in the coming months!
You can follow Amy on twitter,  Goodreads Facebook, tumblr and Youtube.

Why You Gotta be so Mean?

Um—thanks for the title, Taylor.

Some how Taylor Swift’s song “Mean” came to mind as I was poking around Goodreads one evening a few months back. While I don’t check out a lot of reviews, from time to time my curiousity gets the best of me. I want to know what others had to say about a book I really loved. I won’t mention any book title because it’s irrelevant. It could be any book for that matter. What doesn’t feel irrelevant was the one star ratings this amazing book received. I was totally shocked. But I’m a grown-up now with a book of my own, and another one on the way, so I have to suck it up and accept the fact that not everyone appreciated this particular book I happen to love. Fair enough. It’s a free country and thank goodness for that. What disappointed me, though, were some of the nasty reviews. Yes nasty! Mean and down right negative to the fullest degree. Is it possible to have a negative review that isn’t nasty? Of course it is. We’re all adults. Saying we didn’t care for something doesn’t have to sound nasty at all.

I liken it to zucchini. We grow a lot of them, and if you know anything at all about zucchini you know they grow like crazy. Zucchini-growers usually have zucchini coming out their wazoos. You even ask perfect strangers if they’d like to take some home because you’re so happy to share.

Now you either like zucchini or you hate it. It’s understandable. What I’ve noticed through my years of growing them is this: if you ask someone who has a 101 different recipes for zucchini in their drawer if they’d like some they’re tickled pink, couldn’t be happier. But ask someone who hasn’t any idea what to do with them and they get a little huffy under the collar. They make nasty comments. It’s never a simple, “no thank you.” Poor, poor misunderstood zucchini. You remind me of that book I love that received the nasty comments.

This has me asking the question, WHY? Why would someone take the time to write such nastiness? I guess I’m a Pollyanna in many ways. I like to look on the bright side of things. It doesn’t mean that I talk myself into liking something if I honestly don’t. I mean if you don’t like zucchini, I can’t persuade you otherwise. We like what we like. Period. We don’t like what we don’t like. Period.

I couldn’t understand why a few of the reviewers were so upset. Okay there’s nasty and then there’s just NASTY.  This felt NASTY, personal to the point where I had to wonder what it was about this book that triggered such hostility.

But I’m not a therapist, nor do I want to be. And yes, I’m a Pollyanna, and will probably remain so all my days. Negative does not have to be nasty. You can decline my zucchini without hostility. It’s okay, it’s just zucchini.

Do you ever check out the reviews of some of your favourite books? Have you ever stumbled across a NASTY review? Most importantly, does the thought of zucchini make you happy or hostile?

Surviving a Bad Review

So you’ve written a book, and you’re published. You’re on cloud nine dancing barefoot with the pixies. I mean, you should be, it’s a big accomplishment. Your book receives glowing reviews. Friends stop you on the street to tell you how amazing they think your book is. Some thank you for being the awesome writer you are. Everyone is happy, they’re up on that cloud with you bouncing around to “Oh happy day,” and it’s a glorious feeling. They love you… I mean your book. Those months of sweat and toil were worth it. You’re going to be all right.

 

But then the unthinkable happens. You’re googling your book one evening, stroking that ego a bit more, trying to uncover even more people who love you…I mean your book. You see your book mentioned and you click the link.  Bam! You’re hit with a hard blow to the ego. Someone you don’t know has written a review. They hate you…I mean your book. This can’t be. Surely they didn’t understand the deeper meanings, or appreciate all the intricate plot threads. They couldn’t have. Just look at that! While summarizing the book, they wrote the facts wrong. Were they even paying attention? What the heck, your main character was a boy, not a girl, they lived in the city, not the freaking country. I mean, how credible can this reviewer be? Did they skim over the most amazing parts? If only you had them here. Let them tell you to your face they don’t like you…I mean your book.

 

I don’t care who you, if you’ve written a book and sold any amount of copies, someone  out there is going to be less than enthusiastic about it. While having everyone rave about your book is absolutely divine,if you think everyone who reads it is going to love it you need to get in the real world. I know, I know, you already know that. And if you’re lucky those who don’t like it won’t rate it on Goodreads or write a review. While all that may sound good in theory it’s not all that practical unless you don’t venture out onto the Internet.  Eventually, a book you write is going to get a one or two star rating, or an unfavourable review. That’s when you’re faced with the reality of it all, it’s right before your eyes. No denying it. Someone doesn’t like you…I mean your book. Worst of all they told the whole world.

 

So how’s an author to get past a bad rating or review, you might ask? Here are a few suggestions I have.

 

 

  1. Accept the fact that this is bound to happen. I’m not talking about accepting it on an intellectual level, but accept it in your heart. Hoping and wishing everyone will love your book won’t change the facts. People have different tastes. You do. Why wouldn’t someone else?
  2. Learn not to take these things personally. The person rating your book probably doesn’t know you from Adam. They’ve got nothing vested in you. You’re a name. That’s it. Remember, they aren’t saying they don’t like you. They’re saying they don’t like what you’ve written. There is a difference.
  3. Spend time on Goodreads. Check out your favourite authors. Read the reviews of books you absolutely love. What you’ll find is your favourite authors all wrote books that someone didn’t like. You might think these reviewers are nuts, but it doesn’t change the facts…or the rating.
  4. Be the first to write a bad review for your book. Don’t let someone else beat you to it. Print it out and post it where you can see it during the early days of publication. This will help absorb the shock when the real thing comes along. Remember not to be too nasty or obnoxious.
  5. Weigh the good reviews with the bad. Which one outweighs the other? If you receive 100 poor reviews or ratings and only three good ones (all from close friends) maybe this is telling you something. Otherwise, blow it off. One bad review, or two or three isn’t the end of the world.

 

Hopefully, these suggestions will help cushion the blow of that first bad review. I say, take comfort in knowing that you’re in good company.

 

Has a bad review ever set you in a tailspin? How did you deal with it? If you’re on Goodreads have you ever given a bad rating or review? If so, did you give any thought as to whether the author would read your review or see the rating?

 

 

This Week

It’s been an interesting week. I like weeks that are interesting, when surprises nab you by the scruff of the neck and you end up doing and seeing a lot of different things instead of the same old, same old.

I’ve been managing to get up at 5:30 each morning to get in a bit of writing before work. For me, that’s the big news. Yay me! This is big because it means if I have a hundred and one things to do in the evening I still have some writing time in, and I actually feel like a writer for yet another day. I’m excited about the story I’m working on– although shouldn’t writers be excited and enthusiastic about all their work? Hmmm, that’s debatable and seems to depend upon how smoothly the words are flowing and how forthcoming the story is. Sometimes a story is down right stingy and will only come out a trickle at a time. It ranks right up there with pulling teeth—slow and painful. If you’re lucky the story is generous and provides you with the perfect flow of words at just the right time. You’re never stumped as the story unfolds and it’s totally delicious and fun.

I attended an afternoon tea at a friend’s house on my day off. There were twelve of us, and some of the most interesting and talented people I’ve met in a long time. The muffins were none too shabby either. Mmmm, thanks Gail!

I went in search of  a place this week  as part of some research for the story I’m working at.

Earlier in the week I was in the Chester area. I strolled around the grounds of a property that is valued at a cool 5 Mil. Rather impressive and wishing now I’d snapped a few photos of the view as I ate lunch overlooking the ocean, watching the sailboats glide across the water. This photo was snapped as we drove past later in the day and is just an example of what we saw..Trust me it was amazing, and yes I did feel special. The home had obviously been built many years ago from rocks washed smooth and round from ocean waves. It had three stone fireplaces and four stone pillars. The gardens were to be admired. Hard to imagine all the work that would have gone into making such a property the showcase that it is. And that’s just the outside. I would have jumped through hoops to see the inside but, alas it wasn’t meant to be.

Anyone from Nova Scotia knows that Chester is pretty pleasing on the eyes, not to mention there’s some fine real estate in the area. The view of the Atlantic Ocean is awesome, with many tiny island offshore. To top it off there have been plenty of movies shot in Chester.

  • Echoes of a Summer (1976)

  • The Secret (1992)

  • Dolores Claiborne (1995, exterior of Vera Donovan’s)

  • Two if by Sea (1996)

  • Black Harbour (1996)

  • Love and Death on Long Island (1997)

  • Catch a Falling Star (2000)

  • The Weight of Water (2000)

  • Deeply Lynn Redgrave and Kirsten Dunst; East Ironbound Is., etc. (2000)

  • Blackfly (2001)

  • A Town Without Christmas (2001)

  • Beach Girls (2005)

  • Candles on Bay Street (2006)

  • Noah’s Ark (2008)

At the moment the TV series, Haven, is being shot there. I sat right across from the spot where they were shooting a scene. I’d like to say it all looked pretty darn impressive. The truth is, if you had no idea what was going on, well, you wouldn’t have had any idea what was going on. You might just wonder why so many people were gathered in one place. You might even think, so what?

Here are a few small discoveries I made this week:

I discovered this week that “Catching Fire,” has 485, 121 ratings on Goodreads. Makes the 15 ratings that my book has on that site look a bit measly. I didn’t even bother looking at how many ratings “The Hunger Games” have. One thing is for certain no one with anything at all to do would check out every single one of those ratings or the 47,000+ reviews… But that’s the way. I just feel happy and fortunate for the few my book has.

I ate the most scrumptious scallops in the world—seriously–in a little place in Western Shore called Mo’s. Who knew?

I also discovered that I’ve been quite slack at visiting all your blogs…Believe me when I say, there just hasn’t been enough hours in the day..But if you haven’t seen me for awhile I ‘m going to try and fix that this weekend..

I discovered a few moments ago the spam monsters are trying to infiltrate my blog–400 spam comments in my queue. That’s crazy.

Lastly I’ll leave you with this photo of a beautiful spot I discovered  this week and simply couldn’t resist taking a photo. It’s lovely and secretive, and brimming with inspiration. I could write a short story about this place I’m sure. It sets my mind afire.

What new discoveries have you found this week?

Facebook Update

Since I blogged about facebook a few posts ago, I just thought I’d let you all know that I decided to go with an author’s page. Right or wrong, the decision’s been made. I know some of you are already aware of this because you’re on my personal facebook account. If in time I realize it’s a pain to keep up and serves no purpose, I’m sure it won’t be the first page that’s fallen to the wayside.

Truthfully, it was a difficult decision to make. I wrestled with feelings of: are people sick of me at this point and would just roll their eyes? (I’m sure some have. For goodness sake I have a time or two or three…lol!) What I’m planning now is to eventually stop posting anything writing related on my personal account unless it’s something important that I’ll then share from my author page. I’m sure it’ll take time to figure this all out. Eventually I’ll come up with a system that works well and one I’m comfortable with. For a time I’ll likely post my blog updates (although I never post every blog update on facebook anyway.) Truthfully, I struggle with this as well and feel that people who aren’t familiar with the blogging scene probably aren’t interested in reading blog posts unless I have some news to share. I’m sure it seems self-indulgent to them. Maybe that’s just me being self-conscious, but it’s kind of how I feel at the moment.

On another note some of you have already seen the new theme on my blog. A session of high speed over the weekend at my daughter’s house enabled me to check out some of the new themes that wordpress is offering. When I came across this one, it caught my eye. I don’t, as a rule, think of myself as a “pink person” but I told you a few posts back that I was looking forward to some changes.

On the drive to New Brunswick this weekend I finished reading The Hunger Games even though Goodreads said I’d already read it. (Guess I need to learn a bit more about updating on Goodreads too.) I wouldn’t as a rule choose a book like this, but I’m glad my son-in-law passed it along for me to read. I really enjoyed it, which goes to show, we should never enter a book with any preconceived ideas. Not only is it not fair to the book, but it’s not fair to us.  It pays to have an open mind.

I also want to say to those of you who were brave enough to write a few lines to accompany the photo I posted in the last post, you all amazed me with your creativity.  Thanks for taking part.  🙂

So now I’m wondering, for those of you who have facebook accounts do you share any or every blog post with your friends? Are you ever afraid that your non-blogging friends will get tired of you if you do? If you’re reading this and you’re a non-blogger do you get a bit tired of seeing blog updates on facebook? Be honest. I’ll still love you if you say yes.  🙂

Are You a Book Cheater?

Many people openly admit to being unfaithful to the book they’re reading. They even admit to being involved with, not just two but, multiple books at the same time.

With so many great books out there it’s sometimes difficult to settled down with just one book. Tough to resist, I know. Right now, I’ve got three books pulling on my shirtsleeve, flashing me with their pretty covers. Worse yet they sit there winking whenever I walk past. Flirts!

I’ll admit it’s a big temptation, and sometimes I’m weak and pathetic. I catch myself taking sneak glances at them, even arranging them about on the coffee table just so. But I’ve vowed to be a faithful reader. I’m not about to cheat.  I’m a one-book woman.

So what? It’s a free county, right? We’re free to read one, two, three even four books, heck we can court an entire library shelf if we want. Who’s to stop us?

Exactly.

I’m not going to get into any big moral issues here ‘cause I ain’t your mama. Nor am I here to judge. What I am is curious about the experience of being a book cheater. We can call it research if you want.

So for the sake of research I’ll pose this question. Do you believe it’s possible to love a book, follow the plot and characters when we are not faithful to the book we’re reading? Will we confuse the Bob in one book with the Harry in another? Will we remember that Meg likes coloured stones, hates cottage cheese and is the third child in a family of circus performers who have been travelling about the country since being placed in a witness protection program? Can we fully appreciate a book, and its characters, when we have multiple books on the brain?

I’ve known people who admit they just weren’t that “into” a particular book. Fair enough, every book isn’t for me, and I certainly don’t fall in love with each and every book I read. However, having said that, I do question their ability to judge a book fairly once they admit that they were reading several others at the same time. Instead of a read that should have taken a few days at most, it ended up stretching out for weeks as it was picked up, abandoned for another, and then another, not to mention the two week vacation they took over the Christmas holidays where they refused to read anything more taxing than the noontime special at their favourite restaurant before finally, finally running back begging for a second chance.

For me, a book has always been an experience, a whole little world nestled between the covers, a place for me to submerge myself, a place that will either end up being a good experience or a not so good one. Seems to me that the more books I  choose to become involved with, the more difficult it would be not to whisper Brian’s name when I’m reading about Fred. Talk about embarrassing.

Another thing I can’t imagine is how anyone can rate a book or writing a review if they are attracted to another, or three, at the same time.

 It’s not uncommon to see people listing multiple books as *currently reading* on Goodreads, but is it fair to any book if you show interest in another? Now I’m not attempting to try and tell anyone how to run their reading lives. I’m just curious about how the other half of the book-reading public live.

Confession time:

Are you a book cheater? Do you often romance more than one book at a time? Do you think you can fully appreciate or not appreciate a book when reading multiple books at one time?

Goodreads or not Goodreads?

So I’ve been looking around on the Goodreads site lately, and finding it quite interesting. Apparently, I had signed up for an author page about a year and a half ago but that was as far as it went. What did I know?

I’ve since added a little info about myself and a profile picture and will keep working at it over the next little while. I know, I’m slow, but I sometimes have to be eased into these things. It’s all pretty new to me and I’m still figuring it all out.

I began adding the books I’ve read in 2012 but not planning, at this point, to list the books I’ve read in the past. I’d never remember them all. I also haven’t been rating the books I’ve read and haven’t yet decided if I will. This is part of the reason why I resisted this for so long. The thought of rating books, especially from the authors I know, feels a bit weird. I also have to admit to not fully understanding the rating system or if we simply come up with our own. My reading tastes are varied to say the least. How would one use the same rating system for a non-fiction book as a work of fiction? I’m sure most people who rate books have a system that works well for them.  Maybe I’ll discover something that feels right over time.

Now, I’m not going to say that I’ll never rate any books or write any reviews because I have learned over the years that “never” is a finite word, and nothing in life seems finite least of all our opinions and tastes. Perhaps I will one day rate a book or write a review if I read a book that simply blows me away. Honestly, that doesn’t happen often. On the other end of the scale, I rarely find books that I despise. I’m an easy reader to please. So long as I’m reading something I’m content.

 As I looked at some of the book ratings I found it interesting to see that some popular books might garner one or two stars from various people yet others gave that same book five, the top amount. Now I know that we all have specific tastes in books. I get that. Still, it makes me wonder how there can be such a wide variation. I also found the reviews interesting and people’s reasons for the rating they gave a particular book especially if the book was given only one or two stars. Some reasons seemed quite insignificant so I’m feeling that there must have been other factors at play, maybe a simply “I just didn’t like this book,” but then the reader feels an obligation to give their reasons for such a low rating. Hey, who knows what goes through a reader’s mind? I’ve always been of the opinion that if I really like a book, I’m willing to overlook a few little things along the way. If I’m looking to be picky, I can usually find something. I’m sure most readers are the same. Which brings me to the question: are there any perfect books out there? I suppose that, again, depends upon the reader.

Are you a Goodreads member? Do you find it difficult to rate books? Are you influenced  at all if you know a particular author? What rating system do you use? Have you even given a book a two or even a one star rating?

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