This week, and bravely first up, is Joanne Baird, so Joanne, please introduce yourself.
Hi Wendy, thanks for having me on your blog. My name is Joanne and I live in Portobello in Edinburgh, very close to the sea.
Lovely part of the world. How long have you been blogging and what is the name of your blog?
I started blogging in April last year, really just to share what I’d been reading with like-minded people. It has taken off somewhat since then and I love it! My blog is called Portobello Book Blog (imaginative!) and you can visit it here: http://portobellobookblog.com/
It's a great name.
So tell me, how do you fit all this reading into your life? (marriage/kids/job)
I fit it all in by reading every spare minute I have! I don’t work, though obviously I don’t sit reading all day, lovely though that would be. I read before I go to bed, on weekend mornings before everyone else gets up, on the bus, in the bath, while waiting to pick up the kids from their various activities etc. I am a fast reader and a book will usually only take me two to three days – sorry to all the authors who spend months writing their books!
Ha! I sit in the car with my Kindle when my son is at football. #badmother guilt!
What keeps you blogging?
All the wonderful books that authors keep writing! I originally set up the blog so I could share what books I’d been reading with bookish friends and am amazed that so many people have actually visited it! I’ve had over 10,000 page views and have almost 700 followers on Twitter. But numbers aren’t the important thing. I genuinely get a thrill if someone says they have enjoyed my review and have ordered a book because of it. That’s what blogging is all about to me, spreading the word about books I’ve enjoyed. I have also so much enjoyed becoming part of a book community that I never knew existed and have made so many blogging friends. It’s a very supportive and friendly community.
It is, isn't it?
And what's your favourite genre?
Ah now that’s a difficult question to answer. I would probably say contemporary fiction as that seems to cover quite a few possibilities. But then I do like a bit historical fiction and crime and thrillers – as long as they’re not too graphic. Stories about people and relationships are what I like best, not necessarily romantic relationships though.
I like a bit of historical too, but mine has to be romantic. :-)
I mentioned my Kindle, are you an e-reader or a paperback girl?
Both although I probably read more on my Kindle these days than paperback. It’s especially handy for holidays and as my husband pointed out last night, it’s a lot easier to keep reading a Kindle when you’re eating rather than a book which you have to keep putting down!
And reading at night.
Can I have Ewan MacGregor please? He was born on exactly the same day as my husband so that seems as good a reason as any. Plus he’s rather easy on the eye!
You can have anyone you please. :-)
And do you have a favourite classic?
Oh yes, that’s an easy question to answer! Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen is my favourite. I love the contrast between the sisters Marianne and Elinor and I love the supporting cast of characters that Austen created. I also rather love the Emma Thompson film adaptation with all the rather handsome leading men, including of course the late Alan Rickman as patient, kind Colonel Brandon. How sad it seems to say the late Alan Rickman.
That was brill. (Can I get away with saying brill at my age???)
So, what are you reading at the moment?
I’m just about to finish The Silent Hours by Cesca Major which was my choice for my book group. I have really loved it. The emotions and descriptions are just wonderfully conveyed. Next on the list is The Trouble With Sheep and Goats by Joanna Cannon which I have heard so much about – really looking forward to it.
Well have fun with those. And I'm constantly in awe of how much bloggers find to say in their reviews. I've tried and I'm lucky if I can come up with a couple of lines.
Thanks for coming on, Joanne, and anyone interested in finding a new blog site to read and chat about reviews with, why not check her out on the link near the top. Alternatively, you can reach her on Twitter: @portybelle and Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/portobellobookblog/