I was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award by the very lovely Kerri from Kerri McBookNerd.  Wow, this is the forth time I’ve been awarded the Sunshine Blogger Award and I am very honoured as this award is for bloggers who are “creative, positive, and inspiring while spreading sunshine to the blogging community.” ☺️🌞.  I’m a bit behind in posting about this award and another I got but I wanted to share this as I want to share the love and positivity with all of you, and it’s another brilliant opportunity to get to know me a little better too! 😀  As with all awards there are some rules and here they are:

Rules:

  • Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog
  • Answer the 11 Questions sent by the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate up to 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

The Sunshine Blogger award image

So now you know the rules let’s get on with the questions! 🙂

Questions asked to me:

1. What was your favorite and least favorite book of 2020?

 Oh dear so many favourites to choose from but probably my ultimate favourite of the year was The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes.  This was a book I reviewed as part of a tour for The Write Reads and it was just amazing!  A YA thriller with a truly compelling plot follows Avery, a teenage girl who doesn’t come fro a rich background and lives with her sister ever since her parents deaths.  One day she is called to hear a reading of the will of a billionaire that she’s never heard of.  Avery turns out to be the inheritor of almost his entire fortune, but the billionaire liked to play riddles and games and Avery can only inherit the will if she stays in the mansion he lived in.  I just loved how this story played out, the scenario of inheriting a fortune is the first thing that hooked me but it really was the secrets of the mansion, the codes and riddles that kept me wanting to read on.  I just couldn’t get enough of trying to work out the clues before the characters did and the whole story was just so brilliant and gripping from start to finish.  I still want to re-read it and can’t wait for the sequel!

As for least favourite book I think this has got to be Rules for Vanishing by Kate Alice Marshall.  I’m sorry, I know some people have truly loved this Blair Witch style story and I will say that for a big part of the story I did like the format and what happened to the teenagers when a sppoky road opens up in the middle of the woods one night, but the ending was just so unsatisfying that it really left me feeling empty when I’d finished reading it.  The story follows a group of teenagers who meet in the the woods a year after a girl called Becca went missing, while searching for a ghost of Lucy Gallows.  Becca’s sister Sara is determined to find her and follows a spooky road which appears out of nowhere in the middle of the woods every year.  The story then switches viewpoint between the different characters, sometimes featuring story narration while at other times the story is footage on a phone, in either video format that’s described or texts sent back and forth between characters.  This style didn’t bother me, and I liked some of the eerie and spooky stuff too, some of it being seriously creepy.  But in the end it’s the book’s ending that ruined it for me.  We’re left with an open ending, where you’re left to guess at what happened and although I do like book’s that leave you with questions, I still want a decent ending to the whole story I invested hours in reading!

2. If you could only read one series/book for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Oh no don’t ask me to stay stuck, lol.  This is a tricky one because I’d probably prefer to go with a series as there’d be more to read and re-read and the real question is which series though?  There are quite a few I’ve enjoyed including some children’s ones like The Bolds and Julius Zebra but to be honest I’d want a series with a lot of writing and detail so I can really get absorbed into it for a long time.  I think two series that I might consider would be Alex Rider by Anthony Horowitz because there are so many books in that series and I still haven’t read them all, and they really feel like an exciting thriller movie every time I read a book from the series.  But the other one that I’d probably really pick is the Lady Helen triogy by Alison Goodman, a sort of historical fantasy, because I am obsessed with historical fiction, the beautiful and detailed descriptions and I could just read and re-read that series forever and always feel like hugging the books when I’ve finished them because of that amazing story and that slow burning romance between Lady Helen and Lord Carlston – I love a sweet and slow romance! 🙂 ❤

3. You have to choose one genre that will disappear overnight. What do you choose?

This basically means which genre am I least likely to read.  Well I never read anything erotica style so that type of heavy romance is definitely one I’d pick, but I also might say that out of the more common/less niche genres if there’s one I’d prefer to disappear it would be contemporary. 😮  I know, I know, it’s shocking but I’ll always pick a fantasy, science fiction, historical or romance above simple contemporary.  I hope I haven’t upset anyone with my choice! 😮

4. What is your favorite and least favorite trope in books?

Hmm, people often talk about their most and least favourite tropes in books but to be honest I don’t really mind most of them and don’t really hate it when there are tropes used over and over in books.  I suppose one thing I’m not such a big fan of is the love triangle.  Although I don’t mind if it’s done right, occassionally it is, but most of the time I just think it’s a cheap way to get two characters together and I just don’t like it because in the end there’s one character left out who you either feel sorry for or ends up a bit of a jerk (at least in the stories I’ve read).  Having said that though I’m reading a story with a triangle right now and I love it! 😀 😛  One trope though that I think I do oddly like is the anti-hero and the reluctant hero although much more the anti-hero (is that a trope?).  Something about it, even in videogame storylines (hello Shadow the Hedgehog!), just makes me enjoy following that story all the more! 😀

5. What is your favorite movie that no one really talks about?

Equalibrium!  Why does nobody know of this film when I mention it?!  The film stars Christian Bale and is set in a future dystopian world where, after another world war, the government’s decided to stop people from ever pursuing war again by inventing prozium, a drug which everyone injects into their necks and stops them from feeling anything.  All senses are dulled so that people are almost robotic in their demeanor.  Christian Bale’s character is a cleric, one of the most elite forces working for the government to seek out all sense-offenders, those who feel, and destroy anything which would create feelings or emotions, like music, art and animals.  One such piece early on in the movie I think is the Mona Lisa.  It’s discovered hidden at the start of the movie and the Bale’s character orders the burning of it because he feels nothing.

One day however he misses a dose of prozium because of an accident, and after a few hours his senses start to come back to him.  He starts feeling emotions, wanting to see the beautiful sky, to feel the smooth surface of a handrail against his skin, to feel pain, joy and everything that it means to be human.  He starts to feel things but he’s wary of being discovered, and it’s a great story where he’s trying to get to grips with all the feelings that the drug have made him forget while also doing his job as a cleric anddealing with supposed sense-offenders.  I won’t detail anymore but it’s the typical dystopian story where the world that he lives in is wrong, the government is wrong for trying to take away people’s right to joy, happiness and to generally feeling things, and later he realises that there is a resistance movement within the city where he lives.

This film has been eclipsed by The Matrix, which came out soon after and seems to copy the cleric’s outfit on Neo, but it is soooo much better and in some cases I think it makes necessary watching, especially with the world the way it’s going today!  It’s a bit violent with the martial arts/gun fights but apart from that it really is a film worth watching because of how spookily it speaks of the dystopian world we’re heading into today.  I know everyone’s focused on the virus and it is a horrible thing to have happened in the world, but all the things we’re doing to combat it may not be the right options to take (if you read up on some of the different scientific studies) and things like distancing and not hugging call to a emotionless society which, when you watch the movie with an open mind, it really does make you think of the eerie connections between the lack of joy and feelings in the movie and the lack of joy (singing, hugging, smiling) and feelings (distancing, fear of others as potential germ carriers) in our world today! 😮  Oh, and if you’re someone who knows of and believes in predictive programming then you’ll probably enjoy/freak out at the PPE and mask clad characters on the computers towards the end of the scene when Bale’s about done with the revenge bit! 😱

6. What book are you most excited to read in 2021?

There are sooo many I’m looking forward to I can’t just pick one!  Okay if I’m pushed then probably I’ll pick The End of Men by Christina Sweeney-Baird.  A book set in 2025 where a terrible virus is threatening to put an end to all male life.  Oddly the current world situation is making me more keen to read this especially as it seems to have some similarities with another dystopian future set book I read this year called Afterland by Lauren Beukes where ther ewas also some sort of illness that caused mass deaths of all males. 😮  I think I have a really big thing for dystopian stories, lol!

7. You’ve fallen into a book! Who do you think you would be: the protagonist, the villain, or the plucky sidekick?

Interesting question! 🙂  While I think it would be fun to play the villain or the fun sidekick, I think I’d be the protagonist in this.  I’ve always been my own person and would love to be the one going on the journey or adventure, and obviously surviving it to the end (which the other two might not! 😮 ).  Plus I have a weird obsession with playing a paladin in any RPG (especially Neverwinter Nights!), so I’m sort of always picking the hero character anyway, lol 😛

8. What is your favorite book that is outside of your favorite genre?

My favourite genres are fantasy, sci-fi, historical and thriller and it turns out I don’t really have any favourites that are outside of those genres, except for one and it’s a children’s book.  Sequin and Stitch by Laura Dockrill and illustrated by Sara Ogilvie is a lovely story following Sequin, a girl who lives in a small flat in a tower block with her seamstress mum.  Sequin knows her mum is talented and loves to help her with her sewing, and she takes care of her baby brother Stitch while her mum sews.  Sequin knows that it’s only a matter of time before her mum is discovered for her amazing talent, and despite the difficulties she has at school, with some of the girls being horrible to her, she loves her family and especially her baby bother.  One day though something terrible happens which could destroy Sequin’s world, but the story is so brilliant with the perfect ending that I was left utterly heartwarmed by what happened.

The story felt especially close to me because my own my mum used to sew things for clients when I was young.  Sequin’s situation with her neighbour and in particular with what happens to her and Stitch at the end is very powerful and also dramatic and you really feel the strong connection of love and emotion from the story.  I never thought such a short book would have such an impact on me but it obviously has!

 9. Pick your poison: coffee, tea, or hot cocoa?

I don’t drink coffee but love both hot cocoa and tea but if I’m forced to choose one then I’ll probably go with tea.  Typically British I know but a good cup of tea really can make me feel better…However now I’ve said this I’m craving a hot chocolate, lol! 🙂

10. Are you planning on participating in any year long reading challenges in 2021? If so, what are they?

The only year long reading challenge I have ever commited to so far is the basic Goodreads Challenge and this year I’m thinking of doing less books than last year because I didn’t reach my goal of 105 books for 2020, in fact not even that close at 92. 😦  What the goal is though I’m still deciding.

11. Once we’re able to travel safely again, where would you travel to first if money were no issue?

I would love to visit virtually anywhere in the world but if I’m honest I’d still love to see the Egyptian Pyramids.  I’ve always loved everything to do with ancient egypt but have never visited.  I think while there I’d also just love to visit other parts of the continent too like to see the wild animals in Africa and espeically, if it was possible, to visit the elephants that are part of The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.  The trust which was run by Dame Daphne Sheldrick until her death in 2018 (and continues to be run by her family and others), looks after orphaned elephants who are found alone in the wild, usually because of poaching or they simply lost their herd when travelling across the dangerous terrain (like rivers).  They are brought up by humans in a sort of elephant creche, with lots of baby elephants all playing together, before then being sent to a sort of nursery for older elephants (like going to junior or secondary school) before later being released back into the wild.  They choose when theiy’re ready to leave the safety of the creches and move into the wild and it’s such a lovely and amazing thing the people are doing.  The keepers sleep with the elephants, in the same stables so they can be up during the night for feeds or simply to comfort them and I just love how dedicated they are.  They’ve since dedicated time to looking after the odd orphaned giraffe and buffalo among other animals too!  I first found out about them by watching a show called Elephant Diaries, which I now have on DVD 😀 , but I’ve since kept up with the trust’s work.  Basically anything magical involving animals or ancient history and archeology and I’m there! 😀

People I am nominating:

Although I don’t usually tag people in blog tags I like to share the names of some amazing bloggers that I like to follow.  I can only nominate 11 so big apologies if you’re not on this list.  It doesn’t mean I don’t think you’re amazing, you all are! 🙂  And if you want to do this award but I didn’t nominate you then just do so anyway, after all it’s just some fun questions! 😀

  1. N S Ford – Writer
  2. Zigler News
  3. My Bookish Bliss
  4. GiftedAndChilling
  5. The Book Dutchesses
  6. Lily and the Fae
  7. Suzanne Rogerson Fantasy Author
  8. Invisibly Me
  9. Holly Reads a Lot
  10. V’sViewfromtheBookshelves
  11. Anita Dawes & Jaye Marie ~ Authors

Questions:

And here are my questions to everyone.  It’s tough coming up with questions I haven’t already asked but I hope you enjoy them. 🙂

  1. Do you have any hobbies your blog followers don’t know about?
  2. What’s your favourite animal?
  3. What is/are your favourite movies?
  4. What’s your creative outlet?
  5. Do you enjoy any sports (watching or playing – assuming no pandemic/lockdowns exist)?
  6. What would your dream job be?
  7. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
  8. What type of music do you like to listen to?
  9. If your life was made into a book, what would be the title?
  10. What food do you never get sick of eating?
  11. If you could bring back something/someone that has gone (disappeared/lost/died) what would it be?

 

Well this was fun!  Some really great questions asked and I hope you like my very random questions that I’ve asked here. 🙂  Of course there’s no need to do the award if you don’t want to and if I haven’t tagged you but you’d like to answer the questions then go ahead, just don’t forget to let me know where I can find your answers or leave them in the comments below 🙂  I hope you enjoyed this award and another big thank you to Kerri for nominating me! 🙂


What do you think of this award?  Do you like my answes?  What would you answers be?  Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂