In this Books Love Me series, I’ll be featuring literature lovers from all over the globe. They will allow us to enter their world of fiction. Join me for an enjoyable tale describing the juicy details of…
Annabelle’s Love Affair With Literature
Kia ora! My name is Annabelle, I’m 24 years old, and come from New Zealand. For the past year and a half, I’ve been teaching English in Japan on the JET Programme. I love language in all its forms, travel, and fashion. You can read more about me and my experiences abroad on my blog, Origami Kiwi.
Would you describe your love of literature as a torrid affair, a summer romance, or “it’s complicated”?
It’s complicated, but it’s turning into a summer romance! I’ve loved reading from a very young age, and I was constantly devouring books as a child. That lasted until university, when suddenly I had so much research to read, and study to do that it was hard for me to find time to read for fun. Reading took a back seat in my life, but these days I’m reading much more, just like old times.
What book is your childhood sweetheart? Why?
It’s a totally obscure book called “Zoe’s Zodiac”, written by Mary Jo Stephens, which was given to me by my cousin. It’s about a girl, Zoe, who wins a contest where the prize is a new pet every month for an entire year. I was obsessed with animals as a child, so that sounded like the best prize ever! I still love the book today. It’s very funny and sweet, but there are some important lessons in there too.
What book made you fall in love with reading?
That’s such a tough question, since I feel like I’ve loved reading longer than I can remember! I guess I’ll go with the book that made me fall back in love with reading for fun: Gone with the Wind, by Margaret Mitchell. It’s such a wonderful story paired with great writing.
Stream of Consciousness
What is your funniest or favorite “book reading” experience?
I think one my most memorable reading experiences was reading Into the Wild. My brother gave it to me just before I left New Zealand on a trip to China, and I read it on the way there, and all during my travels around the country. I guess the sense of adventure in the book really echoed what I was feeling on my own trip.
Who is your literary alter ego?
I’d love to say some classic literary heroine, but honestly? Mia Thermopolis from The Princess Diaries.
Genre: Literature and Travel
What came first, your love of reading or your love of travel?
Definitely my love of reading.
What book sparked your love of travel?
A mixture of curiosity in other cultures, a love of beautiful and interesting sights, and a desire to meet new people!
What are your travel reading habits?
Usually I use my kindle, and read a little bit before bed when I’m travelling. I usually keep quite busy when I’m travelling though (I’m not a read on the beach person, really) so sometimes I’m too tired.
What is your favorite literary travel quote?
“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” – Susan Sontag.
If you could get any book quote tattooed on your body, what would it be? Why?
“I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.”
I’m an “always do what you want to do” kind of girl. This is one of the few short quotes that has really spoken to me.
What do you read when you are stressed out?
I go back to old favourites, especially YA fiction. It’s so easy to read quickly, and I already know and love the stories. Tamora Pierce novels are really comforting to me for that reason.
What is the last book you read?
In My Father’s Den, by Maurice Gee. It was one of the best books I’ve read so far this year, I highly recommend it.
Are you a book sniffer?
What would the title be of your memoir?
“Funny Wee Thing”
If you could only recommend one book to people for the remainder of your days, which book would it be?
Another tough question. Aside from the books I’ve already mentioned, there’s a relatively unknown book I’ve loved since I was a teenager called Winter of Fire. It’s a kind of YA dystopia with elements of fantasy. I think that novel, and its author, Sherryl Jordan, are very underrated, so I’d love more people to check it out!
Thank you Annabelle, we appreciate the glimpse into your literary love affair. To read more interviews and get inspired by more book lovers , click here.
If you have an insatiable love of literature that you wish to share, please email me at aplacelikemeinagirllikethis (at) gmail (dot) com.
And don’t be shy, it’s encouraging for the rest of us literature lovers to glean inspiration and wisdom from the journeys of others!