One Lovely Blog Award and The Versatile Blogger Award

I’ve been a bit slack acknowledging a few award nominations. The reason for the delay was because I had just recently been nominated for some awards and I wanted to space out my posts a little bit. The best thing about receiving nominations is being able to acknowledge blogs you enjoy.

The very lovely Lea at Sea and Literary Tiger both nominated me for the One Lovely Blog Award. Thank you so much. I really enjoy reading both your blogs.

The rules:
• Link back to the blogger who nominated you.
• Paste the award image on your blog.
• Tell 7 facts about yourself.
• Nominate 15 other blogs that you would like to give the award to. (I’m going to reduce this number.)
Contact the bloggers that you have chosen and let them know about the award.

I’d like to nominate the following blogs for the One Lovely Blog Award because they truly are lovely – word-wise, visually and I just love their writing styles. If you are looking for new blogs to follow, check these blogs out:

1001 Children’s Books 
Emeline Morin
The Book Jotter

Seven Facts About Me
I must be boring because I’ve run out of 7 things to say about myself. So I thought I would recommend 7 books that I like.

1. Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier is a lovely read. Daphne du Maurier is one of my favourite ‘classic’ authors. Dona, a rich and bored English housewife, is staying at her husband’s estate in Cornwall and discovers that a boatload of French pirates have been using a creek on the property as their hide-out. What’s Dona to do? Fall in love with the French captain, disguise herself as a cabin boy, and go out on a raid with them. But then Dona’s absent husband comes to visit … Also check out Jamaica Inn by the same author.
2. Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett is an epic fictional saga about the building of a cathedral in 12th century England. It also explores the lives of people during this time – from stone masons to wool merchants. This book encouraged me to go and see some of Europe’s most famous cathedrals.
3. The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons is one of my favourite ‘romantic’ reads. This is book one in a trilogy about Tatiana and Alexander, two young Russians who meet in Leningrad during World War Two and fall in love. Alexander is an officer in the Red Army – and it turns out he is also the boyfriend of Tatiana’s sister, Dasha. Cue star-crossed, war-crossed lovers and plenty of drama and angst.
4. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell is a classic read set in 19th century England. It explores the great divide between the agricultural south and industrial north. Margaret Hale moves with her parents from the tranquil green south to the northern town of Milton. Her father, a clergyman, has given up his parsonage and turns to teaching workers. One of his students is John Thornton, a Cotton Mill owner and a self-made man. Margaret dislikes him and his uncouth ways on sight. She likes him even less as she starts to make friends among his ‘poor’ factory workers. Amid a backdrop of strikes and owners verses workers, Margaret and John clash over social issues. Little do they know that their fates are soon to change …
5. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell is one of my favourite books. Was there ever a more selfish character than Scarlett O’Hara? But for all her faults, she is a character you can’t help but admire. And Rhett Butler is perfect as a scoundrel with a conscience. I also love all the historical detail about the American Civil War. It made it so much easier to study this period of history in high school after reading this book.
6. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis was one of my favourite series when I was a kid. I thought it was so cool that there was a fantastical world that could be reached through a wardrobe and I loved Aslan the lion. It was interesting to read this series again as an adult and interpret the books in a whole different way. This series fired my imagination then and still does now.
7. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte is a story that never bores me. I will gladly watch all the different TV and film adaptations. It seems like the classic Cinderella story – a poor, plain governess catches the eye of her employer the very rich, eccentric, Mr Rochester. The two fall in love despite all social barriers. But then comes the big twist in the story. (I wish I had read this for the first time and not known about the twist.)

The Versatile Blogger Award
Thank you to Amanda at amandameetsbook for nominating me for The Versatile Blogger Award. This is my 2nd time accepting this award.

The rules are:
• Thank the person who gave you this award. (Thanks Amanda!)
• Include a link to their blog. (Done)
• Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
• Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.
• Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself. (Please see 7 things about me in the post above.)

As I already nominated some great blogs at the start of this post, I will just nominate a handful of blogs that I have recently discovered. They are all a fantastic read.

The nominees for The Versatile Blogger Award are:

The Adventures of Me
The Bookworm Chronicles 
Dating for Dinner 

Blog Envy: Passing on The Versatile Blogger Award

Just over a month ago, I made my very first blog post – To Blog or not to blog? That is the question  – and outlined my blogging intentions to read more books, write about what I read and to connect with fellow booklovers and bloggers. And I have. In fact, I’ve been bitten by the blogging bug.

The best thing about blogging is the people I have connected with from all around the world – people who share a passion for words, books, writing and art in all its different forms. I’ve probably spent more time reading other people’s blogs than reading books – oops …

I’m so excited to be awarded The Versatile Blogger Award from Sapna and Sharmistha at Easyondeyes. These two book-loving women are posting a book review every day of this year on their blog. That’s right, 366 book reviews! With 7 months to go, you should definitely go and check out their blog and offer your support.

The rules of The Versatile Blogger Award are:

If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded The Versatile Blogger award.

  •  Thank the person who gave you this award. (Done)
  •  Include a link to their blog. (Done)
  •  Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
  •  Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award
  •  Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

Great Blogs I have discovered

It is my great pleasure to pay it forward and list the blogs that have made me contract blog envy.  As I am new to blogging, I have stopped at 10.

Fascinating Writers and Avid Readers:

  1. Kellie Elmore is an American author who has just released a book called Magic in the BackyardYou should read the extract on Amazon. Kellie writes beautiful prose inspired by her South-east Tennessee surroundings. You can also follow Kellie on her author/writing journey at her blog.
  2. I connected with Mary from Tothebalcony over her post ‘Why read books if you can watch movies?’ Mary is a book lover from Kenya who is currently living in Italy. I love her book choices!
  3. Bundleofbooks is a bookworm who reads A LOT! If you need a good book recommendation, check out her blog!
  4. I connected with Louise at her blog Louise Radcliffe over a mutual love of Charlaine Harris books. Louise blogs from the UK about books, baseball and the bible!
  5. Lea At Sea is a Canadian writer who blogs about reading and the writing process. She writes interesting posts that generate plenty of conversation like: ‘Where do you get your story ideas from?’
  6. Joy at Irreverently Untitled writes about books, movies, animals and lots of other interesting things. She also takes amazing photos!
  7. Austenprose is the perfect place for a Jane Austen tragic like me. Join the discussion of Jane Austen’s novels, movies, sequels and the pop culture she has inspired.

The Professionals

  1. I discovered Sorryiamnotsorry through Freshly Pressed. It’s a light-hearted look at love, life and the sometimes scary world of dating. It’s laugh-out-loud funny!
  2. Earl’s World is a photography blog I also discovered through Freshly Pressed. Earl’s photos make ordinary objects look extraordinary.
  3.  Literary Minded (Angela) is a professional blogger here in Australia and at the top of the book blogging game. This site is full of book reviews, interviews with authors and all the insider information about what’s going on in the publishing world.

Now the most difficult part – 7 Things About Me

  1. When I picture my dream home, I only picture one room – the library. My dream library has two storeys of shelves, a wrought iron spiral staircase and one of those cool ladders on wheels. And books, lots and lots of books!
  2. I love dogs. I don’t own one so just inflict my affection on any poor canine that crosses my path.
  3. Being in or near water makes me happy and at peace. I grew up swimming in the sea. I think I must have been a dolphin in a past life. 
  4. Music plays an important part in my life. I listen to music on the way to work, at work, on the way home from work … I also play piano and guitar very badly.
  5. I spent a couple of years in South Korea teaching English to children and adults.  This week marks the 10th anniversary of my first stint there. It’s hard to believe that the youngest kids I taught would now be fourteen and the oldest kids would be adults in their mid-twenties. Where did time go? And why do I still feel like I’m twenty-one?
  6. Jane Austen is my literary hero. When I lived in the UK I kind of turned into a Jane Austen stalker. I visited one of the houses where she lived, Winchester Cathedral where she is buried, the house where she died, the Jane Austen Centre in Bath – even the village of Lacock where they filmed some of the outdoor sequences in the BBC TV series Pride and Prejudice. I never get tired of rereading her books.
  7. I’m addicted to Japanese food. (Great, now I’m craving sushi!)