Lisa @ Southern Girl Reads is a member of She Reads and that was how I became acquainted with her. As I began checking out her blog, I found that I really enjoyed her writing style and that we had similar tastes in books. I think Lisa is pretty fab- and I’m pretty sure ya’ll will agree!
Lisa- when did you begin blogging?
I started blogging on January 8, 2008 without the slightest idea of what it would turn into!
How did you come up with the name Southern Girl Reads?
Living in the south, I have a deep affection for southern novels. The name just came to me one day and I thought it was perfect. It explains who I am and what I do.
What are your thoughts on blogging today in an ever-changing book-ish world? Are blogs helping other readers connect with good books?
Blogging certainly has changed a lot since I started. I feel like it used to be a small tight-knit community but has grown into a worldwide phenomenon. I am fortunate that I still have many of the connections to the early bloggers today. I believe that readers tend to look to bloggers for recommendations and reviews because we are average every day people giving honest, thoughtful opinions without being compensated. Sharing books is what we do simply for the love of books.
When you are not blogging (or reading!)- what do you like to do?
One of my other passions is cooking, so I spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking and trying new recipes. I’m also a big sports fans, so I enjoy watching sports on TV- the Winter Olympics was great! I also enjoy listening to music.
Do you have any #literaryconfessions?
Well, I have a couple confessions: I’ve never read any of the Harry Potter series, nor have I read any of the Twilight Saga. There, I said it out loud!!
Do you have a #literarycrush?
I don’t have many literary crushes, but I love a ‘bad boy’, so when I read John Hart’s latest novel, Iron House, I was completely taken in by the protagonist, Michael, the mob enforcer. Tall, dark, ruggedly handsome! I guess you could say I had a crush!
What books are you looking forward to reading in 2014?
There are some really great books that came out recently that I’m looking forward to. One is Tom Franklin’s The Tilted World. Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen is another one I have at the top of my list. One of the first books I plan to read in 2014 is A Land More Kind Than Home by Wiley Cash. I also plan to read more crime novels this year. Karin Slaughter, in particular.
In your opinion, what book was the best book you read in 2013?
Wow, that is a tough questions. At the top of my list of new books is The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes. I also loved Someone Else’s Love Story and The Art Forger. That said, I recently read The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and thought it was brilliant.
You have a beach vacation planned. What are the 3 books that you must bring?
1. Lost Lake by Sarah Addison Allen
2. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
3. The Last Camellia by Sarah Jio
Are you an e-book or tree book lover? Or does it not matter?
Over the last two years, I’ve turned into more of an e-reader. But that is simply because I have a degenerative retinal disease that makes reading paper books harder to see. Its easier on my eyes to use my Kindle Paperwhite. I still love collecting tree books for my personal library though. I prefer the feel of a real book in my hands.
You are a member of She Reads- an organization that helps women find great books. What is the experience like- helping authors get the word out about books and connecting women with great books?
It has been a wonderful experience for me. What I love is getting introduced to writers that I wouldn’t have read had it not been for She Reads. As a reader, I tend to stay away from most mainstream writers who get all of the hype and attention from bookstores and the like. I love reading debut authors and sharing their books with my non-blogger friends who think the only writers out there are James Patterson and Nora Roberts! No offense to those writers but there are so many talented storytellers out there who don’t get the recognition that other more well known authors do. I make it my business to promote those writers.
In your opinion, what do you think is more important- a good opening line or an ending that leaves you wanting to discuss the book with everyone?
Oh, definitely a great ending. Speaking for myself, I may forget an opening line, no matter how great it is, once I’m on page 50, but a great ending will stay with me indefinitely. Especially if that ending sparks a lot of conversation or debate.
If you could go on a literary road trip- where would you go?
Oh, this one is easy. Since I live in Florida, I would head north to Savannah, make a stop at Tybee Island and then continue on to Charleston, South Carolina. Charleston is one of my all-time favorite literary locales. After that, I would board a plan and fly to Seattle, Washington. Sarah Jio is solely responsible for my love of that city and the surrounding area.
Do you give books a presents? If so, what is a book you want to give this year?
I love to give books as presents, but sadly my family is not overflowing with readers. I do have friends who like to read and if I were to give them a book, it would be between The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty or The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes.
Happy Reading and Bookishly Yours,
T @ Traveling With T