Top Ten Tuesday: Bookish Memories

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Bookish Memories — described by the meme host as share stories of your reading life as a child, events you’ve gone to, books that made an impression on you, noteworthy experiences with books, authors you’ve met, etc. Reminisce with me!

In no particular order, here are ten random bookish memories that have stayed with me:

1 Traveling to Phoenix, Arizona in 2014 to attend a book event with Diana Gabaldon for the release of Written in My Own Heart’s Blood, the 8th book in the Outlander series. I had consistently been unable to attend every one of her events in my own town, so I made the decision to travel for this one, and it was so worth it!

2. Reading with my kids! Highlights include cracking up while listening to my 3-year-old trying to recite along with Richard Scarry’s A-Z book of cars. Hilarious! Also, reading the entire Harry Potter series out loud with my son, and starting him off early (as an infant) by reading poems to him from A. A. Milne’s books.

3. My favorite childhood reading spot — I grew up in an observant Jewish household, which meant no TV or other forms of entertainment on Saturday afternoons. We had a big armchair in the living room, and I would spend hours on those afternoons curled up in it with a book.

(via Pinterest)

4. Meeting Amber Benson (Tara from Buffy!!) at a small book event at a local bookstore. She was doing a reading from a book she’d written (Death’s Daughter), and my daughter and I arrived early to browse… and met Amber while she was also browsing. We chatted, and she was so nice! (And clearly a book lover…)

5. Attending summer camp as a young teen and having copies of Our Bodies, Ourselves passed around the bunk. Between that and certain Judy Blume books, it was an eye-opening summer for a lot of us!

6. Going to a silent reading party — and enjoying silent reading in a room full of 60+ other booklovers.

7. Going to a midnight release party for Breaking Dawn and winning a trivia contest! Yes, I won a Twilight trivia contest, and I’m not (too) embarrassed about it.

8. Reading and sharing with my book group, who are just a fantastic group of readers (and are truly fantastic people in all ways).

9. Reading everywhere I go, including on some beautiful beaches and in gorgeous national parks.

Photo by Pixabay on

10. Sharing books, book ideas, and long, long visits to bookstores with my wonderful daughter, as a child and as an adult.

What bookish memories do you cherish?

If you wrote a TTT this week, please share your links!





Top Ten Tuesday: Real & fictional bookish events that I’d love to attend

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, featuring a different top 10 theme each week. This week’s topic is Book Events/Festivals I’d Love to Go to Someday (Real or Fictional).

It’s hard to thinking about attending anything other than a Zoom meeting these days! But the topic has got me thinking…

First, I’ll start with some fictional events — events from beloved books that I just wish were real so I could go!

1.  The Willow Creek Renaissance Faire from Well Met by Jen DeLuca: Huzzah for the Faire! I want to put on an amazing costume (lady in waiting, perhaps? or maybe even tavern wench…), check out the jousting, and wear flowers in my hair.

2. Solstice at Craigh na Dun: As any Outlander fan knows, solstice is a perfect time to catch some Druid ceremonies, and with luck, journey through the standing stones… and maybe meet our very own Jamie Fraser? (Yes, I’m happily married in real life, but shush. This is fiction.)

3. The pumpkin patch in Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks: It’s just so cool! I want to eat all the gooey treats, go for a hay ride, and visit a haunted house.

4. Quidditch World Cup: Okay, I’m not ordinarily a sports fan, but I think I can make an exception for box seats at the next Quidditch World Cup. Especially if omnioculars are included!

5. Austenland (in the book by the same name, by Shannon Hale): I’d be down for a week spent taking a turn about the room, going to balls, and doing some creative matchmaking.

And in real life…

6. I’ve always wanted to attend Book Expo America (BEA), but since it’s in New York every year and I live on the West Coast, it’s really unlikely to happen.

7. San Diego Comic-con: This one should be more doable. Someday!

8. Surrey International Writers Conference in Vancouver: A friend of mine volunteers at the conference each year, and each year, I’m so envious of all the fabulous writers she ends up meeting!

9. Book launches and books signings: I miss in-person events! I’m looking forward to the day when we can all feel safe and happy walking back into crowded bookstores and meeting our favorite authors.

10. Silent reading parties: Same as with #9 — I’ve loved these in the past, and can’t wait until it’s safe to gather together again. Hanging out with booklovers is the best!

Drink, eat, and read. Silently.

What bookish events are at the top of your wishlist?

Please share your links!





I went to a silent reading party… and had a (quiet) blast

File this under “things only a book lover would understand”:

I went to a silent reading party this week, and it was the most fun I’ve had in ages!

What’s not to love? A room full of bookworms (book enthusiasts… book nerds… book freaks… ), drinks all around, silent (but companionable) reading, and raising money for a good cause. I ask you — can you think of a more fun way to spend a Tuesday evening?

(The fact that I can’t says a lot about me, I know.)

So here’s what it’s all about:

Drink, eat, and read. Silently.

Drink, eat, and read. Silently.

Silent Reading Parties started several months ago here in San Francisco, hosted by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler) and Radio Silence. They’re held on the first Tuesday of each month at a downtown hotel — a hotel with a very stylish “library bar”, which feels cozy and bookish as soon as you step inside. Starting at 6 pm, talking stops and reading begins. And the room remains silent. For an hour and a half, there’s light jazz music playing in the background while 40 or so bookish folks sit and read.



Seeing how it’s a bar, there are drinks, of course. There are menu cards on the tables, so you can order drinks and munchies without breaking silence.

And that’s what we did.

I finished the last few chapters of Dark Matter by Blake Crouch, while my friend read volume six of Saga, then started on the “Weird Junior Edition” of the Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook.

We read. Drank some wine. Ate some fries. Grooved to the jazzy tunes. And then at 7:30, the silent time was done, and the readers shook themselves out of their trances. Some stayed and schmoozed, some went on their merry ways. And I’d bet that most will be back next month for more.

All this wild and crazy fun, and a good cause too! A portion of the drinks proceeds plus the contents of a fishbowl full of cash (which Lemony Snicket personally handed round for contributions) all go to support the library of one of our local public elementary schools.

reading-4As if I needed any further inducement to sit and read!

My son thinks I’m weird, and wonders why I couldn’t have just sat at home by myself with a book instead of going out to read. But he doesn’t get it… and I bet anyone reading this post absolutely does.

Booklovers are solitary creatures in their pursuit of great reading — but who says we can’t read alone, together?


Consider me hooked… and absolutely looking forward to next month’s (sssssh… no talking!) party.