I’m delighted to welcome Jo from Jaffa Reads Too to the blog today. You can have a look at her excellent blog here: Jaffa Reads Too
Thanks for agreeing to be part of my Blogger in the Spotlight feature Jo. First of all, would you tell me a little about yourself?
Thanks so much for the invitation !
I’m Jo, and my alter ego at Jaffareadstoo is Jaffa my ginger tomcat. I retired early after a 30 year career in nursing and now use my leisure time to indulge in my passion for reading. I have been married for 36 years and my hubby and I both enjoy walking and photography and so, combining both interests we enjoy trips to the countryside and to the nearby North West coast. I’ve always had cats and Jaffa is the latest in a long line of distinctive felines. He’s the only one who has shown any interest in reading.
What books/authors did you enjoy as a child?
I was an avid reader as child and enjoyed the usual Enid Blyton adventures, especially the Famous Five stories and the boarding school adventures at Malory Towers. I still have my original 1969 copy of The Owl Service by Alan Garner, which was my favourite story when I was 11. My interest in historical fiction was firmly developed during my teenage years when I devoured historical novels by Jean Plaidy and, it must be said, the rather fluffy, and decidedly girly, historical romances by Barbara Cartland.
What made you want to start blogging?
I’ve been an amateur book reviewer for several years but five years ago I decided to take a chance on blogging. A few of my online ‘book’ friends were already bloggers and so taking encouragement from them and using Jaffa as my inspiration, Jaffareadstoo was born in 2011. Since then blogging has opened up a whole new world and introduced me to authors and bloggers who enrich my reading and who have encouraged me to leave my comfort zone.
What do you enjoy most about blogging?
I enjoy discovering new authors and sharing my thoughts about books to a wider audience. I also love the support and camaraderie amongst the blogging community and feel like I belong to a rather special online family where ideas are shared and viewpoints discussed. It makes reading and interacting with authors and their publishers really fascinating. I absolutely love blogging and hope that the wider blogging community love what we do, certainly my blog is gaining in popularity, so we must be doing something right!!
Tell me about your blog – sell yourself!
I’ve never been very good at selling myself but I would hope that Jaffareadstoo provides a professional platform for the sharing of books. Good story telling has the ability to transform and a captivating story can take you out of an ordinary life and transport you into a magical world. I would hope that Jaffareadstoo, in some small way, encourages readers to give something a try which they wouldn’t normally have thought to pick up in a book shop.
What’s your favourite book you’ve reviewed in the past year? Or favourite three if you really can’t choose.
It’s really difficult to choose one book from the 45 stories I’ve read this year. It’s rather like choosing a favourite child, but so far in 2016 I have been impressed with these three, in no particular order:
Behind Closed Doors by B A Paris http://jaffareadstoo.blogspot.co.uk/2016/01/review-behind-closed-doors-by-b-paris.html
The Ballroom by Anna Hope http://jaffareadstoo.blogspot.co.uk/2016/03/review-ballroom-by-anna-hope.html
In Her Wake by Amanda Jennings http://jaffareadstoo.blogspot.co.uk/2016/04/blog-tour-in-her-wake-by-amanda-jennings.html
What are you reading just now?
It’s currently April 2016 and I am reading A Life Without You by Katie Marsh
Tell me about your reading habits: book or kindle, bed or bath, morning or evening?
I read both book and kindle and tend to be an afternoon book reader and evening kindle reader. I can quite easily read a book in a day, especially if it’s a gripping story, and I also have more than one book on the go at once, hence book in the day and kindle in the evening!
I have a reading corner in my study which gets the sunshine, so it’s perfect for a quiet hour or two of reading in the daytime, whilst my kindle is perfect for the evening when my eyes are tired and I need better light and larger print!
How can people follow your blog or connect with you on social media?
I can be found blogging most days at Jaffareadstoo http://jaffareadstoo.blogspot.co.uk/
And finally, if you could be a character in any book you have read, who would it be and why?
I’m a passionate fan of the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon – so I would have to be Claire Fraser – that way I could get to spend time with the rather special, Jamie Fraser!