Kicking off!! *Armchair BEA Week*

Monday, May 26, 2014




Hello, Armchair BEA! After armchairing at BEA for two years (the first two years since the inception of Armchair BEA), I took a two-year break, because, Armchair BEA can get really hectic, and I spent the last two years taking it slow in the blogging world, without being on my computer or phone all day long. Obviously, I've been missing all those buzz-filled days that the BEA brings with it, because I'm back again doing this. From the year I started blogging, I've wanted to go to BEA one of these years, and I still haven't done it yet. Interestingly, I don't feel as eager to go to BEA as I did four years ago because
  • of a change in reading tastes? 
  • of a change in motivation for blogging/reading? 
  • I am generally less keen on new releases as I am on the backlist?
  • I don't see that many books at BEA that excite me as much as I wish there were?
  • Or, most probably, I'm more likely to pick a book if people are talking about it already than just seeing it on a list for the first time?
Either way, it works for me. I don't feel too bad about sitting at home, in my reading armchair, while I vicariously live through all the BEA tweets. Armchair BEA, however, I love. Sure, it's still all about the BEA, but it celebrates the bloggers more than the event in itself, and I'm all about sharing or being part of some blogger love. So without rambling on for much longer, here are my answers to some of the Armchair BEA questions for the day:

Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging? Where in the world are you blogging from?
Hello from Virginia! I'm Athira, programmer by day, reader/blogger by night. I've been blogging for four and a half years on this blog, far longer on my personal blog, which I have shut down since. I remember chancing into the book blog world a few days before Christmas of 2009. Countless hours of googling and browsing later, (and mind you, it was right at the end of a depressing semester), I knew what I wanted to do.
**Fun fact**: My blogiversary comes right at the beginning of the winter holidays that I always forget about it until the first blogger I follow mentions his/her blogiversary in the new year. Yep, I think I've celebrated my blogiversary only once so far!


What genre do you read the most?
I used to believe that I enjoyed literary fiction the best. But over the years, I've realized that's not entirely true. The books I end up loving the most are usually the genre-busters - books that step away from convention, books that are written using some novel techniques. Me Before You, Where'd You Do Bernadette, The Buddha in the Attic, Good Neighbors, The Dinner, The Elephant's Journey are some of them.


What does your favorite/ideal reading space look like?
I only got this set up early this year, after lamenting for a long time that I didn't have an ideal reading spot in our home. It actually wasn't planned much, but more thanks to couple of items coming together at that nook.



Spread the love by naming your favorite blogs/bloggers (doesn’t necessarily have to be book blogs/bloggers).
  • Life hack/productivity blog: Lifehacker
  • Dog blog: The BarkPost
  • Food blog: The Kitchn
  • Book Games: Sporcle
  • And a shout-out to some of my favorite bloggers: (I wish I could just get Feedly to give me the names of all the bloggers I love, but off the top of my head, here are some of them. I know I have missed many others, though.) Helen, Kathy, Natasha, Ti, Jenny, Juju, and Sam.


If you were stranded on a deserted island, what 3 books would you bring? Why? What 3 non-book items would you bring? Why? 
There are not many books I will reread. But there a tiny few that won't bore me to death.
  • If I'm stranded on an island, I will need an uplifting read, and for that, I'll take the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the last book mainly because it is the one I have reread the least number of times, but also because, as the last book in the series, it is cheerful, determined, and conclusive.
  • I'll also need something that will keep me motivated and courageous. Unbroken is the perfect book to remind me every day that there are people who have thrived through the worst the world had to offer.
  • And finally, a book to remind me that the worst (zombies!) has not yet passed - The Walking Dead collection.

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86 comments:

Faith Hope Cherrytea said...

def liking your reading space! gorgeous light and comfy chair!
enjoy it...=)

Becky B. said...

Nice, I like your desert island picks and your reading space does look pretty cool.

Lisa said...

You know, I always forget about my blogaversary until I get my domain renewal reminder. My blogaversary is actually a couple weeks before the renewal because I started on a wordpress.Com blog and then moved to a self hosted blog.

Lisa @Just Another Rabid Reader

tanya (52 books or bust) said...

I can't believe how many book bloggers i know from Virginia!! Seems like a hot bed of literary activity.
As for the BEA I still really want to go. Part of the reason is because i've never been to NYC. I also would love to meet other bloggers IRL. But for now, virtual meetings will have to do.

La La in the LiBrArY said...

Hello from a fellow Armchair BEA member. My first blogoversary is in about four months and I have been planning my giveaways for a couple of weeks now. I have a countdown widget on my blog so I won't forget. This is my first Armchair BEA experience.

Stephanie said...

I don't feel to bad about being home in the comfort of my own home today either, although I it has only been a week since the chaos of RT Convention. No way would I do both. It is exhausting.
I adore your reading area. The chair is lovely and I love the natural backlight.

Allison Bruning said...

Hello from Indianapolis, Indiana. I found you on the Armchair BEA. This is my first time participating in the Armchair BEA event. I'm a historical romance novelist whose books mainly takes place in Ohio. My dream is to attend the BEA in New York and sign books all day long with the other authors. I'm looking forward to that day.

rhapsodyinbooks said...

Yes, I like innovative techniques too. Sometimes the plot is sacrificed, but still, it's fun to see all the new styles!

Mel @thedailyprophecy said...

Haha, great idea to bring something depressing with you to on a deserted island to remember things could be worse.

Mel@thedailyprophecy

AH@badassbookreviews said...

I love your reading area! Very nice. I'm kind of glad that I am home and not at the craziness of BEA although one year, I'd love to attend.

bermudaonion(Kathy) said...

I was so excited to find a Hokie blogging! I love your reading space!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you! I'm so pleased with it too!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you! I had plenty of fun picking the books.

Laurie C said...

I'm popping around visiting bloggers and haven't even gotten out of my pajamas! (The best part about BEA?) I love your list of Featured Posts off to the right and the look of your whole blog, actually! I also love your reading space!

Kristina D said...

Love your comfy chair. Not sure I could handle the craziness of the real BEA, this is enough for me. I also tend to read more back lists than current unless it's a favorite author.

Athira / Aths said...

How funny because it's the same here! My renewal is about a couple of weeks after my blogiversary, so if I don't remember by then, I will definitely remember by the time the renewal reminder rolls around.

Athira / Aths said...

Oh yeah, meeting the bloggers at BEA would be so much fun! And then to navigate BEA and stand in signing lines to pick up books would definitely be so awesome! I'm glad that the Armchair BEA folks did a great job getting this virtual event set up!

readingtheend said...

Aw, thanks! :)



I feel you about not caring about BEA -- I lived in New York for three years and didn't go to BEA any of those years. I loved meeting bloggers, but just wasn't that interested in doing the actual convention.

Athira / Aths said...

I hope you enjoy the Armchair BEA! It can be a lot of fun! I end up adding so many blogs to my feedly during this week.

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you I l love the nook too.

I cannot do two conventions back to back either. Unless I get paid for it. That would be too crazy!

Athira / Aths said...

I hope you have so much fun there! I sometimes wish I was at BEA too, but it can get crazy, so I'm okay here, I guess.

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you! I hope you enjoy this week's event!

Athira / Aths said...

I agree! Many of them have something else that doesn't work, but still, the book keeps me turning pages and gets me excited about the innovative techniques the author used.

Allison Bruning said...

I am looking forward to it. I only learned about the events this year. So I'm in my chair doing the Armchair BEA thing this year.

Athira / Aths said...

Haha! I hope it won't turn out to be like a prophecy, but it may be interesting to read such books.

Athira / Aths said...

Yeah, I would love to attend some time, but I'm okay at home too, I guess. :-)

Athira / Aths said...

I am pleased with it too. I've had a few friends tell me the same, so it has been worth it. It took a long time to decide on a spot for it.

Stormy C said...

Your reading space looks lovely! Looks like there's tons of light coming in too, which is perfect. Deathly Hallows would be a great book for a deserted island. Satisfying & conclusive.

Suzy Turner said...

I love your little nook... your chair looks especially comfy which is what's most important when getting into a good book! Great to meet you at this year's ABEA :)

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you so much! I hope I see you around. :-) I cannot wait to start my trek around blogosphere. Breakfast done, lunch delegated, time for me to enjoy.

Athira / Aths said...

It is hard for me to read a new book if I haven't seen it on a blog yet. I would love to meet bloggers at BEA though - that would be funner!

Athira / Aths said...

I was super interested in BEA at the beginning, but that has wilted considerably since. Now I just like following it from my computer.

Athira / Aths said...

Aww, I read you wrong at first. I hope that day comes soon for you. You should plan for it next year. I have heard from many that they had a lot of fun over there.

Athira / Aths said...

I love the nook too. My favorite place to read and blog from!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you for dropping by! I'm just going to start my trek across the blogs for today's Armchair BEA posts!

Sam_TinyLibrary said...

Your reading spot is lovely, especially with all the light coming in. I could sit there for hours!
Thanks for the shout out, I love visiting your blog too :)

Cindy said...

I love your little reading spot....I have taken part in a few arm chair BEA's and its just as crazy online as it is at BEA..looking forward to reading your post this week

Kristen H. said...

Such a pretty spot to read in! I love the books you'd take with you on a deserted island. I've never made it past the first volume of Walking Dead, but have enjoyed the tv show. I don't really want to go all the way to New York for BEA and love the Armchair version as well, glad you joined in again!

Lisa said...

Then, of course, every year I plan to do some kind of big to do related to my blogaversary, and then I get the renewal notice and it's like, Crap, I forgot again!

Athira / Aths said...

You're welcome! :-) I like it that the reading spot is right next to the kitchen, unfortunately, a lot of dishes have smoked, oops!

Athira / Aths said...

I agree - armchair BEA can be crazy! I have been on the blogs for the past five hours!

Athira / Aths said...

Isn't TWD show so addicting? I can't wait for the next season to start. The books are great too - I've only read the first compendium. I need to start the second one.

Athira / Aths said...

Haha! I hear you. Sometimes, I think that I should just choose a new more convenient date and celebrate my blogiversary on that day.

Cindy said...

we need to post that bloggers have to take an hour off so that we can go and eat HEHE and this is only day one LOL

Karen said...

Hi Athira, I found you via the BEA Linky list. Lucky you to live in Virginia ( I have very fond memories of my holidays there many years ago). Interesting questions about the change of heart re attending the event in person - maybe it's that the armchair event has got stronger and stronger each year so you get as much value as from being in person??

I don't jump at the newest titles either - often I'm well behind when it seems everyone else is talking but the must read book. thats ok for me, I like to give some time before I decide whether it really is one I'd enjoy.

Karen (Booker Talk)

Armchair BEA Cheerleader 2014

Judith (Leeswammes) said...

Athira, great that you're back for another year (week!) at Armchair BEA. I hope you'll have a great time. I've also been book blogging for four years and still loving it.

JoAnn @ Lakeside Musing said...

I have the same thoughts about attending BEA... I'd love to be there, but it's not killing me to stay home either. Loved your book choices - Me Before You, Where's You Go Bernadette, The Dinner - so will check out the others, too.

ki pha said...

LOL I know what you mean by wanting to put freely on here to show the blogs you live. There are just to many to list and sometimes you just forget an awesome blog! But I love your reading space! You at least have one while I'm dreaming of one. LOL And congrats for blogging for 4 years!

Vikk Simmons said...

Lovely reading area. I attended BEA once and it's well worth the experience, but this virtual version is equally as fun and informative. We're in for another great week.

Allison Bruning said...

LOL, not a problem. I've heard the same thing too. I want to sign books with the other authors that are there.

Words for Worms said...

I love your rationale for having TWD on your list of desert island reads. It could always be worse!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you! Blogging has certainly been rewarding so far!

Athira / Aths said...

Hope you like them! Those were all great books!

Athira / Aths said...

Exactly! I'll try to feel better by looking at what could be worse!

Athira / Aths said...

I would love to go to BEA one day, I'm glad I don't feel that yearning much now, as I did before, because I can get pretty obsessed with trying to make it work, only to find something personal come up during that week (this time, my parents just arrived in town). But, one day!

leeanna @ leeanna.me said...

I like your reading nook. The rug under the chair looks nice and fluffy.


I'm in the same boat with you as to BEA... it would be cool to go, but I could live without it now.

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you! It took a lot of struggle before getting that reading space work for me! I'm so pleased finally with it.

Athira / Aths said...

I like it when my dog parks herself under the rug and dozes off there. The reading space is working well for me.

Athira / Aths said...

Yeah, the Armchair has definitely gotten bigger. I remember that the crowd was not as big during the first Armchair BEA event. So glad to see more bloggers participating now.

Michael @ Literary Exploration said...

I love ArmchairBEA for helping me find new blogs to follow, I'm excited to see what you do in the future.

Ayanami Faerudo said...

Lovely reading spot! All that natural light!

Casual Readers said...

I noticed that your Goodreads linky doesn't work! Did you pretend to quit like many of the other bookish bloggers?

Trish said...

Unbroken would be such a motivational read when stranded. And maybe offer up a tip or two on how to imagine up a tasty meal. Such an amazing amazing story.


Your reasons are exactly mine for not really caring about going to BEA. This is more fun anyway, right? ;) Many of your favorite blogs are also my favorite!

Lisa said...

I know, right? Like, maybe, St. Patrick's day, just because it is AROUND when I am supposed to celebrate and all!

Lindsey Stefan said...

Your reading corner looks so lovely! Man, with two little kids, my bookish hideout would not look like that for long!!

Joy Weese Moll said...

Welcome back, Athira! That does look like a nice reading place -- sometimes the best spaces just come together.

Have a great week with Armchair BEA!

Freda Mans said...

I love your name, it's very pretty. Nice getting to know you and I follow via GFC now too.

Cici said...

It is so hard for me to remember my blogiversary! Glad it isn't just me! :) I love your reading space! It looks inviting!

Tea Time with Marce said...

Aths, I completely missed all the posts for BEA, sigh. Yesterday was a holiday here, Bermuda Day and I wasn't on at all plus I guess last week was more stressful than I realised, now did I miss this, lol.


Love your nook, well done, having it completed after moving. I do remember some of your favourite books. Enjoy the week.

ebookclassics said...

Hmm ... I probably should have picked the Harry Potter series instead of War and Peace to take to the desert island since I haven't read any of the books yet. I love the movies, though! How are you enjoying the books you are reading now? I read the Joy Luck Club years ago, but don't think I've read anything else by Amy Tan.

Chrizette said...

Love your selection for the deserted island, especially considering the zombie threat is not over :)

Athira / Aths said...

Yeah! That's a good one. The other option is pick a day about a week after your favorite blogger's blogiversary date. That way, when said blogger posts all the celebration posts, I'll get a tada moment and start prepping my own. LOL!

Athira / Aths said...

That's my favorite aspect of Armchair BEA too!

Athira / Aths said...

Sitting at home in your PJs, surrounded by family, eating home-cooked food, browsing blogs online - what could be better! Armchair BEA is certainly better! :)

Athira / Aths said...

Don't worry - I have a dog, and she has made it a mess many times already, so we are even, haha!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you! I hope you have fun too!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you for the kind words! :)

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you so much! I like it too!

Athira / Aths said...

Thank you so much, Marce!


You can still jump right in - no pressure. Would love to see your posts!

Athira / Aths said...

I finished Joy Luck Club today and it was nice, but I didn't love it much, mainly because I was listening to it and couldn't keep some of the characters straight in my head. As for The Girl With all the Gifts, it's quite intriguing! It's dystopian, which I enjoy sometimes, but it's uncannily similar to Walking Dead, so I'm a little cautious at this point. Have you read it?

Athira / Aths said...

Haha! I know, right!

Lisa said...

Oh my goodness! That is an amazing idea!

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

That chair looks SUPER comfy!!

Athira / Aths said...

It sure is! :-)

Bryan G. Robinson said...

I'm with everyone else, about the reading corner. That looks like an amazing place to read. I just have an old couch. I'm so jealous. :)

Athira / Aths said...

Haha, don't be. It took me ages to get that chair. So until this January, I was also looking at everyone's chairs and drooling. But hey, I still lounge on my couch and that's my second favorite place in the house!