What is the name you prefer to use?
I go by Amanda. I have never liked nicknames thanks to being bullied in grade school. *shudders* So I go by Amanda.
In the world of the internet, I go by Amanda Marie which is my first and middle names. I don’t use my last name for a few reasons, one of which is that no one can ever pronounce it correctly.
How long have you been a book blogger?
I have been blogging for just over a year and a half. I really enjoy it more than I thought I would.
Have you participated in ABEA before?
Nope. This is my first time.
Do you have a favorite book?
You want me to pick just one?? Okay. My recent favorites (as in about the last month) have been The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater and The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi.
Do you have a favorite genre and why?
I love fantasy! This is probably because I am just looking for an excuse to escape reality. Fantasy is that escape for me.
How do you arrange your bookshelves?
Currently my fiction bookshelf is arranged by color. My non-fiction shelf (almost all Catholic books) is arranged by topic. I might change my fiction shelf up when I next get bored and want something to do. I am thinking of alphabetical maybe.
What book are you most excited for on your TBR? What are you most intimidated by?
I am looking forward to Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton. The book I keep putting off is Stars Above by Marissa Meyer because I don’t want The Lunar Chronicles to really be over.
My thoughts on diversity in books:
As for diversity in books, we definitely need that. Most of the books on my bookshelf feature white characters of Western European descent. Even most of the fantasy shows us fair-skinned heroes and heroines.
One of the first fantasy series I read was Tamora Pierce’s Circle of Magic quartet. These books prominently feature characters of other backgrounds. Daja and Frostpine have very dark skin. Daja is judged for her skin because of its color and the person it marks her to be. However, Sandy doesn’t let that stigma stop her from being friends with Daja. One of my favorite quotes of the series (I actually copied it out the first time I read the book in grade school!) is when Sandy pulls rank in the dining hall and tells everyone she doesn’t care what they think.
“Lady Daja is my guest.”
“If that’s a lady, I’m a cat.”
“I am Sandrilene fa Toren, daughter of Count Mattin fer Toren and his countess, Amiliane fa Landreg. I am the great-niece of his grace, Duke Vedris of this realm of Emelan, and cousin of her Imperial Highness, Empress Berenene of the Namorn Empire. You are Esmelle ei Pragin, daughter of Baron Witten en Pragin and his lady Colledia of House Wheelwright – a merchant hosue. If I tell you that my friend is a lady, then you had best start lapping, kitty.”
There is more than just skin color diversity. There is also cultural diversity. Some of my favorite books in non-Western settings are The Wrath and the Dawn and The Star-Touched Queen. They both have rather similar settings and culture but, what can I say, I’ve always wanted to visit India.