Saint or sinner??? It’s confession time..


I saw this “Nice or Naughty?” tag at FictionFan’s blog and thought it made a refreshing break from shopping, parcel wrapping, cooking etc etc etc.  I will leave, the jury, to decide whether I’m a saint or a sinner……

So here are the questions..

1. Received an ARC and not reviewed it?

I plead guilty. I try hard not to accept books for review if I don’t think I have the time but occasionally my halo has slipped. Everytime I see those unread books on the shelves I suffer waves of guilt.

2. Got less than 60% feedback rating on NetGalley? 

Not guilty. I’m close to it though since my current rating is 63%. I got over enthusiastic a few years ago and requested far too many books so the rating slipped from 90%. I’ve done much better this year by the simple strategy of not requesting any books for about nine months of the year.  I just closed my eyes whenever an email came through from NetGalley ….

3. Rated a book on Goodreads and promised a full review was to come on your blog (and never did)?

Not guilty, I don’t like rating systems. I add one to my Goodreads account but don’t set much store by them.

4. Folded down the page of a book?

dog earedGuilty.   I did this once on a flight when I didn’t have anything to hand I could use as a bookmark. I was reading Crime and Punishment by Dostoevsky and found so many passages I wanted to note that I ran out of objects I could use as bookmarks. I’d already used my boarding card, the paper towel and the drinks coaster.


5. Accidentally spilled on a book?

Not guilty as far as I can remember. And I’m sure I would remember….. But then white wine or champagne wouldn’t be that noticeable. Those bubbly bits on the page — they’re just water marks aren’t they?

6. DNF a book this year?

I’ve long passed the stage where I keep pushing on to the end of novels I’m not enjoying but I’m surprised to find I have only one novel I couldn’t finish this year.   I abandoned
G by John Berger. It was one of the books on my Booker Prize project list but a more dull book it would be hard to envisage.

I might come close to another DNF before the end of the year. I started reading The Librarian by Salley Vickers last night (this is the next book club selection) and am not at all taken with the narrative tone.

So yes I plead guilty m’lord.

7. Bought a book purely because it was pretty with no intention of reading it?

Not guilty. Despite a plethora of magazine articles and Instagram pictures suggesting otherwise, books are not meant to be decorative items. They are meant to be read. Repeat after me……

8. Read whilst you were meant to be doing something else (like homework)?

Guilty. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve been engrossed in a book when I should have been sleeping. Or reading when I should have been getting ready to go to the gym.

9. Skim read a book?

Not this year though in the past I’ve been known to just glance at books given as work assignments, about the latest business theory… usually the skimming takes place on the trip to the meeting with all fingers and toes crossed that no-one asks any deep and searching questions. Now this is just between you and me right???

10. Completely missed your Goodreads goal?

Guilty this year even though I set the goal lower than its been for about 5 years. When I was in full time employment I used to dream of days when I could just sit at home and read. And now I’m retired and can, I somehow never get around to reading in the daytime. 2018 will see me reader fewer books than I have for many years.

11. Borrowed a book and not returned it to the library?

Completely innocent on this one. I do however forget the date when the books are due back at the library so end up with a fine….

12. Broken a book buying ban?

Wish I could plead innocent on this but it’s not to be. I tried a ban last year and lasted a few months. But before I could wipe the self-satisfied smug look on my face, I happened to go into a bookshop. You can get guess the rest can’t you? This year the total of my owned-but not read- books is higher at the end of the year than it was at the beginning. How did that happen?

13. Started a review, left it for ages then forgot what the book was about?

Oh dear. I have to come clean on this one. Some books are difficult to review so yes I might put one aside intending to return to it when the inspiration returns. And then forget it….

14. Written in a book you were reading?

I know this makes me persona non grata in certain circles but yes I have done this with books I’m studying for a course. It’s called active reading.

15. Finished a book and not added it to your Goodreads?

I use  Goodreads to help keep track of what I’ve read but I also have a spreadsheet and a page on this blog. Keeping them all in synch is a challenge. So yes, guilty on this count.

16. Borrowed a book and not returned it to a friend?

Nope, my friends don’t enjoy the same kind of books I enjoy so I don’t borrow from them.

17. Dodged someone asking if they can borrow a book?

No, though I know the chances of actually getting it returned are almost non existent.

18. Broken the spine of someone else’s book?

Since I hardly ever borrow other people’s books, this is unlikely to ever occur.

19. Taken the jacket off a book to protect it and ended up making it more damaged?

Never. I don’t understand why someone wants to remove the jacket at all. The artwork of the cover is an integral part of the book surely?

20. Sat on a book accidentally?

Yes, Yes, Yes. Books will insist on turning up in the most inconvenient places…..

Having answered all questions truthfully and fully, I leave my future in your hands. Am I a saint or a sinner??


What do you need to know about me? 1. I'm from Wales which is one of the countries in the UK and must never be confused with England. 2. My life has always revolved around the written and spoken word. I worked as a journalist for nine years then in international corporate communications 3. My tastes in books are eclectic. I love realism and hate science fiction and science fantasy. 4. I am trying to broaden my reading horizons geographically by reading more books in translation

12 thoughts on “Saint or sinner??? It’s confession time..

  • I’ve broken so many of these and I’m largely unapologetic! (Particularly about writing in books – I write in nearly all of my books – mark passages, make notes, refer to other books I’m reminded of.., – I see this as ‘showing love’!

    • I just cover my books with little post it notes – trouble is they have a habit of coming unstuck. So I pick up the book and they all fall out like confetti….

  • I’d say you’re a pretty saintly as you’ve not committed my pet peeve of not returning borrowed books, everything else is forgivable. And I’ve found the safest way to never break a book-buying ban is to never have one 😉

    • I shall have to go and find a halo now – do you think they have any in the shops???

    • You never had me down as someone to avoid the difficult questions 🙂

    • Never mind, we can keep your secrets just between ourselves…

  • Oh, I think you’re nice – writing in books you’re studying for a course is perfectly acceptable, in fact it’s necessary. I’ve done it too. And of course you ‘had’ to go into that bookshop and it would have been unthinkable not to buy a book. 🙂

  • Haha – I’m sorry to say that overall I think you’ve been naughty – those are definitely wine marks, not water marks! And writing in books?? No, not even the studying excuse is good enough!! The good news is you’re also nice, and I hear Santa is being quite forgiving this year… 😉 🎅

    • Oh dear, I was afraid someone would put me in the sin bin. I shall have to find a way to atone for my sins……


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