Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
This month’s featured book blogger is Caroline Donahue from The Book Doctor. Caroline is a life coach who tailors custom book lists to propel her clients’ growth. She authors an email newsletter called Footnotes. Caroline also has a special section of her website called “The Secret Library” where subscribers can access ebooks she writes especially for her online community.
Welcome, Caroline! First of all, tell us a little bit about yourself. What are some of your interests outside of blogging?
Thank you so much for having me! Where to begin on the interests… reading would top the list, obviously. One of the things I love most about being a reader is that it allows me to have as many interests as I like–I can just read a different book. I am a photographer as well, and do all my own images for the blog and my site, which I love doing. I’m a knitter and sewer, and love learning languages. So far I speak English and decent French. I took German in high school and am studying it again since I’m getting married in October and will be in Berlin for a big part of my honeymoon.
What is your Myers-Briggs Type?
I’m an INFJ and I really relate to it. When I was first tested, in my teens, I got INFP and connected with that, but I think I’ve really been an INFJ all along.
How did you discover the blogging world and what made you decide to start a blog of your own?
I first started blogging ten years ago. I had just finished photography school and was about to drive cross country from Maine to move to LA. My boyfriend at the time was a programmer and encouraged me to start a blog since I loved writing. I named it Remabulous, a word I made up when I was six that means remarkable and fabulous. At first, it was a travel blog about my trip cross country and then, once I arrived, I transitioned into blogging about how artists could market themselves online. I had a coaching business under Remabulous until 2008 and then the economy shut me down. I took a couple of years off to recover and then, in 2013 or 14 I missed it and decided to make my constant book recommendations into a blog. I always wanted to have an advice column, so that’s how it started. It’s expanded into reviews now and topics related to coaching. I am so happy to be back in this space again. It feels like my home online.
I hate it when people ask me what my favorite book is–such an impossible question! So give us your top five…or ten.
It’s true! It’s so hard to pick just a few. I wrote an eBook for the Footnotes readers that’s called 52 Books That Will Change Your Life, and even then it was hard to narrow it to 52. I was swapping books in and out until the last minute. I already have a new list of the next 52 going, since I read A Little Life after the eBook came out and it was an all-encompassing reading experience for me. I also recently read Esmé Weijun Wang’s debut novel Border of Paradise, and it was a total knockout. I doubt I’ll ever forget either of them. For warm fuzzies, I’ve just finished Enchanted April for about the hundredth time–I either read or listen to the audiobook almost every April. I love the movie as well. And Room with a View has been a similar favorite since I was in high school.
Time for some either/or…
PC or Mac? Mac all the way.
Coffee or tea? Lately tea, but I definitely love both.
Austen or Brontë? Austen.
Fiction or nonfiction? Usually one of each, simultaneously and an audiobook, too. I can keep them separate that way.
Hogwarts or Middle-earth? Hogwarts. I want to read LOTR, but it always feels like too overwhelming an undertaking.
If you could visit any country in the world for a year, where would you go?
All of them? Do I get to say that? Lately, I’m feeling a pull to both Berlin for a year or the UK–either Edinburgh or a smaller city in England. I love all three of those places.
[bctt tweet=”Q&A with #BookBlogger @the_book_dr: Her favorite #books, movies, tv shows, & more! | @parchmentgirl37″ via=”no”]
Name two famous people, living or dead, you would most like to meet and why.
Marcel Duchamp is first. I wrote my college thesis in Art History on him and I have been smitten ever since. I love the way Dada challenged the status quo and how every interview with him contradicts the ones before. I’d love to hear what he really was thinking about his art, if he was willing to tell me. Second, Gustave Caillebotte. I have loved his painting my whole life and he seemed to be just on the edge of the impressionist group. I’d love to hear his side of the story of that period and the changes happening then. There are many more, but those two feel close to my heart.
If you had to choose three books you think everyone should read, what would they be and why?
First would be Start Where You Are by Pema Chödrön because she’s incredible. I’d love to meet her as well. I think this book has allowed me to keep a little breathing room even in a crisis and that is a skill that would serve anyone. Second, I think If On A Winter’s Night a Traveler by Calvino. It totally blows apart the fiction convention and I just adore it. You’ll either love it or hate it, in my experience, but everyone should give it a shot. And finally, Freddy and Fredericka by Mark Helprin. It’s the only book that has made me laugh so hard I snotted on myself in a café reading and then later made me cry. Again, it’s pretty quirky, but I knew I’d met the right guy when he read it and loved it as much as I did.
Lightning round! Name your favorite…
Song: Totally depends on my mood. “Time After Time” by Cyndi Lauper always gets sung at full volume in the car, though. So good!
Movie: Room with a View.
TV show: Downton Abbey and Game of Thrones, a tie at the moment. But I must give a shout out to Buffy.
Comfort food: French fries. I never met a potato I didn’t like.
Celebrity crush: Tie as well–Stanley Tucci and Idris Elba.