Hi everyone! Today is the first day of Armchair BEA 2016! I'm so excited to be part of this event and I hope you all enjoy what we have prepared. To learn more about this event, visit the website and learn about the daily topics, twitter chats, Instagram challenges and giveaways!
Since today is day 1, this post will be an intro so you can get to know me a bit better and I'll also talk about Diversity in Books. I mixed today's topics in just one post since you don't have to hop around switching pages.
.....TOPIC 1: INTRODUCTION.....
What is the name you prefer to use?
Everybody calls me by my name Melissa, you can also call me Mel, Meli, or as I personally prefer, Princess Melissa de Montigny ;) (I married by favorite prince book boyfriend).
How long have you been a book blogger?
I think 4+ years now. I've been blogging on The Reader and the Chef for almost 2.5 years now, but before this, I also guest reviewed in other 2 blogs.
Have you participated in ABEA before?
Only as a reader! I tried to join last year but I didn't have time since school was taking up much of my time. But I'm glad that this year I got to join AND help organize it (at least in the International Committee).
Do you have a favorite book?
I DO. My favorite book is Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen. Actually, this is the first book in my favorite series ever. It's a book about TROLLS (some handsome, some not), magic, a curse, forced marriage/bonding, and one epic slow-burning romance. Prince Tristan de Montigny lives inside this book and he's the one I married. :D
What is your favorite genre and why?
I love Fantasy books. I love how these books are not confined by the limits of reality and take a step further into the unknown. They test my imagination and often blow me away with the creativity of the human mind. Also, fantasy books generally have book princes in them and I SO LOVE THEM.
If you could recommend one other book blogger, who would it be and why?
Jazmen from This Girl Reads A Lot. Her blog is amazing. Her book reviews are amazing. If there's anyone out there who I would trust my reading life with book recs it would totally be her.
Which day of ABEA are you looking forward to the most?
Thursday because Internationally focused twitter chat hosted (silently) by yours truly and the International Committee! Join is at 4pm GMT!
If you could create a playlist that reflects your bookshelf, what would be the first song you choose?
I dedicate this song to all the readers out there trying to get over a terrible book hangover. This song has helped ease my pain. Enjoy! It's so catchy!
.....TOPIC 1: DIVERSITY IN BOOKS.....
Diversity in books has become one of the hottest and most controversial topics in the book industry for the past couple of years. And not only in books, but in life in general. Our community has always been a diverse crowd, but we had not found our voice. Scratch that, our voice was muted and unheard of by those who wished to keep our world just black and white. What they refused to see is that our world is in fact, a beautiful array of different colors. Of shapes and sizes. Of tastes. Of personalities. Of voices.
And I know we are far away from getting to the point were diversity will be looked upon with a smiling faces and received with open arms, but we are getting there. We need to keep working hard. We need to speak louder.
As a book blogger, I try to do my part, however small it is. Not because I want to say WE NEED DIVERSE BOOKS just to be cool, but because I truly believe WE NEED DIVERSE BOOKS. Because hey, I'm a Mexican reader, I also want Mexican main characters, maybe in a book set in Mexico, possibly someone named Melissa who falls in love with a Mexican Prince (why not a Mexican fantasy?). Maybe I'll write it (ummm... MAYBE, I'm no writer).
And as it is, I also want to read more about different places. Travel the world through books and learn about different cultures. Daydream about the day when I actually get to visit those places (if they exist) in real life and connect even more with the book.
In this year only, my mind has stepped on deserts, outer space, magical worlds. swooned in the City of Lights, bonded with trolls, experienced the San Francisco earthquake through the eyes of a Chinese-American girl, befriended a Jinni, hanged out with cool LGBT kids and shipped their relationships, cheered on amazing plus sized friends, and so on. THIS YEAR ONLY. And all these reads? Amazing. And diverse. REAL. And really, really cool.
There are a few of the ones I'm telling you about:
And I even haven't made a dent to all these epic books that are coming out more frequently. Isn't that awesome? I hope you think so too. But I mean, it's also okay to keep reading what you love, whatever it is. That's the beauty of diversity. A bit of everything for everyone!
Thanks for reading :)