Shelf Awareness

When I was encouraged by a librarian friend of mine (hi, Emily!) to apply for this gig, I had no idea I’d still be doing it five years down the line. My favorite part is interviewing authors about their books, their lives and their craft, but I also love getting to read books from favorite and newly-discovered authors before books come out in stores. I get a little thrill each time I hit a book store and can point to a half-dozen or so on the shelves and say, proudly, “I reviewed that!”

Here are a few of my favorite reviews and interviews for Shelf Awareness.

  • Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie – a brilliant hard sf novel that went on to become a Nebula award-winner. I was taken by the incredibly well-thought out world- and culture-building. The rest of the series continues to impress, too.
  • Langdon Cook: Mushroom Mystique – this fascinating look at the little-known world of commercial mushroom pickers was the gateway to my obsession with foraging for mushrooms in my own backyard, and this interview was super fun to complete.
  • James Lee Burke: The Benefits of a Classical Education – getting to interview this formidably intelligent author is a highlight of my time at Shelf Awareness. Burke is gracious and direct with a deep-thinking ranchers’ sensibility that informs every one of his novels.
  • Buddy Guy: No Regrets – interviewing this legend of blues music was a fanboy moment come true. Guy, like Herbie Hancock, is a virtuoso of his own brand of music, but he was gracious and gentle and kind throughout the chat. What a beautiful man.
  • Andy Weir: Mars or Bust – yes, THAT Andy Weir. This was before his book became an Academy Award-winning film by Ridley Scott, and Weir was a fun, engaging, nerdy guy that impressed me with his smarts and charm. Go Andy!