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Sunday, 22 August 2010

Book Blogging Around The World (29) : Hampshire, England

Name : Sasha
County / Country : Hampshire, England

Welcome Sasha!

Tell us a little bit about you.
Howdy y’all! That is something I’d never ever in a billion years get away with saying as I’m a Brit who lives in a kind of insignificant village in the very, very, very, very South of England. It’s near Southampton and Portsmouth but is often overshadowed by these two rather large cities. I’m fourteen and I love reading as well as watching movies (although I’m very critical of every single film I watch), eating Oreos and procrastinating.

Tell us a little bit about your blog.
The Sweet Bonjour is a Young Adult blog that centres around most types of teen fiction. I tend to review books within the romance, fantasy, realistic fiction, comedy area. I take part in In My Mailbox and Waiting On Wednesday as well as posting reviews, interviews, guest posts and just random pieces of bookish news.

Have you ever lived anywhere else in the world?
Nope! I’ve lived in England for the fourteen years that I’ve been alive. It’s okay but I’m planning to live somewhere else in the future. New York, maybe?

What countries have you visited?
Now I think about it, I’ve visited quite a number of places. I’ve been to: Spain, France, Italy, Austria, Holland, Florida, Turkey, China and Wales. I know Wales isn’t that far away but it’s still a different country. I have a feeling I’ve been to other places as well but I can’t remember. I loved Florida! I went to Disney World and swam with dolphins which was just amazing! I also loved China because it was so different and…well it’s China! My all time favourite place was Venice. I LOVE Venice. It was so gorgeous and scenic. I’m also from Italian heritage so I guess I was destined to like it.

Street market in Shanghai

What countries would you like to visit?
Wow, there’s too many to count. Let’s start with Japan, Thailand, India, Australia, Brazil, Mexico, Egypt, Lapland. I love countries where you can visit something totally different and immerse yourself in the culture. I’m not really a ‘Oh, let’s go on holiday so we can sunbathe’ kind of person. If I wanted to sunbathe, I could do it here.

According to you, what are the positive and negative aspects of being a book blogger in England?

To be honest there aren’t really any of either. Obviously I like being a blogger so I guess that’s a positive. I like chatting to other bloggers who like books as much as I do. I like talking to authors and I like getting star struck (over the internet if that’s possible) when it’s an author I love. I remember when I went to the Richelle Mead signing and that was all thanks to blogging and reading other people’s blogs. I was like ‘Omigod! It’s Richelle Mead!!’
At the Richelle Mead signing

What English authors and books would you recommend?
I actually can’t think of any English authors off the top of my head. Wow, that’s bad but down to the fact that I read a lot of books by American authors. Most of my favourite books are by American authors as well. Err, let’s see…I really like books by Luisa Plaja and Grace Dent. Julia Green is also a good author with two really awesome books that I liked. I can’t believe my mind went blank at English authors. Err, what about J.K Rowling?! Anyhoodle…

How many languages do you speak?
Just English. I am still at school so I learn French and German but am nowhere near to speaking them fluently. I’m not that good at languages to be honest but I’ll make it my mission to learn a different language one day even though I’ll just forget it all as soon as I’ve learnt it.

Where do you usually buy your books?
Usually in bookshops like Waterstones or W.H Smiths. I sometimes order things off of Amazon or online stores so I can read books that aren’t available in England yet. I’m a neat freak so all of my books have to be in pristine condition. Therefore, I probably wouldn’t buy them in a charity shop.

Is getting your hands on foreign books tricky or easy (not mentioning online stores)?
If we’re not mentioning online stores, it’s practically impossible! All of the new releases in the U.S, are extremely hard to come by without going on Amazon. On the very rare occasion that I do find a book that hasn’t been officially published in the U.K, I tend to buy it. If I ever saw something like Brightly Woven or The Iron King in a U.K store, I’d be flabbergasted!

Every country has its clichés. What cliché about England do you consider disproportionate?
After speaking to many people who live in America, they all seemed to think everyone in England lived in little thatched cottages like we did about five-hundred years ago. For anyone who thinks this, it’s most definitely not true. Not everyone in England knows each other either; there are quite a lot of people in this country.

Hampshire is famed as home of Jane Austen. If you could come back in time and meet her, what would be the first thing you would ask her?
I think I would ask her what her biggest secret was. She probably wouldn’t tell me anyway but people who want to know everything about Jane Austen, still don’t know her deepest darkest secrets. I would want to be the only person in modern day times who’d know something utterly shocking about someone as famous as Jane Austen.

Quick Q&A :
Favourite thing about living in England: Being two hours away from London!
Least favourite thing about living in England: Katie Price and Alex Reid.
Favourite typically English food: Fish & Chips
Favourite place in Hampshire: Southampton.
Favourite bookshop: Waterstones.
Favourite English author: Luisa Plaja
Favourite English singer/band: Florence + The Machine.
Favourite book to read while travelling: Perfect Chemistry
Plane or train: Plane
Boat or bus: : Bus
Bike or feet: Bike
I don’t particularly like tea.
I hate pickled onions, but love ice cream. Nomnom!

Thank you Sasha! It was a pleasure having you up on the hill!
Next week we'll be traveling to Indonesia!
If you'd like to be featured, this post is for you.


  1. Oh Shanghai! My current home :)

  2. What a fun interview. I'm simply itching to try some English Fish and Chips :)

  3. Cool interview.
    Hello from SoFlo.

  4. Fun little interview. I like fish & chips, too (must be all the English genes in me)! :)

  5. Super fun! Happy Birthday, Sasha, and good luck getting to NYC some day!

  6. Hi Sasha, happy birthday!

    Waterstone's is my favorite book shop too and I don't even live in England (I did, for a long time, but now I live in the Netherlands). Do you know Tesco also sell a good selection of current books? They're 2 for 1 at the moment.

  7. Very interesting. Whenever I think of good writers, my list includes only British authors. Americans are bland by comparison and have contributed nothing by comparison. And I speak as an American. Lewis Carroll is at the top of my list. O, Frabjous Day! Please visit my blog and leave a comment. Thanks!

  8. Love Reading your Blog
    Thanks for shareing helpfull information



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