Interview with Catherine Lorraine

We’d like to welcome, indieBRAG Reader Catherine Lorraine to talk with us today about her reading! 

Catherine, what is important about reading for you?

Reading is a very important part of my life…I read to relax and to get away from everyday stress.   I read to learn and escape to exotic places. Even though I read many books in a year…..I usually only read before going to bed, sometimes on week-ends and when I am going to appointments where I have to wait.

Do you enjoy reading for BRAG and what positive experiences have had? 

I like to read for BRAG as this gives me a chance to read books I might never have found on my own. I have found a few new favourites and have become a fan always waiting for that next book.  BRAG also challenges me to read books I might have never picked up to read and I have been excited by a few books that I have read.  I also am a fan of Indie Authors….I am so glad that they have found a way to publish their books without the help of big publishers.  I must admit that a few years ago I didn’t even know what an Indie book was but since then I have read so many of them and feel grateful to have found them. I like to share my finds with other readers as I know they will be as thrilled with the books as I am.

Is there a topic you would like writers to write more about? If so, what are they and why.

I am not sure that I have a topic that I would like writers to write more about…just that whatever they choose that it is something that excites them…because I think that comes across in their writing. If they are choosing an era like the Tudors…just make sure that your book is not a clone of something else out there.  Give it a new angle, a different twist…… something that will get me interested in your book.

Talk about some of the great bookish gifts you have gotten over the years for have given to others.

mmm-cookiesI can’t remember books that were given to me…I do remember though that most of what I have read when younger have come from school or public libraries.  I was and still am a picky reader and prefer to pick out my own books.  I like to get gift cards for books and then choose from my long list that I keep of books I would like to read.

I like to give books to children as I think it is the start of their love of reading. I like to pick reading books rather than picture books with only a little writing.  My hope is that parents will sit and read with their child from a very young age…though sometimes I am saddened to find that this doesn’t happen to many. I like Dr. Seuss, Little Critters, The Berenstain Bears and Robert Munsch just to name a few. I also like story books with maybe a small message…but I am not fond of books that the total part is to learn…like math, science, etc.  I want reading to be more fun and less like school. I give books a lot at Christmas to my grandchildren and nieces and nephews and love to read to them.

Who or what inspired your love of books.

I am not sure where I got my love of reading from but I do know why I like series books.  When I was in elementary school my favourite books were The Bobbsey Twins, Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys.  One day the Librarian said to me…that I needed to broaden what I read…so no more series books.  Well I did broaden out what I read at school…but I went to the public library at least once a week to take out more of the series books.  Though I am sure she would laugh at this now…I actually thought I was having one over on her.  LOL This has stuck with me…I like books that are a series and also once I find an author I like; I try to read all of their books.  I am very loyal to my favourite authors.

What are your favorite books you have received at Christmas time?

I cannot remember a favourite book I got for Christmas…but if anyone asks what I want…I always say books…and I have a list if they need it!

What are the reasons why you love reading or writing?

I love to read but not really sure why.  Maybe it is because I am not a writer, but I so appreciate that others can put their thoughts to words.  That is a gift. Reading is just a part of me and sometimes I wish I had more time to read.  So many books…so little time!

Favorite places to read.

My favourite place to read isn’t that interesting…I love to read in bed and can’t go to sleep without reading at least a few chapters. I would like to try reading on a beach somewhere though…with a lounge chair, an awesome view, an umbrella for shade and of course a fruity drink to go with it!  (That’s on my bucket list)

My favourite books and authors of this year:
Four Nails by G. J. Berger


The Seventy-Four: Under Admiralty Orders – The Oliver Quintrell Series – Book 5 by Margaret Muir



A Traitor’s Fate by Derek Birks



The Tinker’s Daughter by Stuart S. Laing



On The Account by Helen Hollick


My list for favourite books and writers could go on…as there are so many great Indie books out there…you just have to find them and that is a great part of IndieBRAG.  A great place to find very special books.

Helen Hollick, Derek Birks , Stuart S. Laing and Margaret Muir are all writers that tug at my heart as they write sensational series of books.  I wait very patiently for the next adventure that they have for me.

Four Nails is a book that totally surprised me.  I knew very little about Hannibal and this book kept my interest from start to finish.  Ashoka and his elephant Four Nails had me up very late as I just wanted more of the book.  A wonderful read!

What does Christmas time mean to you and your family?

Christmas time to me means family.  It doesn’t matter where I am I always want to connect with my family.  Sometimes that has just been over the phone when I could not be with them…but we always connected no matter what.  Traditions are also so important to me and over the years many traditions have disappeared from our family…but I am the one that seems to keep many of them.  I learned to make Christmas fruitcake from a very early age…and continue on my Mother’s tradition.  Now I just need to find that someone from the next generation to continue this on one day.

What is the Christmas book you recommend? And why?

skipping-christmasMy favourite book to recommend for the Christmas season is Skipping Christmas by John Grisham.  To me it gives new meaning to how important traditions are…..but also how to put everything you do in our frenetic life into perspective.  It also shows the importance of family and friends.  To anyone that is having an overly busy time at Christmas…….this book is for them.  (and I have actually lent my book to others to read as Christmas nears)

What is your wish-list of books you would love for gifts under the tree?

My wish list for books is always very long…as I am always finding great writers that I want to read.

Here is what I would buy if I got a BIG gift card for books for Christmas:

The Emperor of Babylon (The Orfeo Saga # 2) by Murray Lee Eiland Jr.

The Whistler by John Grisham

The Queen’s Vow: A Novel of Isabella of Castile by CW Gortner

The Winter Palace: A Novel of Catherine the Great by Eva Strachniak

The Spider and the Stone by Glen Craney

The Golden Dice by Elisabeth Storrs

Knight of Jerusalem and Defender of Jerusalem by Helena P. Schrader

Rosings and Wickham by Karen Aminadra

The Second Blast of the Trumpet by Marie Macpherson

South of Burnt Rocks West of the Moon by G J Berger

The Field of Swords (emperor #3)
The Gods of War (Emperor #4)
Conqueror (Emperor #5)
Ravenspur  byConn Iggulden

What are your favorite Christmas party games?

Christmas Party games are not really a family thing…but if I was choosing one it would be Apples to Apples , Scattegories or Funglish.


What is your favorite Christmas film?

white-christmasFavourite Christmas movies are just about any movie with the theme Christmas.  I like to watch whatever comes on TV during the few months before Christmas.  They are always usually light and most of the time come with a happy ending……….which is a good thing! My most favourite is White Christmas which I watch most years (first started watching this with my Mom many many years ago) I am not a movie crier but this one always hits me when the unit of Colonel Waverley comes to his aid when his ski resort in Vermont is failing. When he puts on his uniform to go watch the show…….and the guys come marching in……….I need a tissue for sure! Great movie!

Here are a few more of my favourites:

The Grinch that Stole Christmas (latest version)

A Christmas Carol (any version)
Miracle on 34th Street (any version)

The Snowman (1982 version)


Do you craft and make homemade cards and crafts for gifts?

I consider myself to be crafty and especially like to make cards at Christmas time. Giving cards seem to be a thing of the past…but to me cards express many things…and I like to make that perfect card for a special person.
Here are a few of my favourites:

For my Daughter and Son-in-Law


For my Grandson


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