Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Meet the Book Blogger: Ashley

Let's give a warm welcome to Ashley from WHOLLY BOOKS. She lives in small town Alabama, and is the creator of the blog, where she shares her love of books with readers equally passionate about the written word. I'm going to get right to the interview so you can get to know her.

When and how did you get started with book blogging?
I first started blogging about a year ago but I didn’t get serious about it until about May of 2012.

What can readers expect from your reviews?
I like to focus my reviews on how the books made me feel because in the end that’s what determines how much I enjoyed a book. If your book didn’t make me feel anything, most likely I didn’t love it. I also try to tell what I thought about the characters and plot and give reasons why. I don’t give summaries in my reviews because I always have the summary above. I try very hard not to give spoilers but I’m sure sometimes it happens accidentally. I try to write reviews the way I like to read them. Readers (hopefully) get well written reviews that state how I felt about a book backed up with evidence why. Hopefully, that adds up to an entertaining review.

I'm so impressed with all the interviews so far, how much you all put into your reviews, and all you offer to readers. Thank you!

What is your favorite genre and is there anything you won’t review?
I love YA. When I was younger (early teens) I read a lot of crime suspense novels. Two of my favorite authors were John Grisham and Alex Kava. Once I got into my later teens reading was put on the back burner. Now, I read almost exclusively YA. I do read some Urban Fantasy.

I have also been enjoying more YA these days. Especially the dystopian worlds.

Where is your favorite place to read?
Somewhere quiet. If it’s cool I like to read outside. The other place I like read is in my bedroom.

Paper books or ebooks— and why?
It depends. I really like reading ebooks especially if I’m laying out at the beach. However, I like having physical copies of books too. I like being able to look at them and have them around. When it comes to physical books I prefer hardcover if it’s available.

Many book bloggers are also writers—are you? 
I am an aspiring writer. Nothing published yet but I do have something I’m working on so maybe one day you’ll get a chance to see it on the shelf!

Ashley, that'd be great! If you love the writing, keep at it and someday you will have it on the shelf next to all the books you've reviewed.

What is your favorite kind of M&M’s?

I'm with  you on that choice. :) Plus the new seasonal White Chocolate Peppermint M&Ms.

What is the most challenging part of book blogging? Rewarding? 
Having time to get everything done! I feel like I’m constantly behind. The most rewarding part is knowing that there are other people reading my blog and my reviews. I love reading comments/emails saying that they enjoy reading what I think. It’s mind-blowing to me that other people listen to what I say!

Time-we'd all love more. I saw on the blog you've added a couple part-time reviewers, Kristen and Kaci. Hopefully that frees you up some for more reading and your own writing.

Can you share with us up to 5 authors who are auto-buy for you?
I don’t have too many authors that are auto-buy. The only one I can really think of is Julie Kagawa. I have loved every single book she has written!

How much is too much for an ebook?
I’ll admit I don’t like paying a lot for an ebook. I typically only buy ebooks of books that go on sale for .99, $1.99, or $2.99. I have bought a couple of ebooks at regular price but if I wanted the next book in a series but didn’t want to go to the store and buy it.

My thing is if the ebook and print book are about the same price why not go ahead and buy the one that can sit pretty on my shelf, ya know?

Also, I’ve always thought it would be a good idea to have a print/ebook combo pack priced a few dollars more than the print. Kind of like they do with DVDs/Digital.

Good idea. As an author, I certainly wouldn't be adverse to that.

Do you know how many books currently reside on your To Be Read list?
Last time I checked it was around 50 or so, plus whatever I haven’t read on my Kindle.

You can find Ashley at:

Thanks so much for spending time with me and my readers, Ashley! I wish you continued enjoyment on the blog and with your own writing.
Readers...your turn. Anything you'd like to ask Ashley?


  1. Hello, Ashley! I have another question...hopefully you don't mind...

    Being from Alabama, are you a fan of the CW show Hart of Dixie with Rachel Bilson? (and of course Scott Porter and Wilson Bethel)

    1. Hey Stacey! Thanks again for having me on your blog! I really enjoyed it! As far as the show Hart of Dixie, I did watch one episode when it first came on because I loved Rachel Bilson from the show The OC. I did like it but never started watching it regularly. Honestly, I don't have time for too much TV between work, blogging, and my 4 year old son. Plus, my 4 year old pretty much dominates the TV. The only shows I watch consistently are The Vampire Diaries and Grey's Anatomy and that's only because I have them set up to automatically be DVR'ed and then watch them after my son goes to sleep. Unfortunately, my son is a night owl like his mom and that usually means I don't get to watch them until after midnight!

    2. I definitely understand keeping busy. :) That's why I didn't let myself get into TVD. I liked Grey's at first, but stopped watching a few years ago.

      And you're welcome for having you on--I had fun, too. :)

  2. Hey girls, great Q&A! It was great to meet you Ashley, and get to know you. I like your process by which you review a book. The heart of the review being how the book leaves you feeling. So true! We've closed books and walked away floating on air. Closed them and felt scared! Closed them and felt angry, questioning... But I think if it arouses any of these feelings...the writer has done his/her job. We just followed your blog "Wholly Books" and look forward to pulling some title recommendations from your site as well as keeping up with you in hopes that we will hear soon, that your done with your book and we can add that to our collection. Best of luck Ashley, and great job Stacey!

    1. Thanks so much for the kind words! I also appreciate your support! I hope you enjoy reading my blog and find some great new books!

  3. Sorry to be so late in here Stacey and Ashley. Great interview, Stacey, and nice to meet you, Ashley. Since you're an aspiring writer, Ashley, is what you're learning taking away any of your enjoyment of reading? I know since I've been published I find myself critiquing everything.

    1. I wouldn't say it takes away from my enjoyment. I do find myself sometimes being critical but I think I always have been. Usually what happens is that I learn how to make my book better by reading books. If Im not loving a book, I know not to make the same mistakes in mine. If I'm loving it, it gives me something to strive for and helps me gain more insight into what it takes to write a great novel.