Friday, 2 September 2016

Getting To Know...Claire Knight

Claire Knight with the fab author C.L. Taylor

Today on Getting To Know... I am asking my questions of Claire Knight, reviewer on the fabulous blog Crime Book Junkie.

You review books on Crime Book Junkie, has crime fiction always been your favourite genre or do you love other genres too?

I have read crime fiction on and off for as long as I can remember; I grew up reading The Famous Five, Secret Seven and then progressed onto Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys.  I developed a love for the real crime novels reading about the moors murders and taking an interest in the post mortem process reading Michael Baden’s Unnatural Death over and over again. I had a brief obsession with chick lit but then fell back in love with crime fiction when Mark Billingham released Sleepyhead.  I still do read other genres but crime is possibly my joint favourite with psychological thrillers.

Do you have a favourite author?

That’s like asking if I have a favourite child!! There are so many to choose from that I could be here till Christmas making a decision as I’d keep changing my mind.

Do you have a particular way that you organise your bookshelves or is it a free for all (like mine are right now)?

My bookshelves are a mess.  Two years ago when I found out I was pregnant, I had to have a clear out of my books because our spare room aka my library was to become the new nursery.  But since then, I’ve won books or been sent them by lovely authors or publishers.  I was at this year’s Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival in Harrogate and each day, I came back with a stack of books….so there are now piles of books scattered around the house that need to be homed!

A toughie for a reader - e-books, paperbacks or hardbacks?

I am a covert to the e-books.  Before my husband bought me a kindle, I was a staunch physical copy reader preferring paperbacks to hardbacks (they’re lighter after all).  But having a kindle has introduced me to so many new authors such as Mel Sherratt, Caroline Mitchell, Mel (M A) Comley.  These authors are one you probably wouldn’t find browsing in Waterstones so it’s a whole new set of authors that I’m exposed to and I love discovering new authors

Other than reading, do you have any other hobbies?

With two children, working four days a week and a house to look after, I don’t have much time.  I do like to watch TV and go shopping with friends.  

How many books do you read in a year? Do you set yourself an annual goal?

Last year I read 96 books but I did spend the first 8 months on maternity leave, In January I targeted 52 books (one a week) given I was going back to work so I couldn’t read as much as I did last year, but I’ve got a feeling I might hit that well before the end of the year as I’ve already hit 49.

What was your favourite book or series when you were growing up?

I think I read every Enid Blyton book going and then moved onto the likes of Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys and Lois Duncan’s thrillers. But then is there any 80/90s girl who didn’t read Judy Blume or the Sweet Valley books – not so much crime but a rite of passage.

Do you have a favourite place to read?

Anywhere – in the car, on the sofa, in the garden, in bed…I’ve even been spotted reading at my desk or waiting for my husband outside of work particularly when the story has got me hook line and sinker and I’m desperate to finish it.

As you enjoy crime fiction, do you also enjoy watching crime series or crime documentaries on tv?

I prefer the crime drama series but I’m not averse to a documentary.  My recent favourite have been The Fall, Marcella, Death In Paradise, Sherlock, Daredevil.  I really want to find time to watch Making a Murderer

Have you been lucky enough to meet any authors?

Oh yes!! Apologies for the name drops but….. As I mentioned, I was at the Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival this year and I met a fair few authors such as Sarah Hilary, Clare Mackintosh, Mark Edwards, Jenny Blackhurst, Cally (C.L) Taylor and Tara Lyons to name but a few – in the signing tent, I met Mark Billingham, Ruth Ware, Beth Lewis and Dr Brooke Magnanti (aka Belle De Jour).  Also I am a member of THE Book Club on Facebook which organises regular get togethers in various locations around the UK; in February I was lucky enough to meet Steven Dunne, Graham Smith, Col Bury, Rita Brassington, Sarah Louise Jamson and David Videcette.  I’ve been to a few book signings, meeting Peter Robinson, Kimberley Chambers and Stuart MacBride. 

Thank you so much to Claire for answering my questions! 

To connect with Claire or check out her reviews

Twitter @ClaireK01959448
Crime Book Junkie website
Crime Book Junkie Facebook page

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