Armchair BEA 2013: Development + Genre fiction

Armchair BEA

Day 2:  Development

Day 1 was a total blast for me with Introductions.

Day 2 we talk about how we develop ourselves as bloggers.  Have you branched out into your community? Do you partner with other bloggers?  Have you gone “pro” or begun supplementing your income through your blog?”


Branching out:

* Little by little, I started being part of Reading Challenges and memes. And then I launched my own reading challenge [click on the banner here]:

Books on France

It has had 30 readers signed up, for its first year, so I’m very happy. I wished more people were taking part in my weekly meme:

I Love France

where you can post about anything French, books or not. But I’m not posting faithfully on it every week…

* Since my book blog was born, outside the blogosphere I launched a book club for my block. We have been meeting monthly for a year and a half. We trade titles, that is, instead of all reading the same book, we share about the book we read since our last meeting. We are about 10, men and women, we love it!

* My dream is to meet face to face with local book bloggers, we are several in the same Chicagoland. Hopefully I will soon meet with Under the Apple Tree, a great book blogger and birder – books and birds are my 2 passions. Have you ever seen her gorgeous bird pictures? Please go visit.

Income and “pro”:

* I signed up with WordAds, but as you may know, that’s pretty slow. Hopefully I will finally get something out of it in 2014. It should cover the cost of shipping books for giveaways.

* Much more importantly, I just recently launched

France Book Tours Banner

France Book Tours: virtual book tours for books having some type of connection with France, which has little by little become a kind of niche for my book blog.  I am very happy, as 10 books are already signed up!
The fees are very affordable for authors, and there are great perks for book bloggers. Do you mind going having a look if that would be something good for you? And if you could even subscribe through email to it, that would be awesome! Thanks!

* If you go and visit, do you mind giving me some feedback, and advice on how to improve? Thanks again for your visit today!



As for the genre, sorry I do not have too much time to write a separate post, I can say that book blogging has definitely opened my reading horizon: I am reading lots of historical fiction now, and some YA from time to time, both genres that I was not reading too much before book blogging.

Why historical fiction? I enjoy the way an author builds a story on an important background job of serious and accurate information. So in that sense, I enjoy the mix of reality and fiction.

Now I can hardly resist any new HF, and my problem is that there are too many good ones coming out every month.

There are the famous ones, by Hilary Mantel of course and others, but there are lots of original ones, more obscure. I would like to highlight 2 I read recently, less known, but very good in their writing and original. Click on the covers to access my reviews:

Chronicle of the Mount Builde Syncopation


53 thoughts on “Armchair BEA 2013: Development + Genre fiction

  1. I actually discovered YA through blogging. When I first started my blog , it wasn’t specifically for YA Fiction but as the blog progressed it seem to lean more and more towards it. Nowadays I would say it is predominantly YA. I still read other genres but that seems to be where we have found our niche. Enjoy the rest of ArmchairBEA 🙂


  2. Probably the most important thing you’ve done is build a niche for yourself – France. That will bring you a dedicated following of like minded readers. And I admire you courage of starting up memes and whatnot. Way to go!!


    • Thanks Tanya for visiting and for your comment. I know the ‘niche’ is the big thing. Glad I came up with France Book Tours, so that I can also keep reading/posting all kinds of other things here. I love your blog, now following you, and I just dropped a few comments


  3. I agree, I have discovered more genres to read than what I was reading before I started blogging. Some bloggers’ reviews just make me want to READ ALL THE BOOKS!

    I need to check out your French meme, even if I don’t read in French very often, I know I should. And I prefer reading in original language, so you just might have some really good recommendations for me 🙂

    Happy reading, and happy Armchair BEA.


    • actually most of the books I feature are not in French. it’s not that easy to get new books in French in the US, unless you have lots of money to buy them online, I don’t. but the classics are available: I’m reading In Search of Lost Time by Proust in French this year, trying the whole of it, as it’s the anniversary year of publication of the 1st volume (Swann’s Way).
      Zola might be easier to read in French, or Jules Verne, depends on your level


  4. Thanks for this. V interesting to see what you’re up to. And to discover your affinity for books and France (being as I now live in France!). I’m signing up… I think your dream should be to meet face to face with book bloggers in France!!! Now that would be cool. And I’m already up for it. Just let me know where and when :0)


    • actually I meant first around Chicago, where I live, BUT I’m planning my next trip to France, and I am definitely going to get in touch with some book bloggers there. Unfortunately, I have already presented Strasbourg and Alsace to my husband, so I don’t think I’ll go back there soon. but who knows, I love Strasbourg’s cathedral, and les tartes flambées!


  5. That is so great that you started your own memes and reading challenges! I struggle to get to the 2 a week I do. Historical fiction is also my favorite. BTW- I am reading the second in a series set in France-sort of mystery- It is called The Crypt Thief by Mark Pryor-the first was The Bookseller which I really loved.


  6. Hey – so interesting to hear how you came to be blogging about books. I find that because of book blogging, I read a lot more YA books, but I think I’m getting a bit burned out on that now, and I’m re-discovering a love of mysteries.


    • thanks, blogging has definitely made me more flexible and open genre-wise. I liked your post on planning, but could not find your posts themselves for Armchair BEA yesterday and today


  7. If you enjoy historical fiction, I highly recommend Lust for Life by Irving Stone. (The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone is also great, but Lust for Life is one of my favorite books!).


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  9. I love the way your book club works – sounds like you must get some great book recommendations from it.

    Like you, I’ve gotten really into historical fiction since blogging. While I don’t tend to read too many books set in France, I’m off to check out your France Book Tours…how awesome that you started it on your own. That’s something I would love to do one day!

    My Blogger Development
    My Genre Fiction post


    • thanks for your comment. The trading titles book club is great but crazy dangerous for your TBR, lol!
      If you have a niche, a special interest, I encourage you to launch your own tours, it is so much fun getting more in touch with authors and more bloggers! But I think the niche is the one thing important here


  10. I like the book club idea where you guys exchange titles instead of all reading the same book. That’s really cool. I never have liked the idea of being forced to read a specific book. I also love the book tour company you’ve started. That’s way awesome and a great idea! Sounds to me like you’ve got a good handle on blogger development.


    • thanks co-cheerleader [just went also to leave a comment on your post] .
      and the trading titles format has the advantage that men feel comfortable as much as women sharing about their reading – unfortunately, too many ‘regular’ books clubs focus on books for women


  11. Nice! France is a country I am facinated to with. I like the food and the culture. I once did an exchange program in Tours, France and loved it! That’s cool that your book club talks about many books at once, each of you commenting on a book you were interested in.


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  13. Thanks for the link and mentioning the birds. I’ve only met a few bloggers in person. I’d like to go to BEA one of these days, which may happen in a few years if it comes to Chicago as scheduled in 2016.

    I like the format of your book club but I’m sure it probably adds more books to your ‘want to read’ list. I know that’s what would happen to me!


    • you are welcome, you deserve many visits!
      by the way, am I dreaming or did you change your site? I use to be able to “like” your posts I think, I can no longer.
      wow, BEA in Chicago?? I had no idea, that would be AWESOME.
      yes, the trading title format is a total curse for TBRs, lol
      sorry to see you are not part of the ArmchairBEA madness


      • I don’t think I changed anything but I took a look at my settings and found that the ‘like’ button was set to show up only when you clicked on comments. I changed it now so it also also shows up on the front page. And yup, BEA is scheduled here for 2016 at McCormick Place. Of course a lot can happen in three years!


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