Saturday, June 29, 2013

Presenting a Blogger...Roberta @ Offbeat YA

I told myself I wouldn't do too many interviews in a month, but you guys, they are just a lot of fun. I came up with a list after my last one with Lauren of people I want to interview and it's still growing. Not only do I find out more about my fellow friendly bloggers, but you all can too and even meet new ones! Without further ado, let me present Roberta from Offbeat YA

Hey Roberta! I'm so happy that you're here. Please introduce yourself and your blog.

Hi Sunny, and thanks for having me…I feel like a rockstar today. Well, just a little ;). And of course, hi everyone! I’m an ex-teenager (with a huge stress on the “ex” part) who recently rediscovered a love for YA books, especially since the genre has broadened its range quite a lot in the latest decade. I blog at Offbeat YA, which - as the name states – is a place for all the great, but not necessarily over-popular books that I manage to find and hope to pass on to you all.

Why or how did you decide to start blogging? 

I had been reading YA books regularly for a couple of years, when I finally realized that 1) some of my favourites were often overlooked by blogs and review sites; 2) I had a lot to say about them and the reasons why I loved them instead. So I decided to start my own blog, and in October 2012 Offbeat YA was born. 

That's great! I'm glad you're highlighting books that are often ignored. 

I see on your profile that you actually live in Italy! *sighs longingly* Do you feel that it's harder to be a international book blogger than it would be if you lived in America? 

Yes, definitely…because of course I’m not very likely to get ARCs or stuff like that, nor can I go to BEA and ALA events, and so on. You may wonder why I decided to blog internationally…well, I love to read books in their original version (having graduated in English, that’s not a problem), and not every one of those I’m interested in would necessarily get translated anyway (I think the YA market is way smaller in Italy)…also, I wanted to make an impact on the international community…though that amounts to dreaming big of course :).

Dream big! :) 

What genres do you love reading and/or reviewing the most? 

I’m a sucker for the weird…so I’d say, supernatural (especially stories about afterlife, coming back to life, etc.), sci-fi (not necessarily dystopian) and thriller. Having said so, it’s funny, but some of the best books I’ve read in the latest months were contemporary - a genre I rarely frequent.

Top three favorite authors? 

I tend to go for genres more than for authors, so it’s not like I can have a top three...well, of course I’m reading any Christopher Pike I can lay my hands on, YA or adult, because he may not be the best writer but I love his weird universe(s). There are novels I absolutely loved, but this didn’t prompt me to buy all the books their authors wrote. As far as adult books go, I’ve read anything Agatha Christie, except for her novels written as Mary Westmacott - but I plan on doing that too.

That was only two! 

If you could be one character in a book, without the worry of dying, who would you like to be? 

Maybe Seymour from The Last Vampire/Thirst series (Pike again), because he’s a best-selling writer but no one really knows how he looks like - he even has a number of alias, depending on the genre he’s writing a book in. I fancy myself as a successful artist living in the shadows, which may sound like a contradiction, but I tend to get embarassed by physical confrontation.

QUICK! Your house is burning and you can only grab three things (before the house crumbles down on you, everything is destroyed, etc). What would they be?

Ouch! You really hate me, don’t you? ;P Okay, let’s see. The bag I’m using when the disaster occurs, because my bag is like my third arm…or a crossover between a survival kit and a make-up station. My USB pen drive with lots of stuff saved that I may need…And then…my red pants…no, my black shirt with pink details…no, my red (again) coat…no, my multicolored pants with little hearts on them…err, on second thoughts – I should be going already!

Ha! I wasn't expecting an article of clothing. 

What song did you last listen to? 

I work as a speaker in a local radio station, so I’m constantly listening to songs, old and new…I went home from work today singing “Pompeii” by Bastille, because the darn song always sticks to my brain every time I have it in my playlist! At home I have a considerable music collection, but I haven’t listened to any of my personal records today. If I had, it would probably have been something Queen. 

What is one book that your recently read and loved? 

Deadgirl by B.C. Johnson, which I also reviewed. It’s out of print at the moment, due to the publisher shutting up shop - but Mr. Johnson is working on a new book deal, also involving a sequel. It’s the story of a girl who should be dead but it’s not…not really. She clings to life and fights in order not to disappear (literally) from the face of Earth, besides trying to save her friends from an equally hideous fate. It’s also a fun, moving, realistic portrait of a 15 year old girl dealing with first love, parents and friends, while trying to deflect the Grim Reaper’s hand of course.

Grim Reaper, you say? 

Anything else you would like to add? 

First off, thank you again Sunny for having me - I had fun answering your questions, and being interviewed for the very first time was an honour. I hope some of your readers will get curious enough to come and visit me at Offbeat YA - and if you do, guys, please don’t be shy. I love to interact, and anyone can comment on my blog. Most of all, I hope you’ll find some great new reads on there!

I feel honored that I'm the first one to interview you. It's been fun and I hope they will too!

This or That: 
Chocolate or vanilla? Dark chocolate – though I’d much rather have something salty or spicy!
Ebook or paperback? Call me jurassic, but paperback – I need my book to be physical (and my music too).
Star Wars or Star Trek? Neither...I’m not a big fan of sci-fi when it’s not on paper – especially if it deals with outer space.
Brunette or blonde? (of the boy variety) Brunette hands down...preferably with long, curly hair...unless it’s a young Roger Taylor from Queen or Jensen Ackles. I could make an exception for those two ;).
Winter or Summer? Mmh…winter is so cold…but, big shock, I’m not a fan on the seaside and the hot climate either…so, let’s say winter, since I was born on December!


So here's another blogger were able to get better acquainted with and a blog to check out. Happy reading! 



  1. Thank you again Sunny for hosting me :). Love the Italian flag and the gif!
    I posted about your interview here.

  2. Always nice to meet another International blogger! I know the feeling. Especially the fact that I can't attend BEA (yet, perhaps some day) is somethings hard to accept :p Great interview! :)

  3. Cute interview, Sunny! I love meeting new bloggers this way! :D

  4. I didn't see this post until now because I was busy ALA-ing, but I love the idea behind Roberta's blog. Popular books are often widely read for a reason, but there are so many equally good ones that get tossed to the side, and it's great that her site's main mission is to promote them. Now I'm off to go comment on Offbeat YA!

  5. I already love Roberta's blog as a way to find some different reads and it was fun to find out more about her :)

  6. awesome interview, i love roberta's blog!