UCF Alumni Bookstagrammers

Collage of UCF Bookstagrammers



It’s the UCF Alumni Book Club’s first birthday! One year of building an online community where Knights can connect and talk about books. This week, we’re spotlighting a few of our book club members who take their love of reading to the next level on Instagram, or Bookstagram, as the community is called on the social media platform.


These AlumKnights review and recommend books, take some AMAZING book photos, and connect with readers all over the world.  

Photo of Andrea Pulido-Maddens


Andrea Pulido-Maddens ’14 ’16MA

@shelf_1ndulgence


Tell us a little about you!

My name is Andrea, and I am a two-time UCF alum. I live on a gorgeous farm in Lincoln, Nebraska with my fellow UCF alum hubby and our husky Alderaan. When I am not working as an ISD at Pacific Life, you can find me with my nose stuck in a book.


Why did you start a bookstagram?

I had just moved to the heartland and knew absolutely no one...and then the pandemic hit. I felt isolated, so I decided to go online to find a community of people with whom I could gush about books. I loved bookstagram so much that I decided to make my own content and find new ways to interact with others.


What's your favorite part of running a bookstagram account?

Nerding out about books with people who love to read as much as me.


What are your top three books that you'd recommend to readers?

  • The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
  • The Nature of Witches by Rachel Griffin
  • Lore by Alexandra Bracken
photo of Brittany Dansereau


Brittany Dansereau ’13

@bookbuzzing


Tell us a little about you!

My name is Brittany and I'm happy to call the City Beautiful my home! I graduated from UCF in 2013 (Go Knights!) and am currently the Senior Marketing Manager of a chain restaurant brand. Some of my hobbies outside of reading include: attending UCF football games, exploring Orlando's restaurant scene, fitness and any outdoor activity. 


Why did you start a bookstagram?

A book I was reading mentioned a cocktail, and I decided it would be fun to make the drink mentioned. I randomly took a photo of the book and cocktail and posted it in a book-themed Facebook group. I was shocked to see the level of excitement from the post! The next day, my bookstagram account was born. 


I didn't know it then, but I was desperately in need of a creative outlet. This account has evolved as a way for me to express myself through writing reviews, photography, and cocktail recipes. I've also enjoyed gathering and sharing statistics about my reading habits. 


What's your favorite part of running a bookstagram account?

The community aspect. Reading, writing, and even running this account are very much solitary activities. It's been amazing to meet new people, reconnect with others, and share my love of reading with my closest friends and family through this account. It’s provided me with solace, especially this past year.


I also love the open discussions with other readers – whether it’s conversation about a specific book or recommendations, topics about the literary world or even day-to-day life updates. 


What are your top three books that you'd recommend to readers?


Non-fiction:

⁃ Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah

⁃ Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb

⁃ The Anthropocene Reviewed by John Green 


Fiction:

⁃ Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

⁃ Anything by Taylor Jenkins Reid 

⁃ The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Daré


Connect with Brittany on Goodreads!


photo of Anne Wilsen


Anne Wilsen ’11 ’14MS

@readingfortheweekend


Tell us a little about you!

I graduated with my both my Bachelor's and Master's Degrees in Hospitality Management from UCF. I was very involved in Greek Life as an undergraduate, and I continue to be involved as an alumnae volunteer. I am a huge UCF football fan and have been a season ticket holder for a few years now! I recently joined the UCF Alumni Seminole County Chapter as a board member.


Why did you start a bookstagram?

I found that after graduation I was reading more and more books for fun. My friends were supportive of how I would share my current reads on my private Instagram page, but I started to feel like I was only posting about books! Soon after, I discovered the "bookstagram" community.


So in June of 2019, I took the plunge of starting my bookstagram armed with only my stack of library books and my pool. And since then, I have been able to share my love of books all while reading from a pool float.


I am so glad I started @ReadingfortheWeekend and I am so pleased to now host a monthly thriller novel buddy read (#ReadingAddictsBuddyRead), and of course to participate in the UCF Alumni book club!


What's your favorite part of running a bookstagram account?

I enjoy sharing book recommendations with fellow book lovers! Since starting my account, my reading has broadened greatly! There are so many books I never would have heard of and now they are some of my favorite books.


What are your top three books that you'd recommend to readers?

  • Behind Closed Doors by BA Paris
  • Meet You in the Middle by Devon Daniels
  • Happiness for Beginners by Katherine Center


You can connect with Anne on Goodreads and visit her blog.


photo of Tabitha Pazmino ’11


Tabitha Pazmino ’11

@bookmarkedbytab


Tell us a little about you!

I currently reside near Atlanta, Georgia and love spending time with friends and family exploring the city and trying new activities. As someone who lived in the Caribbean as a young child and grew up in Florida for most of my life, I love being out in the sun and by the water. If I can be by the pool, go to the beach, or for a nature walk/hike I will do so in a heartbeat. I also love being outdoors and enjoy watching sports as well as attending sporting events. I love meeting new people and getting to know their backgrounds, because the truth is everyone has a story worth telling.


Why did you start a bookstagram?

I started a bookstagram to help keep myself accountable in reading and writing but also to encourage others who are on that same journey. I've always loved reading and writing, but over the years I wouldn't carve out the time to do these things. It was easy to blame the busyness of life, work, and relationships on why I didn't take time for the things I love. It wasn't until the pandemic occurred that I was really forced to slow down and reevaluate things. In that process I rekindled my love for books and I wanted to find others who also shared that same love. Most importantly, I wanted to encourage others with their journey through life and let them know it's okay if you haven't read all the classics or if you just started getting back into reading after many years. This space is still for you.


What's your favorite part of running a bookstagram account?

My favorite part of running a bookstagram account is the community. I didn't fully understand it until I was in it. The people you meet in the bookstagram space start to become friends and support systems. Over time you start to spend more time interacting with them and organizing and meeting up. It becomes a special community that you didn't know you needed. They tell you what books to look out for, what events are happening, and where you can possibly get advanced copies or free books. Overall, the bookstagram community supports others and helps everyone in their journey. It becomes a happy place.


What are your top three books that you'd recommend to readers?

  • The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
  • Memorial Drive by Natasha Tretheway
  • Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah


Connect with Tabitha!

TikTok: @bookmarkedbytab

Goodreads: @bookmarkedbytab

photo of Elsa Anschuetz


Elsa Anschuetz ’17

@readingicequeen


Tell us a little about you!

My name is Elsa, and I graduated from UCF in December 2017 with a double major in advertising/public relations and sociology. I work at a PR agency in downtown Orlando, representing technology clients worldwide. I love escaping in a good book, spending time at Disney, and supporting our Knights during football season. Charge on!


Why did you start a bookstagram?

I started my bookstagram, @ReadingIceQueen, in November 2020. While I've always been an avid reader, the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly increased the number of books I read. I discovered a few new favorites over the last year and yearned for a community to share my love for reading with.


What's your favorite part of running a bookstagram account?

I love connecting with other readers all over the world. I'll routinely converse with folks from Australia and England on our favorite books and authors. Seeing the impact reading has on people everywhere - especially during the pandemic - has had a resounding impact on me.


What are your top three books that you'd recommend to readers?

  • The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • Beach Read by Emily Henry
photo of books with text on top that reads "UCF Alumni Book Club"

UCF Alumni Book Club


In this online community, UCF alumni and friends can connect and enjoy books through online discussions, virtual gatherings, and events. There is no cost to participate - you just have to get a copy of the book to enjoy. 


You can also discover the latest books by fellow Knights on our Knight Authors webpage.