“Being pulled into the world of a gripping novel can trigger actual, measurable changes in the brain that linger for at least five days after reading, scientists have said.”
(From The Independent, December 28, 2013)
Girl Reading by Charles Edward Perugini (1878)
I was browsing the “Staff Picks” section at a local library when I came across This Book Is Overdue!: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All by Marilyn Johnson. I like libraries, have considered becoming a librarian, and know some librarians, so this sounded just right for me.
The book is a really light read, which was nice, since I usually don’t like reading nonfiction that’s rather heavy. It presented different aspects of being a librarian and running a library, including some different takes on libraries, both good and bad. My only complaint was that it had way too much about librarians who use Second Life, which I found really boring. The rest of the book was enjoyable though, and has made me think again about pursuing a library science degree.
What are you currently reading?
I just started reading Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh, which I’ve had on my shelf for a bit. So far, it’s not as light as Scoop, which I read last year, but I like it all right so far.
What do you think you’ll read next?
Earlier in the week, I started reading through Suite Francaise by Irène Némirovsky, after having set it aside earlier in the year. I tend to only read one book at a time, so I think I might return to this after I finish Brideshead Revisited.
I’ve had a bit of time on my hands in the last year, and some of that time has gone to reading a lot of the books I’ve acquired and never had time to actually read. In a “normal” calendar year, I’ll usually read 15-20 books if I can manage it, but last year I read 33, and this year, I’ve read 39 so far. When I finish a book, I usually keep track of it in a notebook and on LibraryThing (here’s my profile), and then usually post a rating, sometimes with a review, on Amazon or other sites that provide recommendations on other books to read. (I also do the latter part for books I don’t like and stop reading.) If I do post a review, it’s usually short, but I’d like to try writing more detailed ones here.
I’ve also poked around some book/reader blogs recently and have seen a lot of people writing about participating in reading “challenges.” The challenges might be about reading about certain topics or in certain genres, reading a certain quantity (usually with a deadline), or reading from a preset list. I can’t think of anything like this, other than the occasional summer reading program, but it’s something I’d like to try out, especially if I can find neat books to read that way.
I tend to read a lot of historical fiction, and I’ve noticed that I sometimes get a little stuck in very specific areas of that. Lots of late 19th century to mid-20th century stories, mainly taking place in the US, England, Germany, or Japan. This summer and fall, for example, I’ve read an awful lot of novels taking place in WWII Germany and England. I do happen to find these time periods and places interesting, but sometimes I think it might be good to venture a bit outside of that, perhaps even in terms of genre. As long as they are well-written and enjoyable to read.
I might also post about anything new I acquire, though most of the books I get these days are used and gotten as cheaply as possible. I use a few book swap sites (BookMooch and PaperBackSwap mainly), and I also live near a small used bookstore, run by a local library “friends” group, that sells books for super-cheap. Plus, there are plenty of library book sales going on around here.
Ok, we’ll see how this goes!