Wednesday, October 17, 2018

I'd Rather Be Reading by Anne Bogel

One of my book loving friends, Kay, blogs at Kay's Reading Life. She also comments on this blog on Thursdays when we do "What Are You Reading?" Kay recently suggested a book of essays called I'd Rather Be Reading: The Delights and Dilemmas of the Reading Life by Anne Bogel. She mentioned it here, but she also reviewed it on her blog. I had to stop reading her review. I'll go back after I write this piece. But, she's right. This is such a perfect book for those of us who are avid readers that I bought four copies for friends.

Bogel opens by talking about this librarian's favorite question, "Can you recommend a good book?" The answer will be different for every reader, but it's a challenge to find your way to success. In chapter after chapter, she lists and addresses feelings readers share. Take the chapter "Bookworm Problems". Do you recognize any of these? "Your library holds all come in at the same time.""Your To Be Read list holds 8,972 titles, and you want to read every one. Your TBR list is unquestionably too long to finish before you die." "You have countless unread books at home, but you can't resist buying one more." Ah, the problems of a book addict.

How can you tear up reading about books? I managed, especially when I read the chapter "Take Me Back" when Bogel mourned that she didn't have the records for every library book she ever checked out. She says that list would capture where she was at various stages of her life, based on what she was reading. She knows even the titles and check-out dates would bring back memories.

Bogel's book is a small one, only 156 pages. But, for a reader, it's an affirmation of a passion. It's confirmation that we're not alone in that passion. There are kindred souls out there.

The dedication of I'd Rather Be Reading says, "For everyone who's ever finished a book under the covers with a flashlight when they were supposed to be sleeping." I think it's for all of us who would rather be reading than doing anything else in life. (And, if you want to read an excellent review of the book, check out Kay's blog.)

Anne Bogel's website is

I'd Rather Be Reading: The Delights and Dilemmas of the Reading Life. Baker Books, 2018. ISBN 9780801072925 (hardcover), 156p.

FTC Full Disclosure - I bought a copy of the book.


Jeff Meyerson said...

I can answer All of the Above on the questions. Every once in a while I feel I need to return a bunch of library books and reset because I am getting overwhelmed. And then something will turn up on Kindle that is (1) too cheap to pass up, (2) something I've been waiting for, (3) a book that is only available as an ebook, (4) a newly issued collection of several books.

You get the idea.

Lesa said...

I get the idea, Jeff. Problems of a bookworm!

Kay said...

Lesa - I'm so glad you checked this book out! Wasn't it just the best and, as you said, I think it shows how much we all have in common. A perfect little book about reading. Thanks for the shout-out about my blog and my thoughts on this. It arrived in my reading stack at the right time. I also loved the part about wishing you could know every book you'd ever checked out at the library. Me too, me too!! I hope others will try it and suspect that it will be available at most libraries eventually.

Lesa said...

Kay, I checked it out right after reading your comment about it for "What Are You Reading?" Thank you for the suggestion! It was one of the best books I've read on the subject. I have 4 friends who are celebrating milestone birthdays this year, all readers, and I bought copies for all of them even before I finished the book. It was perfect. Great suggestion! Thank you!

Margie Bunting said...

Four big yes's for me!

Lesa said...

I know, Margie! Isn't that what they refer to as a "First World problem?" Bring it on!