Thursday, July 19, 2012

Book Blogger's Hop

I went to Book Blogger's Hop today. It's a really cool way to connect with other book bloggers and make friends. The site is hosted by Crazy for Books, a blog where Jennifer reviews books she's read and makes recommendations.

The question of the week on Book Blogger's Hop is: How long does it take you to read a book?

Simple question, right? My first impulse is to say a couple of days or so and then I'm on to the next. But not so fast. There are exceptions.

  • What about books I fall in love with and want to live inside for as long as possible. Some of the great Victorian novels are like that. Jane Austen too. They create an alternative reality that I don't want to abandon. I slow myself down for these books.
  • Other books bore me silly. This is the other side of the coin. I probably won't even finish these.
  • Then there are the ones I feel a little embarrassed reading. The guilty pleasures. Some detective and mystery fiction falls into this category. I consume these like candy. (Sometimes they're just about as nutritious, but I don't care.)
  • And of course there are the novels I read to study as well as enjoy--books written by authors I can learn from. I love these books, and I take my time with them. There are so many writers to admire. And sometimes, if I'm having a particular problem, I learn how a more experienced writer has tackled the same problem. I go to school on these books.
  • Nonfiction books fascinate me depending on subject matter. I love biography and autobiography. I read these quickly to satisfy my curiosity about someone.

That's scratching the surface, of course, but it shows how reading speed depends on a lot of different things. Unless, that is, you're like my mother. She could speed-read everything. It never took her more than a day to read an entire book, even "War and Peace." She never took a course in speed reading either, it was just her natural rhythm. I've never known anyone else like that.

What about you? How long does it take you to read a book?

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