.

.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

I'd Rather Be Reading - Anne Bogel

I'd Rather Be Reading by Anne Bogel

First Sentence:

Can you recommend a great book?

Blurb:

For so many people, reading isn't just a hobby or a way to pass the time--it's a lifestyle. Our books shape us, define us, enchant us, and even sometimes infuriate us. Our books are a part of who we are as people, and we can't imagine life without them.

I'd Rather Be Reading is the perfect literary companion for everyone who feels that way. In this collection of charming and relatable reflections on the reading life, beloved blogger and author Anne Bogel leads readers to remember the book that first hooked them, the place where they first fell in love with reading, and all of the moments afterward that helped make them the reader they are today. Known as a reading tastemaker through her popular podcast What Should I Read Next?, Bogel invites book lovers into a community of like-minded people to discover new ways to approach literature, learn fascinating new things about books and publishing, and reflect on the role reading plays in their lives.

My Thoughts:

Sometimes a book comes into your life at just the right time.  Sometimes people do the same.  I believe that this book was meant to be the one I picked up recently because it spoke to me - Kay, the reader - so very clearly.  It's a short little book, only 161 pages.  It contains a series of essays by Anne Bogel, she of the blog Modern Mrs. Darcy and the podcast What Should I Read Next?  I've listened to her podcast a few times.  I've not read her blog.  Seriously, every essay here made me nod my head - yep, that's me - I totally agree - I've done that! - Me too!  There's nothing earth shattering or shocking in these pages.  There are several quotes that I'll share.  This would make a great little gift book for someone or a quick little read for yourself.  Watch for it at your local library.  I think any avid reader would relate to many of the things Anne shares.  I certainly did and it made me feel like I could again 'reinvent' my 'reading life'.  Here's a few quotes that spoke to me:


On confessing your literary sins:
     Reader, whatever secret you're keeping, it's time to spill it.  I'll take your confession, but the absolution is unnecessary.  These secrets aren't sins; they're just secrets.  No need to repent.  C.S. Lewis once wrote, "Friendship...is born at the moment when one man says to another, 'What!  You too?  I thought I was the only one.'"
     Reader, you're not the only one.  Keep confessing to your fellow readers; tell them what your reading life is really like.  They'll understand.  They may even say, "You too?"  And when they do, you've found a friend.  And the beginnings of a great book club.

On the readers I have been over the years:
     I've been many kinds of readers over the years, and I remember them fondly.  (Sometimes I think I can imagine the readers I might yet be.)  I'm the sum of all these bookish memories.  My head is so full of musings and insights and ideas from books that I'm not sure who I would be or how I would think if they were all taken away.

On coming of age as a reader:
     When faced with the task of establishing your own reading life, you did it, or maybe you're still in the middle of doing it.
     Like other kinds of growing up, this doesn't happen overnight.  The transition happens slowly, over time.  We make a reading life by reading, and we stumble as we figure it out, learning through trial and error not just what to read for ourselves, but how.  Establishing not just that we will be readers, but determining what kind of readers we will be.

On books triggering memories:
     ...as a devoted reader, I've noticed how the books themselves serve as portals to my past, conjuring similarly powerful memories.  There's something about glimpsing, and especially handling, a book from long ago that takes me right back to where I was when I first read it.  The book triggers memories of why I picked it up, how it made me feel, what was going on in my life at the time, transporting me so thoroughly that, for a moment, I feel like I'm there once again.

On re-reading books:
     When I find myself in a dreaded reading slump, nothing boosts me out of it faster than revisiting an old favorite.  Old books, like old friends, are good for the soul.  But they're not just comfort reads.  No, a good book is exciting to return to, because even though I've been there before, the landscape is always changing.  I notice something new each time I read a great book.

On being asked to relate your 'favorite' book:
     Aside from the sheer impossibility of choosing just one favorite book, her question was daunting for another reason: I felt I'd been asked to lay my soul on the table.  Reading is personal and never more so than when we're sharing why we connect with certain books.

On starting a reading journal (and I recommend doing this too!):
     Reader, if you'd rather live in your reading moment than document it, I totally get it.  I'd rather be reading too.  But learn from my bookish regret:  I don't care what system you use (and I use the word system loosely) as long as you use one.  Start today, because as soon as you begin, you're going to wish you'd begun sooner.  Record your books as a gift to your future self, a travelogue you'll be able to pull off the shelf years from now, to remember the journey.

-------------------------------------------------------------

I know this was really long, but appreciate your time if you've made it this far.  May I just say that I am grateful to be sharing my reading life with all of you.  Here's to having plenty more years and books to share together!!


'kay's reading life' - journal created by Iliana of bookgirl's nightstand
 

35 comments:

  1. I have this book on my TBR list as I read her blog every week (she writes long, intelligent posts so I wait until the weekend to savor them all at a slower pace).

    And I love your journal-- how cute! I'll have to check out her site now. Thanks, Kay!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rita, I think you'd enjoy this book. As I said, nothing over the top or earth shattering, but thoughts that appeal to and describe almost all of us I suspect.

      Delete
  2. Love the quotes! And I recognize that Iliana journal. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I thought you might recognize it. I love those Nancy Drew journals that Iliana creates. Well, I love anything she creates. I got a beautiful journal last year for a niece that was struggling with some things. Iliana had the perfect one.

      Delete
  3. I need to read this Kay, I love when certain books and passages speak to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I'm always amazed when just the right book comes along.

      Delete
  4. I've been hearing about this but haven't picked up a copy yet. Love the quotes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It has a lot of thoughts that would describe many of us. If you see it around, pick it up and take a look.

      Delete
  5. I've been flirting with this book, and after reading your post, I want to get it. And I love that cover!! I think I chatted with the author recently at the Jane Austen Society Booth at the Brooklyn Book Festival. The reason I think so is because I gave my email to their mailing list, and all of a sudden, I've been getting email posts from Modern Mrs. Darcy--how's that for coincidence, lol.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm almost certain you are right, Catherine. As I said above, it's a short little book, but definitely one that speaks to the heart of how many of us would define our reading life.

      Delete
    2. Definitely putting it on my wish list now!

      Delete
  6. I will have to find a copy of this book. I love to read about reading and books. I never have worried about what other people thought of my reading though. In the first half of my life (roughly) I did not know that many people who read as much as I did, and by then I was comfortable with my own choices. I strongly agree on two things: I love to reread and and I wish I had started a book journal much earlier in my life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I thought that many of the topics she wrote about would appeal to other readers that I've met in the blogging world. Until I discovered others through cyberspace, I never knew anyone who read as much as I did. I was always the 'bookworm' who never did anything else when I was growing up.

      Delete
  7. You totally make me want to read this book! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad, Lark. I would say if you see it at your library, pick it up and see what you think.

      Delete
  8. I really enjoy her podcast so I think I'd like the book. Now I just need time to read it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It a very quick read if that helps, Mary. :-)

      Delete
  9. What a lovely post! I absolutely adore books about books and have read a number. My favourites are definitely the two by Susan Hill, Howards End is on the Landing and Jacob's Room is Full of Books but I don't honestly think I've read a bad one. Must be the subject. LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I need to try those two because you and Nan recommend them so highly.

      Delete
  10. I've read her blog for several years now. I have the book on my Christmas list! :D Too soon?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This book on a Christmas list would be perfect.

      Delete
  11. This sounds like such a great little book. Going to check it out for gift giving.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a nice one and a quick read, but lots to think about.

      Delete
  12. Fascinating quotes, Kay, and so pertinent to us as readers! What I liked the best is the vulnerable voice she has, not a pretentious “I’m trying to impress my readers” kind of thing. I love when we can all feel connected in some way.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I've added her blog to my list. I like this because she isn't telling us "what" to read. I don't think I have any literary "sins". Are there any such things?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The literary 'sins' that she refers to are when readers feel they are less or 'not doing it right' when they haven't read certain 'important' books or when they do really enjoy romances or sci-fi or the Twilight books or whatever. She refers to them as 'sins' because people feel or fear they will feel judged by others. And, no, I agree that there aren't literary sins. ;-)

      Delete
  14. Love the quotes and thanks for sharing this book with us, Kay. I think this book makes a great gift too for all booklovers. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, Melody. She gets to the heart of a lot of things we all feel.

      Delete
  15. I haven't heard of this and now I totally want it! Unfortunately I'm not really into podcasts (gasp!) but I'm slowly getting into audiobooks so maybe soon? :) I think any reader would definitely find something to relate with this one and really enjoyed the quotes you shared. Thank you for sharing a pic of one of my little journals too - what a delight to see it on your blog!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I loved sharing the picture of your journal, Iliana. I love all the cute things you make. I will say that I am very tempted to buy all your Nancy Drew journals. ;-)

      Delete
  16. I need a copy of this book! Those are great quotes that you shared and now I'm eager to read the book and her blog. Thanks, dear friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This was a fun little book. It spoke very clearly to me right now. Think you'd like it. And her blog is nice and the podcast is fun too.

      Delete
  17. Oh Kay, I loved this post! It is great to be a part of the book blogging world in addition to my book clubs. Fellow readers are indeed special people.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I agree Margot. I'm glad the quotes spoke to others as well. I thought they might. It's a great little book.

      Delete

Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!