Friday, June 11, 2010
Summer will soon be approaching, and in some cases, it already feels like summer. It's time to dust off your bookshelves and get to reading. That's right. Skip the pool and dive into a good book.
Since January 2006, I've been keeping a log on the books I read. So far, it's over 200, and on average, I read around 50 books a year. Some years more, some less. Although I read books all year, I find that I do read the most in the summer. Nothing's better than spending a lazy, hot afternoon or evening sprawled out with a book. Before I began working full-time and writing, I would spend days just reading, immersed in a book so much that I only paused for bathroom breaks and a quick snack.
I don't keep an actual list of books I want to read. I don't think there is enough paper out there for it. *laughs* But, I do keep one in my mind, and it keeps on adding up. Right now, I'm reading three books. One I'm two-thirds finished, the other I'm half-way finished, and the third I just started. I'm sure I'll finish them and some others this summer.
It seems like summer is a premium time to read, though. There are more daylight hours and less new shows on television. There's something about it that just makes me want to read.
I have a great way of discovering new books to read, too, that many might not know about, and this really is what this post is about. A year or so ago, I discovered a wonderful thing while looking on my library's website: online book clubs. No, I'm not quite talking about getting together on a list, reading a book, and discussing it. I'm talking about having a five-minute read sent to my email Monday-Friday of a book. Then, the next week, I receive a new book. This online book club is from DearReader.com, and many libraries all over the world support the readings.
There are several categories that you can request books, depending on your interests. The categories are: business, fiction, good news, mystery, teen, science fiction, non fiction, romance, thriller, audio books, and pre-published. I have joined fiction, mystery, teen, thriller, and pre-published, and I'm considering adding romance to it, since some of my writings are shifting a little toward romance and its sub-categories.
As a reader, it's wonderful to receive a snippet of a new book, read the first chapter or so, and decide whether or not I want to read more without having to buy or borrow the book first. So far, I haven't had a single book I've read before, and that's saying something!
As a writer, it's a wonderful study on the first few chapters of a book. To read what works and what doesn't. How other authors bring a reader into a story and hook them.
Another bonus of the online book club is columnist-turned-author Suzanne Beecher. She is a wonderful woman who shares her life and recipes in a column before every daily book reading. She also wrote a book Muffins & Mayhem Recipes for a Happy (if Disorderly) Life, which came out June 1st. I absolutely love reading Suzanne's column, so let's just say that the book is in my cart on Amazon, waiting for a few more purchases to get my free shipping. *laughs* She also is giving away free signed bookplates if you buy her book.
So, if you enjoy good books and the occasional chance of prizes, take a look at DearReader.com. You won't be disappointed.
And, have a good summer with a great book.
Posted by Cherie Reich at 7:40 AM