Americans Read Five Books A Year, What Are You Reading?
That number seems so low to me, but would probably seem like a good 'target' goal for my hubby.
The Pew Research Center says, on average, Americans read 5 books per year. 69% read at least one printed book, 28% have read an e-book and 14% have listened to audiobooks.
I'm probably one of those who are killing that curve. I'm more of five a month, not five a year. So, if you're wanting to at least make yourself 'average,' I thought I would share the five books I have read this month:
- 'Grasshopper Jungle' by Andrew Smith: This was one WEIRD book, but there was something compelling about the cadence of the writing which kept me entertained until the end of the world (literally). If you are at all offended by the things teenage boys think about (eating and sexing), then you'll need to skip this one because it can get graphic. The basic premise is this: the world is about to end, although no one really knows it yet, and it's going to happen as people turn into 6-foot-tall bugs that eat and reproduce and eat and reproduce. The hero of the book and his best friend and girlfriend are both trying to save the world and their relationships during the book. It is both sad, funny, disgusting and intriguing. After reading this, I think I know how it feels to be a teenage boy growing up in rural Iowa.'
- On Such A Full Sea' by Change-Rae Lee: I get in reading ruts sometimes. I love young adult post-apocalyptic stories. Since The Hunger Games, there have been MANY. Too many. I've found a few that stand out from the rest, and this is one. It's not because it is about a teenage girl who leaves the familiarity of home to seek out her boyfriend who left the safety of the compound in which they live, it's because it is written with an emotional reserve that is so rare in American fiction. Lee weaves beautiful prose into an end-of-the-world scenario that makes you want to keep reading what he writes -- even if the story is less than the style.
- 'Commandant of Auschwitz' by Rudolf Hoess: I want you to know that I don't just read stories about the end of the world. . . although this story is ALSO about the end of the world. I started this after my husband and I watched a five-part documentary about the concentration camps at Auschwitz via Netflix. If you haven't seen it and have the service, I highly recommend it. it's called, "Auschwitz: Inside the Nazi State." Hoess was the Commandant of the camp and after he was tried and convicted for war crimes, he was given the opportunity to write his autobiography before his execution. This book is the result of that and it's almost painful to read as he explains and excuses himself from the largest hate crime in modern history.
- 'Innocence' by Dean Koontz: Ok, this was a mistake. If you have ever read Dean Koontz, you know it will be weird, probably supernatural and have some gross stuff in it. I'm ok with all of that. This was a good way to while away a snowy afternoon -- but it's not something I'll put on the shelf to keep forever.
- 'Relic' by Preston & Child': This is my audio book choice for the month. I have at least one at all times. It's the best way to commute after listening to the radio (of course). Relic, the book, is probably different than Relic, the movie (which I've never seen). It's the first book with one of my favorite detectives: Special Agent Pendergrass. It's older, but still a great listen.
So, if I were average I could just stop right now since I hit my quota of five. I'll probably keep going, though, because I always loved to mess up the curve.
What's on your reading list?