Friday 7 March 2014

End of another week

It's Friday again, another week over, well almost. Another week which has seen some good book related stuff going on. I've finally been accepted for Bookbridgr which is kind of exciting. They are still in their infancy evidently, but it looks as though it will become a very useful tool for bloggers, booksellers and hopefully for the publishers too. Unlike Netgallery, which deals only in ebooks, Bookbridgr offers the chance to be sent physical ARCs. I always find that it takes me about three times as long to read an ebook, and I certainly never find it as relaxing, so it is nice that there is another outlet for accessing ARCs.

As part of work I've been working my way through the Academy programme. At the moment I am working through a series of items covering the children's section. Part of this is has been discussing the difficulties in encouraging children to start and then to continue reading. A wonderful blog post was included with some great ideas about how to inspire kids to read more.
 Obviously every reader will be different and so many kids start off well and then let their reading lapse until they are in their mid teens or even later. I can understand how difficult it can be to keep the joy of reading alive, something as simple as an ill chosen book can smother the desire to read so easily. I was brought up in a house full of books, and have been growing my own personal library since I was very small. At the same time my brother found it really difficult to keep up an interest in reading, he loved The Worst Witch when he was small, then a long period passed before he decided to read anything again. With him it was Tank Girl that reignited his interest, although even then it wasn't until after his A Levels that he really got his teeth back into books. Ironically he is a trained English teacher, and it was his joy of English language that led back to reading literature. Now his most prized possessions are his books, which lean towards the Elmore Leonard, Dennis Lehane bent.
  The most depressing thing I hear while at work is people, usually teens, coming in and proudly telling their friends that they have 'never been in a bookshop before' or have 'never read a book'. I cannot conceive of the type of deprivation that would lead to that kind of statement. Certainly I cannot imagine ever being proud of something like that. To me it speaks of a mind that is entirely closed off and is just too awful to imagine. I understand that a lack of confidence could make people feel daunted by some of the great tomes that have won the big awards recently, but how anyone could get through their life without having read anything is just beyond me. There are so many ways to keep reading these days, picture books are often as intelligent as 'proper' novels, graphic novels and comics contain the exact same elements as does manga. All of these could be used to link into reading more traditional literature.
So if ever anyone says something about being out of touch with reading, that is the time to open their eyes to the huge range of books that are out there each one packed full with its own story and worlds without end.

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