Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Hold onto your Kindles...Americans are reading more!

Yippee! As reported in a Time online article, a recent NEA report indicates the first increase in the rate of reading among American adults in a quarter-century. And the numbers are significant. But why? That's a tough one. I'll think on it. You think on it, too.

Could it be that we were all inspired by our book-gobbling president? No, the current one. President Bush. Seriously. Who knew? (He should have done a better job of letting us know what was on his nightstand.) Read it here.

The news about this sudden and unexpected uptick in reading certainly cheered me up, especially after reading this essay in The New York Times about the overwhelming ubiquity of screens in today's society. From the car to the computer, from the iPhone, iPod, Kindle and PSP, the article posits that we're slowly evolving into a screen-based society, in which screen literacy will replace book literacy. The death knell for the book? Who knows. I'll think on it. You think on it, too.

Speaking of Kindles, here's another piece from The New York Times about the growing popularity of e-books. Is it a growing trend? Or a passing fad? I only know two people who own a Kindle, and they love the white thick-as-a-brick device. Me? I'm a Mac guy. I love a beautiful design, and I don't see that when I look at a Kindle, albeit from afar; it may be a design marvel when you use it. Does the iPhone have a good book app yet? Is that screen just too small? I'll think on it. You think on it, too.

Lastly, there was this in the USA Today today about Greg Heffley's "Wimpy Kid" series, a runaway hit, to be sure. And something of a marvel for the reluctant reader crowd. As I've always said, sometimes it takes just ONE book to get a youngster "hooked on books." Seems like this series is working wonders. But why this book? Why not another series? What can a guy like me learn from its success? Is there a magic formula at work here? I'll think on it. You think on it, too.

1 comment:

max said...

Author James Patterson has a ten year-old son who doesn’t like to read. So Patterson has established http://www.readkiddoread.com to help other reluctant readers.

I, too, grew up as a reluctant reader. And my father was the author of over 70 books. Now I write action-adventure and mystery books especially for tween boys. My blog, Books for boys, http://booksandboys.blogspot.com is # 4 on Google today.

Max Elliot Anderson