“In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” – Mortimer J. Adler
I have always loved reading. Since I was a young girl, books fascinated me. My father is an educationist and as a result we grew up surrounded by books; stack and stacks of them. Most of them were religious books, but books they were. Somewhere in my teens my father signed up to a library where he got two free books a month in exchange for book reviews; guess who ended up doing most of the book reviews? My precious sisters and I. At the time, if I am being honest, I will confess that I hated the task. It was tedious, it was uncalled for, I did not enjoy it.
The end justifies the means on this one. I ended up reading and owning so many books. I also learned the invaluable skill of book evaluations and writing book reviews.
Then life happened and my reading and reviewing began the slow but steady downward spiral. Apart from when I was in school, I did not read as much as I did in my earlier days of living.
January 2018 when I stumbled on Sunny Bindra’s #50booksin2018 and I got the energy I needed to get back on intentional reading. And read I did. I lost count of how many books I read actually, but I will not forget the lessons and ideas I engaged with in those books. I just loved getting my book reading and book reviewing groove back.
“I have no time to . . .”
This is one of the commonest all time excuse for not doing anything and everything under the sun. I must admit I have fallen into this trap when it came to reading over the years as well. So where do you get time to read? How do you redeem your time when it comes to reading.
My four top reading spaces/times
This is my number one space/time to do my reading, book reviewing and writing. Just reflect and you will be surprised at how much time you spend in the toilet in a day, a week, a month, a year! Now start leaving your phone outside this small exclusive private room and instead have a book with you. You will be surprised at the amount of reading you will accomplish.
Try it and let me know how it goes.
Once again, put aside your phone and whip out a book. Stop staring into space and snooping around into people’s private conversations and whip out a book.
Always carry a book with you. I it is a small book have it on you. Any time you are asked or made to wait, whip out your book and read away.
Last but not least and another one of my favourite. Reading while eating; eating while reading. I love it! I just wish I could have the opportunity to read while eating more often; but for now number 1 will do!
Of Course by reading the four spaces/times you can redeem for reading you have realised that your phone is one of the greatest competitors to you developing a reading culture. Make a habit of picking up a book and reading a chapter everytime you feel the urge to pick up your phone and scroll through social media.You will be surprised at how small steps build a love for reading in you. With time, picking up a book instead of your phone will become second nature to you. But it must be intentionally and consciously cultivated.
Writing a book review
“I kept always two books in my pocket, one to read, one to write in.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
There is something about writing down what you learn. I guess it has to do with involving as much of your senses to have ideas, lessons and concepts stick to your brain.
Writing book reviews for your own self and even for others cements your interaction with what you read in you.
Here is my simple guideline on writing a book review.
Integrated Living Book Review Guidelines
- Title of Book.
- Name of Author
- WHO is the Primary Audience?
- WHAT is the Message of the Author to them?
- WHY did the Author write to them?
- Read the Entire Book and Take Notes for each chapter
- Write a 350-500 Word Summary of the Book
- Write down 3-5 Key Lessons You have learnt from the book
- Write down how you intend to implement each of those key lessons in your life.
- Integrate those lessons into your life.
Happy Book Reading!
Happy Book Reviewing!