On Reading Multiple Books
For most of my life, I have been a monogamous book reader. I’d select a book, and it would be the only one I would read until I finished it. I’d then select another book and begin the process again.
Lately, though, I have been reading FIVE books simultaneously. No, I don’t open all five books at once and read a page of each, though that might be interesting some time. I read each of the five books for specific purposes and in specific circumstances.
1. Regular Book. This is the book that would have been my monogamous book. It can be in hardback, paperback, or ebook format. I read it in all circumstances not covered by the other four books. I tend to get through this category of book much more quickly than the others.
Currently: All the Light We Cannot See, by Anthony Doerr (ebook)
2. Audio Book. This book stays in the car, usually. I listen to it whilst I’m driving about my everyday life. Obviously, this needs to be in audio book format, which most often is either on my phone from Audible or from the library on CD or OverDrive.
Currently: George Washington’s Secret Six, by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger (CDs)
3. Readaloud Book. This is whatever chapter book I am currently reading to my almost-five-year-old daughter before bed. It’s usually a paperback purchased from our frequent family visits to B&N and almost always has a dog of some kind in it.
Currently: Star of the Show (Magic Puppy #4), by Sue Bentley (paperback)
4. Work Book. This is, aptly, the book I take with me to work. I read it on my lunch break twice a week. I usually choose a short story or essay collection, so I can read finite selections in each sitting.
Currently: Redeployment, by Phil Klay (hardback)
5. Bed Book. Again, this book is aptly named, since it is the book I read right before I go to sleep. Various studies show that not looking at a screen and looking at a paper book before bed is best for rest. I have found this to be very true, so this is always a paper book.
Currently: Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie (paperback)
That’s my current system. It’s a little complicated, but it has been working out really well for me.
How many books do you read at a time?