So how many books did you read this year?

The question in today’s blog title can bring fear to who is being asked that. So as you know (or maybe you didn’t?) I used to be a book blogger. If you don’t know what this, I read books and blogged about them. I read my own books, books I got from the library, and books that were sent to me from publishers, authors, publicists, etc. That mean I received A LOT of books. That also meant that I READ a lot of books.

I’ve always been a voracious reader ever since I was a little kid, thanks to my mom teaching me how to read when I was 3. I’ve always had a love for reading even when it was uncool. Books have always been a good friend to me. So when we did the summer reading programs at our libraries, my sisters and I were always reading insane numbers of books just because we liked doing it, not for prizes or bragging rights.

During the book blogger years, I read a lot. Part of it was pressure due to being a book blogger, part of it was to escape real life circumstances, part of it was due to having a job where I sat by myself in a warehouse alone for hours during the day waiting on things. So adding up all those factors and there were several years where I read over 400-500 books a year.

I bring this up because last week Book Riot released the results of a survey about reading habits and poo hit the fan because of what was revealed: that someone had read 1500 books last year. People couldn’t believe it. Were they reading kids books? Were they lying about this? Because NO ONE can read more than 300 books a year. People were complaining that whoever did this made them feel bad about their own reading habits. Comments were going on for a while both on the post and on the Facebook post as well.

And it made me realize, this is WHY I really don’t like talking about how many books I read anymore. Because people always accused me of lying. People always assumed I read kids books. Just because THEY couldn’t read that many meant I was lying. I made THEM feel bad about how much they didn’t read. It goes on and on.

I don’t know if that person who said they read that many books was lying, truthful, or what they read. But kudos for them. I mean since it was an anonymous survey we have no idea who it was and I’m not quite sure how on earth we can even really prove it. You shouldn’t feel bad because someone else reads more than you. It’s never been a contest, some people can just read fast, and it doesn’t matter what someone else reads. So what if they read 1500 kids books and you read 2 books and one of them was War and Peace? Are you a better person than they are? Or what IF they did read 1500 books that were 500 pages each and all non fiction historical and scientific research books? Are they a better person than you?

Even now, and even though I read wayyyyy less than what I used to, it’s only with other hard core readers I really like discussing books with. I’ve learned that books are very subjective to people and even though I’d love to share with real life friends about what I’ve read, sometimes I just can’t. I don’t want to feel guilty about what I read, nor do I want to make others feel guilty. It’s not that I’m keeping things secret, it’s just sometimes you can’t share everything even with your closest friends. That’s why social media was invented. So I can go on Twitter and find those who understand.


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