Friday, July 6, 2018

What Kind Of Bookworm Are You?

I recently read a new book that bookworms should adore – So You Think You’re a Bookworm?,  by Jo Hoare.

Though it didn’t share deep, passionate, insightful passages about the love of books, it did share a few dozen witty profiles of book-lovers, from the sci-fi lover and book clubber to the fanfic-obsessive and the one who judges a book by its cover.

The introduction perfectly identifies how the world is “divided into two types of people:  the book lovers and the What the Hell Do You Mean You Haven’t Read A Book Since School People.”

There are so many types of bibliophiles.  You will probably come to recognize yourself in the pages of this cutely packaged, glossy-page, illustrated book of 64 breezy pages.

Are you a book binger?  

Do you prefer to get your books by borrowing or buying?  

Are you what the author identified as a book abuser? She writes:  “This bookworm shows no desire to maintain the sharp angles of a creaseless page and cares not for the delicate spines of their novels.  Instead, they place heavy bags on top of open books laid face down on hard surfaces, crushing spines like the marauding giant in the fantasy paperback they, are reading.  Rumor has it they’ve never even owned a bookmark.”

I especially liked the chapter on the 12 ways bookworms choose books when in a bookstore.  Where should one start or end when coming to a bookstore?  Catchy titles and attractive covers lure us all about.  Oh, and the smell of books gets us every time!

One chapter questions just how much of a book-lover you really are.  It questions our habits and values.  Do we pack them for vacation – how many books?  Where do you keep your books?  Do you stay up really late with a book? What’s your favorite book?

Another chapter reveals why one is a sci-fi, lover – from the escapist writing, future predictions, lessons taught, and thrilling adventures, to the anything-can-happen possibilities.

A humorous chapter, How to Upset a Book Lover, suggests questions to ask bookworms that are sure to antagonize them.  Saying a movie is better than the book it’s based on is cause for fisticuffs!  Saying one has too many books is blasphemy, and to actually have an answer to “What’s your favorite book?” is impossible.

Hoare laments that ebook readers make it harder for onlookers to observe and judge the reading choices of others.  “Damn those commuters with their Kindles who are ruining this game,” she writes.  There’s also a short debate of paper vs. digital books – tree-killers vs. toxic device embracers.  Which one are you?

The book also talks about “The Faker” – the one who acts as if he or she has read any book mentioned in a conversation, especially every novel on every shortlist of every single major literary prize.

But my favorite is “The Adulterer,” as identified by Hoare in a chapter dedicated to those who read multiple books simultaneously, sometimes dumping one for another.  She writes:

“Welcome to world of the literary adulterer, the type of reader who is unable to commit to one novel at a time.  If books were dates, this person would be ticking the box that said “in an open relationship.”  The adulterer never sets out to cheat on a book, each now read starts a fresh in the wake of another awkward crossover – (this book is the one,” they think.  And for a few glorious days it is.  Never far from The Adulterers side, this latest to me accompanies the bookworm on the bus, in bed, and at the breakfast table, pages crinkling in hot baths and cold rain.”

A bookworm, no doubt, is the kind of person who would prefer to read books over most activities, including talking to others.

But one can enjoy books and still fully participate in a balanced life.  If you want to acknowledge being a bookworm while having a book-loving writer make jokes about you and your kind, you’ll enjoy Hoare’s all-too short tribute.

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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.”

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