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Katherine is the Managing Editor at The Hudsucker. She has been working in libraries for the past 10 years and holds a B.A. in American Studies & Ethnicity from the University of Southern California. In her free time, the Seattleite enjoys writing fiction, going to brunch, taking long walks with her roommate, and playing Dungeons & Dragons with her friends. Katherine is a huge fan of the Seattle Mariners and has probably seen every Marvel movie at least five times. She loves classic rock and can quote even the most obscure lines from The Simpsons. Follow Katherine on Twitter: @thethingiskat.

Making the Most of Summer Reading for a Relaxing Wind Down

Image Credit: Simon Cocks on Flickr

The sun is shining. The sky is blue. Perhaps there’s even a light breeze. Maybe you’re at the park. Or sitting on a blanket at the beach. Maybe you’re just relaxing on your balcony. Wherever you are, summer is right around the corner, and with that comes one of the best summer activities – reading.

These days, reading has become associated with summer just as much as vacations and barbecues. Whether passing the time on a long trip, taking a stay-cation, or just relaxing during downtime, reading is one of the most fun and productive summer activities. Bookstores and libraries are full of displays highlighting bestsellers and books that might be of interest. Though it can sometimes be difficult to find the right book, and the right place to enjoy it, summertime presents ample opportunity to find the best literary fit for you.

Finding a booklist is a good way to get started. A quick Google search will bring up lots of different booklists to peruse, and adding a qualifier such as “best young adult fiction” or “best non-fiction of 2015”, for example, can help narrow down results. Websites like Goodreads have reviews and lists that can help you find something new to read based on other books you’ve enjoyed. Bestseller lists for places like The New York Times will tell what the majority of Americans are currently enjoying. Going to a website like Amazon and looking at their bestseller lists will not only reveal what’s popular but also suggest similar titles based on those books.

Image Credit: CCAC North Library on Flickr

The public library is also a great place to get started on summer reading. Many libraries have programs for children and teens to get them reading over the summer, but some have programs for adults as well. Even if your library doesn’t have a summer reading program for adults, they usually have displays highlighting parts of their collection that might be of interest. Librarians and library staff are also great resources and can help recommend books. At the very least, you can browse the shelves and try out any book you’d like without having to worry about buyers remorse if you end up not liking it. Since many libraries now lend e-books in addition to physical books, it’s even easier to take library books on vacation to try out without worrying about losing the book or getting late fines.

Summer is also the time of year where lots of movies based on popular books are coming to theaters. Being able to compare the two is a great excuse to try a new book. Whether you read the book before or after the movie comes out, it’s always good to check out the source material and see what they changed and decide if you like it better than the movie. And summer reading isn’t just limited to novels. With so many comic book movies coming out every summer, it’s the perfect time to start a new comic series and explore different characters and universes.

Though summer in many ways is a time for breaks, free time can start to be filled up with trips and commitments with little time to do things for yourself. That’s why vacations and trips are practically made for reading. Long car rides and plane trips where there’s a lot of time to kill are perfect for starting a new book. Now that practically any device can be an e-reader, it makes traveling with books a breeze. Though some people prefer holding a physical book in their hands, e-readers are nice for traveling because it means not having to lug around bags full of books. But vacations are generally meant to be a relaxing break from day to day life, and reading is the perfect way to kick back and escape.

Summer is also perfect for taking advantage of reading outdoors. Most people think of beach reading when they think of summer, and sometimes there is nothing better than laying down on a blanket in the sand with a book in hand. But besides beaches, parks and even patios are great places to sit down and enjoy the weather while diving into a good book. Since it stays light later in the summertime, reading outdoors can be done almost any time of day, and reading in natural sunlight is always nicer.

Though these are all suggestions about how to take advantage of summer reading, the most important thing is to make sure to read something. It doesn’t matter whether you’re reading one book or ten books, or re-reading an old favorite or trying something new. Summer only comes once a year, and it would be a shame to not take advantage of such a perfect atmosphere for reading.

Have tips on how to enjoy summer reading? Or any book recommendations? Feel free to share in the comments!

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One Comment on “Making the Most of Summer Reading for a Relaxing Wind Down”

  1. peace lover June 20, 2015 at 4:15 am #

    Reblogged this on peace lover.

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