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The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life (audiobook) (Little Guides)

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"Perfect for all of us who can never get enough time with good books. It not only urges us to indulge deeply and often, it shows us how."-Myra Hart, professor, Harvard Business School "Readers and want-to-be readers will be encouraged by the advice to read more, more widely and more systematically."-Michael Keller, university librarian, Stanford University "An ideal gift f "Perfect for all of us who can never get enough time with good books. It not only urges us to indulge deeply and often, it shows us how."-Myra Hart, professor, Harvard Business School "Readers and want-to-be readers will be encouraged by the advice to read more, more widely and more systematically."-Michael Keller, university librarian, Stanford University "An ideal gift for both sporadic and relentless readers."-James Mustich Jr., publisher of A Common Reader "A worthy addition to even the most well-stocked personal library."-Ross King, author of Michelangelo & The Pope's Ceiling Do not set out to live a well-read life but rather your well-read life. No one can be well-read using someone else's reading list. Unless a book is good for you, you won't connect with it and gain from it. Just as no one can tell you how to lead your life, no one can tell you what to read for your life. How do readers find more time to read? In The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life, Steve Leveen offers both inspiration and practical advice for bibliophiles on how to get more books in their life and more life from their books. His recommendations are disarmingly refreshing, as when he advises when not to read a book and why not to feel guilty if you missed reading all those classics in school. He helps readers reorganize their bookshelves into a Library of Candidates that they actively build and a Living Library of books read with enthusiasm, and he emphasizes the value of creating a Bookography, or annotated list of your reading life. Separate chapters are devoted to the power of audio books and the merits of reading groups. The author himself admits he came "late to the bookshelf," making this charming little guide all the more convincing.


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"Perfect for all of us who can never get enough time with good books. It not only urges us to indulge deeply and often, it shows us how."-Myra Hart, professor, Harvard Business School "Readers and want-to-be readers will be encouraged by the advice to read more, more widely and more systematically."-Michael Keller, university librarian, Stanford University "An ideal gift f "Perfect for all of us who can never get enough time with good books. It not only urges us to indulge deeply and often, it shows us how."-Myra Hart, professor, Harvard Business School "Readers and want-to-be readers will be encouraged by the advice to read more, more widely and more systematically."-Michael Keller, university librarian, Stanford University "An ideal gift for both sporadic and relentless readers."-James Mustich Jr., publisher of A Common Reader "A worthy addition to even the most well-stocked personal library."-Ross King, author of Michelangelo & The Pope's Ceiling Do not set out to live a well-read life but rather your well-read life. No one can be well-read using someone else's reading list. Unless a book is good for you, you won't connect with it and gain from it. Just as no one can tell you how to lead your life, no one can tell you what to read for your life. How do readers find more time to read? In The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life, Steve Leveen offers both inspiration and practical advice for bibliophiles on how to get more books in their life and more life from their books. His recommendations are disarmingly refreshing, as when he advises when not to read a book and why not to feel guilty if you missed reading all those classics in school. He helps readers reorganize their bookshelves into a Library of Candidates that they actively build and a Living Library of books read with enthusiasm, and he emphasizes the value of creating a Bookography, or annotated list of your reading life. Separate chapters are devoted to the power of audio books and the merits of reading groups. The author himself admits he came "late to the bookshelf," making this charming little guide all the more convincing.

30 review for The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life (audiobook) (Little Guides)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Eric

    I found this book in the "essays" section of the bookstore and enjoyed reading it. I couldn't bring myself to pay $17.50 for the diminutive book, so I decided to see if I could find it cheaper online, or maybe even at the library. Fortunately, I did find it at the library and it wasn't checked out. Below are the notes that I collected as I read. Notes · Preview: end pages, fore pages, table of contents, and index. · "One hour of steady thinking over a subject (a solitary walk is as good an opport I found this book in the "essays" section of the bookstore and enjoyed reading it. I couldn't bring myself to pay $17.50 for the diminutive book, so I decided to see if I could find it cheaper online, or maybe even at the library. Fortunately, I did find it at the library and it wasn't checked out. Below are the notes that I collected as I read. Notes · Preview: end pages, fore pages, table of contents, and index. · "One hour of steady thinking over a subject (a solitary walk is as good an opportunity for the process as any other) is worth two or three of reading only" - Lewis Carroll. · Consider reading The Phantom Tollbooth with the children. · Rreview what you've read soon after you are done. · You might use end papers or a notebook for this. · Savor what you have read, "cool down" with it. · Talk with others about what you read and it will help you remember it. · SQ3R: Survey, Question (turn each heading into a question), Read, Recite, and Review. Use this process when you want to learn from a book. · Periodic Review: "The time you spend in reading is an investment. You ought to get good returns on it. But, in order to do so, you must salt down the essence of books and articles in whatever form proves most usable." - Walter Pitkin · Select what you read carefully. · Approach books as though you were in an airplane selecting a suitable landing site. Proceed with your appraisal from high to low altitude. Read about the book and survey it before deciding upon it. · Review and remember. · Enhance your vocabulary while reading. Take time to look up unknown words, and incorporate them into your reviews. · Leveen advocates three categories of books: o List of candidates: a list of books that you believe you would like to read; this may be a fluid and ever-expanding list. You may choose to categorize your list and include titles that might seem out of the ordinary to you. o Library of candidates: these are books from your list of candidates that you actually own. Leveen recommends keeping as many enticing books around you as you can afford. He quotes Winston Churchill as saying something to the effect that even if we can't be good friends with all these good books, we can at least enjoy their acquaintance. o Living library: this consists of books that you have read, annotated, thought about and reviewed. They are a resource of your own best thinking on subjects of importance to you. These books should be close at hand to refer to and for continued enjoyment. · Expand your living library. · "A notebook is not a miser's sock in which treasure is to be hidden. It is a tool drawer which ought to be opened daily." - Walter Pitkin · Designate a place for newly read (or viewed, in the case of films) material to be reviewed at 1 week, and at 6 months. · To help you remember, keep a reader's journal or an annotated Bookography (list of books that you have read). · Examples of reader's marks found at: www.yourwellreadlife.com/footnote · To get more from the book, write to the author c/o the publisher. Distil what you liked best onto 1 page. Usually quote a line or two you found particularly compelling. Don't request or expect a reply. Keep a copy of your letter inside your book. · "Artists and craftspeople, whose work involves short flashes of intense concentration followed by long hours of less mentally demanding work, often fill these hours with audiobooks." - Leveen. · Some long-haul truckers check out audiobooks by the box. · "Taking charge of your reading life means seeking out the best books for you…collecting titles and the actual books

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marc *Dark Reader of the Woods*

    Predating Goodreads and the explosion of ebooks, this truly "Little Guide" is now outdated. I borrowed it from my public library, hoping it would help me increase my reading appreciation, given the subtitle, "How to get . . . more life from your books". It did not fulfill this goal of mine. The book primarily discussed non-fiction books and classics, with only passing nods to contemporary or popular fiction. The author was owner, CEO and co-founder of the book's publishing imprint. It went throu Predating Goodreads and the explosion of ebooks, this truly "Little Guide" is now outdated. I borrowed it from my public library, hoping it would help me increase my reading appreciation, given the subtitle, "How to get . . . more life from your books". It did not fulfill this goal of mine. The book primarily discussed non-fiction books and classics, with only passing nods to contemporary or popular fiction. The author was owner, CEO and co-founder of the book's publishing imprint. It went through a professional editing process; nevertheless it has the feel of a vanity project. I was frequently reminded of my father excitedly expounding on a topic that he newly learned about in his retirement. It did meet the promises listed on the back jacket copy: How to read 12 more books a year even if you have no more time to read Audiobooks. The answer is audiobooks. Mostly on cassette tape as discussed in this text. Why part of your personal library should be empty and a large part filled with books you want to read This is directed to people who are not already avid readers; an adult who owns only five to eight books is someone who will get the most benefit out of this book. How to get a reading on a book before you read it Directed mainly at non-fiction books, Leveen describes techniques for taking a high-level look at a book and gradually zero in on the specifics of the text. You can do this in a limited fashion with fiction, for example reading the author bio, foreword, acknowledgements, or spoiler-free articles about the book, to hone your expectations before drilling in. When to give up on a book (even if it's a classic) The answer is: by page 50, or any time. I admit to being a poor-but-slowly-improving DNFer. How to create an annotated reading biography These days this is easily accomplished via Goodreads or similar sites. This is why I started using this site and writing reviews, to easily track the books I have read and what I thought about them. The most controversial part of this guide is how the author encourages writing in your books . What a monster! (You can guess which side of this debate I support.) He acknowledges the controversy and favors making notes on the flyleaf and endpapers, in the margins, and possibly enclosing related memorabilia of your experience with the book inside it. His argument: this enhances your memory of the book and builds up its place in your life; also, your children will later appreciate these records of your life. The book, practicing what it preaches, has several blank pages for notes at the back. Another recommendation is to solidify your learning from a book (again, primarily non-fiction) but reviewing it and your notes something like the next day, a week later, a month later and once more after six months, moving it to different shelves each time to keep track of this process. This sounds exhausting. This is more about adult learning then reading appreciation. There is also a chapter on book clubs.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Chris

    Knowing how much I like to read, a friend picked this up for me at a used-book sale. Leveen offers a number of well-meaning tips for getting more out of your reading. The problem, for me at least, is that we see reading somewhat differently. He sets it up as a bit of a chore - albeit an enjoyable one. By working at what you read and how you read it, you will get more value for your reading time. And that's true enough, except that I don't particularly want to work at reading. Reading is somethin Knowing how much I like to read, a friend picked this up for me at a used-book sale. Leveen offers a number of well-meaning tips for getting more out of your reading. The problem, for me at least, is that we see reading somewhat differently. He sets it up as a bit of a chore - albeit an enjoyable one. By working at what you read and how you read it, you will get more value for your reading time. And that's true enough, except that I don't particularly want to work at reading. Reading is something I do to escape. (And yet, as I think about it, I do spend a lot of time on Goodreads organizing what I've read and what I'm going to read.) He spends a fair amount of time encouraging writing in books, storing notes, and letters from the author, and ticket stubs from the movie based on the book, inside its cover. I fall into what he calls the Preservationist camp. I can't bring myself to write in a book; I even take great care not to crack the spine! My problem may be more that Leveen comes across as an evangelist promising intellectual salvation through reading, and even though I might agree with him on most points, such sermonizing tends to rub me the wrong way. I did find the sections on audiobooks and reading groups very interesting. And in the end, he does encourage reading for simple pleasure.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Kaethe Douglas

    I remember Leveen's visit to the prior Readerville. I've been thinking about him and this book since discovering Note:Books, which should appeal to his thinking about how we read. It's good for all of us probably to spend a little time thinking about what we read, and why, and how. There are a million books telling you what to read, but few really explore the mechanical process of reading, and of learning from what we read. What have I learned? Well, if I spent more time reflecting on what I had r I remember Leveen's visit to the prior Readerville. I've been thinking about him and this book since discovering Note:Books, which should appeal to his thinking about how we read. It's good for all of us probably to spend a little time thinking about what we read, and why, and how. There are a million books telling you what to read, but few really explore the mechanical process of reading, and of learning from what we read. What have I learned? Well, if I spent more time reflecting on what I had read, and fitting it into a context in my head, and making notes on it, I would certainly remember more than I do. But, most of my reading is for the pleasure of being sucked into a text and transported. When I'm really enjoying a book I'm not thinking of anything else, I'm just there in it. For me, then, I'm much more likely to have something to say in a review about the nonfiction, while the fiction boils down to "sucked me in", "really sucked me in", or "just barely helped the time pass and I wouldn't have bothered to finish if there had been anything else available to read". The shelves/tags idea is one I hadn't thought much about before. These days I frequently find someone asking me for books on a given subject, or for a specific reader, or other, somewhat narrow criteria. I'm using tags more and more, just to enable me to answer those questions. When the Possum needs to read something science fiction, and I like being able to make title suggestions in the YA/MG area that I loved. It'll be interesting to see what sort of information I want to keep about books in another ten or forty years. Not a book I expected would go in the category of "it changed my life", although I suppose that is one of the delights of reading. That's all I expected it to be, cute maybe but nothing important. Leveen starts by offering up good advice on keeping lists and dealing with recommendations, suggestions helpful to readers who haven���t discovered the Ville, but old hat here. But it���s the second chapter that really grabbed me, Seizing More From Your Reading. Here Leveen starts by offering a variety of useful study tips, and I started taking notes, thinking ahead to the days when the Paragons would need same. Before too long though, I was reflecting on how little I retain from the reading I do. Zooming through a couple of hundred books a year, I find myself unable to remember anything about most of them. Consulting my ���bookograpy��� (Leveen���s word) I can easily make a list of my best reads, because I am wise enough to mark them as I enter them. Although this past year I had so many great books to list, I ended up having to look at Amazon descriptions just to group them meaningfully. To say why they were so good was utterly beyond me. Even the occasional blurbs in my journal were unhelpful to restore memory. Thankfully, Leveen was able to tell me why I wasn���t remembering them, and how to remedy that problem. Already I���m reading in a different way. As an English Lit major I retained enough of the text to write papers and answer exam questions, and out of college and into book reviewing I used post-it flags to highlight important text and took notes. For some reason, once I stopped reading professionally, I also stopped reading attentively. The loss has been felt. How many times since joining the ���Ville have I refrained from posting or even reading discussion on a specific book because I had no comments to make other than ���loved it��� or ���hated it���. Like most folks hereabouts, I���ve been grateful to other posters who not only recommended titles, but were also able to give me a reason for reading it. And still my posts remained content-less. So, this is my new leaf. Henceforth, when asked ���So, are you reading anything great these days?��� I hope to be able to respond with a meaningful answer. Leveen���s book was great to me, for pointing me to an Emerson quote: ���There is creative reading as well as creative writing.��� Now I���m making notes, flagging quotes, and perhaps most importantly, I���m taking breaks during my reading to reflect on what I���ve learned and what it means to me. There will be books I���ll have less to say about. Fiction, for the most part, I read for escapism, not to learn. But at then end of the year I���d like to be able to make a rational statement on why I enjoyed, for example, all the Mallory series. Now all I can remember is that I did.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Roisin

    This book has some great little titbits about being well read, how to organise your to-read list, and how to get the most out of the books you read. 1. Being Well-Read "The more books you read, the more titles and topics you uncover. The more you know, the better you understand how little you really do know" (p.6). Steve is basically saying that being well-read is something we say about other people, and not usually ourselves. Sometimes people have these wanky ideas of what it means to be well-read This book has some great little titbits about being well read, how to organise your to-read list, and how to get the most out of the books you read. 1. Being Well-Read "The more books you read, the more titles and topics you uncover. The more you know, the better you understand how little you really do know" (p.6). Steve is basically saying that being well-read is something we say about other people, and not usually ourselves. Sometimes people have these wanky ideas of what it means to be well-read. Like, you’ve read all the classics, and you actually finished War and Peace, and you understand the deeper meaning of Crime and Punishment. But Steve is like, ‘no siree bob that ain’t fair’. Except Steve actually says that to be well-read is kind of unobtainable. You just need to go out and read books that you enjoy. 2. Organising Your To-Read List I think Steve might be rich because he says your home library should be at least 50% books you haven’t read and might want to read in the future. He’s all about seeing something that takes your fancy, buying it, and saving it for some time in the future. This is a prospect that terrifies me. First of all, where does one get enough money to buy books you’re planning to read someday but might not actually read? And, second, how do you make sure you buy books that are actually going to be decent and not terrible books that you want to throw across the room and regret spending $20 on? The answer to this question was not provided, so I’m skeptical. What I do like is the idea of having a List of Candidates. This is basically a book or spreadsheet where you write a bunch of information about a book – who recommended it to you, the book review you read about it, the movie you saw about it. Apparently, these will be helpful reminders when it comes to decide whether you actually want to read that book after all (Okay, so maybe Steve did answer the question of how not to buy terrible books). According to Google, Goodreads was not around back in 2005 when this book was published. And Goodreads is clearly the answer – it’s a helpful way to classify books that you might want to read. Except, I never write down book reviews or any of that jazz, and maybe I should start doing it. Honestly though, it seems like too much effort. There was one idea I laughed at but later decided was actually kind of cool – buying books to read when you visit certain places. The key point here though is to write down lists of candidates, and don’t feel like you have to read them but rather they’re ideas for what you might want to read sometime later on. 3. How to Get the Most out of Books Steve is all about reflecting on what he reads. He loves writing in books, which he calls “leaving footprints”, writing to authors, and turning books into journals. Once he bought a book of poetry by Emily Dickinson, when he visited her house, and so he collected a leaf from the yard and stuck it in. I thought that was actually a pretty nice idea. 4. Listen to Audiobooks There was a really strange diversion in the middle of the book where Steve went on, and on about speed reading and then devotes 16 pages to the attributes of audiobooks. This is apparently how he got into reading. But I didn’t need to know the history of audiobooks thanks. Overall, this book was kind of good, easy to read and boosted my Goodreads challenge up (which I sorely needed because let's face it, my reading mojo is stuck in 2014). I wouldn't buy it, or recommend it to anyone, but it entertained me for an afternoon.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    A nice book! It's structured rather like an essay, and makes a clear argument prescribing four ways to read more, and read better. The suggestions: (1) choose your books concertedly, and to suit your own tastes and interests, (2) read with intention and engage critically with the text, (3) consider audiobooks because they're great for otherwise "dead" time, and (4) be aware that reading doesn't have to be a solitary venture - your reading of a book can be deeply enhanced by discussing and sharin A nice book! It's structured rather like an essay, and makes a clear argument prescribing four ways to read more, and read better. The suggestions: (1) choose your books concertedly, and to suit your own tastes and interests, (2) read with intention and engage critically with the text, (3) consider audiobooks because they're great for otherwise "dead" time, and (4) be aware that reading doesn't have to be a solitary venture - your reading of a book can be deeply enhanced by discussing and sharing it. There you have it! You don't really have to read this whole book to get the broad strokes, but it's still a pleasant, fast little read. --- Revisited on 2018-11-24 I liked this book better on the second read! I probably read it a bit more carefully this time. One thing I really appreciate about this book is the warm tone - Leveen is welcoming the reader to join him in his love of books, of cultivating self-knowledge, worldly knowledge, as well as curiosity, empathy, and understanding of the authors of the books we read. It's as if he's ushering us into a welcoming and inclusive community of book lovers. One thing that my broad-strokes review didn't capture last time was the little narratives of fellow readers sprinkled throughout. These voices of readers (from famed philosophers to everyday people) offer peeks into the idiosyncratic beliefs and behaviors people have evolved over the course of their book-loving lives. These serve as model how-to's of the pragmatic nuts and bolts of living a well-read life. For example: - keeping a list of candidate books with who recommended the book, when - putting down a book after 50 pages if it hasn't captured you - creating a shelving system to encourage regular review of previously read books - using blank endpages to inscribe one's name, the time/place of reading, a personal index - using the books to hold related memorabilia, so the book becomes a scrapbook - using the left margins for questions and right margins for answers - top margins for own ideas, bottom margins for confusions - reviewing marginalia immediately after finishing a book - taking long solitary walks to digest a book, and sharing ideas with others - keeping oneself accountable to reading a few pages every day to meet book club deadlines - creating a culture of reading aloud to loved ones, and/or reading quietly together These little nuggets give flesh to the bones of the book, and give it its personality! So, all this to say - the book is still worth a read - and can be consumed in an afternoon!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Angie Schmidt

    I’m so glad I read this book. It could be titled “Books are awesome, they bring joy and community and wisdom and challenge and culture to your life. Read more books!” My book reading is on the upswing (40ish books last year, 30ish the year before…) and this book was a wonderful read. Leveen’s tips on selecting books are insightful, his encouragement to engage with your book & not just read and leave is important, his permission to ditch a book (even a popular classic) is freeing and his passion I’m so glad I read this book. It could be titled “Books are awesome, they bring joy and community and wisdom and challenge and culture to your life. Read more books!” My book reading is on the upswing (40ish books last year, 30ish the year before…) and this book was a wonderful read. Leveen’s tips on selecting books are insightful, his encouragement to engage with your book & not just read and leave is important, his permission to ditch a book (even a popular classic) is freeing and his passion for a great story is heartfelt. This book also includes a brief history on book clubs, the author’s reluctance to join in, and the benefits of having a community of readers by your side. I also appreciated the chapter on the read aloud book. My husband has fully embraced audio books as he drives a lot for work but I’ve been reluctant. This book, along with my husband’s experience, has inspired me to get a few to listen to on lazy mornings and too hot afternoons with my kids this summer. In 5 chapters and just over 100 pages there is nothing overwhelming or stressful about this book. I am certain that anyone from emerging adult readers and diligent bibliophiles will gain at least a little joy and a few insightful tips from a fellow reader. With a conclusion like this, what’s not to like… “I hope you read some books for no reason other than pure enjoyment. Let a fine story grab hold of you, let yourself be embraced in this uniquely human pleasure with sweet abandon. As you collect books for learning, also collect books that make you laugh and cry and shudder and forget the real world completely. It is good for us in more ways than we know.”

  8. 4 out of 5

    James

    Leveen is the CEO of Levenger, a company that sells upscale office and reading accoutrements. (I used to see Levenger catalogues everywhere about twenty years ago, but they fell off my radar a long time ago.) The sub-title explains this book very well. Leveen holds forth on how reading can enrich your life, and outlines methods for drawing up systematic reading lists to prevent readers from gobbling up books in a random and scatter-shot manner. He discusses how to find more time to read, how to Leveen is the CEO of Levenger, a company that sells upscale office and reading accoutrements. (I used to see Levenger catalogues everywhere about twenty years ago, but they fell off my radar a long time ago.) The sub-title explains this book very well. Leveen holds forth on how reading can enrich your life, and outlines methods for drawing up systematic reading lists to prevent readers from gobbling up books in a random and scatter-shot manner. He discusses how to find more time to read, how to better understand what you read, when to give up on a dull book, how to improve your memory and vocabulary, speed reading, writing in books, listening to audio-books, and the advantages of book clubs. There were a few aspects of this book that didn't really resonate with me. He said that people in their twenties and thirties tend to read mostly business books, trade publications, and material pertaining to their occupation--and that didn't describe me at all at that age (but then again, I had no real profession). He also is a big fan of writing and making notes in books. He even described Scotch-taping his ticket to Emily Dickinson's house onto a page of a book of her poems! This made my flesh crawl. To me, books are sacred objects, and old books are especially so. I agree with the principle of note-taking, but rather than write on the pages of my books, I instead write on bookmarks of simple, clean white paper, then leave them to mark the pages where I saw the passages in question. Selecting, reading, and studying books has never been difficult for me, and I have already sketched out the basic outlines of my reading for the remainder of my life. That is not to say, however, that this little book didn't give me a few ideas and tips worth considering. If you are one of those who is bewildered about what to read and how, you might want to give this book a look.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    Read this book to enrich all your reading experiences! The author, Steve Leveen, is the CEO of Levenger's (www.levenger.com) -- "Tools for Serious Readers" and also author of the blog called "The Well-Read Life" (http://blog.wellreadlife.com/), which I also recommend. Leveen uses a warm, intelligent writing style to make this book come alive with thought-provoking and truly helpful tips and insights for getting more out of--and retaining more from--your reading. He includes making better reading Read this book to enrich all your reading experiences! The author, Steve Leveen, is the CEO of Levenger's (www.levenger.com) -- "Tools for Serious Readers" and also author of the blog called "The Well-Read Life" (http://blog.wellreadlife.com/), which I also recommend. Leveen uses a warm, intelligent writing style to make this book come alive with thought-provoking and truly helpful tips and insights for getting more out of--and retaining more from--your reading. He includes making better reading choices and ways to become a more intentional reader. One "Aha" for me was his conviction that you should have a great many books on your shelf that you have NOT read yet. He likened it to having a well-stocked pantry: when you get hungry, it's so satisfying to have some nice choices! He also supported giving yourself permission to stop reading a book that doesn't resonate. Life's too short to waste on a book that's not right for YOU. He offered a lively discussion about "Footprint Leavers" and "Preservationists" (referring to those who like to write notes in their own books and those who don't). He is the former, but he doesn't pass judgment. This book actually made me feel excitement and anticipation that I can only liken to those wonderful feelings as a child when I was waked up before dawn to get in the car and go on a trip...in this case, a trip to a more well-read life.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Dolly

    I just loved this little book. The author captured all the joys of an experience (reading, including the choosing of books, the owning of books, the writing in books, the talking about books, the recollections of books and of course, the actual reading of books) that I had not seen captured so beautifully before. He makes a very convincing argument that 1) people much busier and more critical to the world's functioning than me still make time to read, 2) purposeful and active reading underlies p I just loved this little book. The author captured all the joys of an experience (reading, including the choosing of books, the owning of books, the writing in books, the talking about books, the recollections of books and of course, the actual reading of books) that I had not seen captured so beautifully before. He makes a very convincing argument that 1) people much busier and more critical to the world's functioning than me still make time to read, 2) purposeful and active reading underlies purposeful and active living, and 3) listening to books IS reading. The author totally captured my journey as an adult learner and reader (I had no idea that I was not alone on this journey of discovery) as well as the sublime joy of being in book love. The introduction was such an energizing read as it put words and form around thoughts that I didn't know that I had (and it describes that feeling, in fact!). The later chapters are more pragmatic. The chapters on note taking and retention were particularly useful to me and I have already begun experimenting with these strategies. I notice that the books reviews on goodreads are mixed. As for me, it's an easy 5 stars ... it was the perfect book at the perfect time.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Rick Davis

    I love books, and I love listening to other people who love books. Steve Leveen loves books, so this is a no-brainer for me. I really enjoyed his ideas on how to get the most out of your reading. Some of his ideas I already employ and some I'm going to try. I love books, and I love listening to other people who love books. Steve Leveen loves books, so this is a no-brainer for me. I really enjoyed his ideas on how to get the most out of your reading. Some of his ideas I already employ and some I'm going to try.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ryan

    A small book filled with some great ideas on finding books you love, getting more out of those books, finding time for those books, and sharing that love with others. Really enjoyed it, and I am now looking to start my own book club.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tanya

    I really enjoyed this book. I liked how he said to have a "reading candidates" list. This gives you freedom to move from book to book and not feel like your blowing your plan. I am going to try his method of keeping track of books you want to read. You create a reading candidates list by subject heading, which should be titled with things that are appealing to you, and you keep a running list of things you would like to read. I have many of these lists, but they are spread across a million journ I really enjoyed this book. I liked how he said to have a "reading candidates" list. This gives you freedom to move from book to book and not feel like your blowing your plan. I am going to try his method of keeping track of books you want to read. You create a reading candidates list by subject heading, which should be titled with things that are appealing to you, and you keep a running list of things you would like to read. I have many of these lists, but they are spread across a million journals. So having them in one book dedicated for just that purpose is a great idea! He recommends that you buy the books on your reading candidate list (and, what reader doesn't do that already!) He also advocates keeping a reading journal. Over all a great, short read!

  14. 5 out of 5

    John

    This is a good short read. I read it from time to time as I was hitting the pillow. Even though it can easily be read in a one sitting, I recommend a book like this should be chewed and slowly digested. It lead me to new books that I want to read and to ponder books that I have read and the the reasons I picked them up. Mr. Leveen has some nice insights into why we should read and how to read. I enjoyed his references and quotations from authors throughout history.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jodi Z

    A great guide to re-evaluating your personal approach to reading. Includes discussion on a variety of topics including: to mark or not to mark, to own or to borrow, to read or to listen. And he makes a case for both sides of each of those topics. I think the thing I appreciated the most was the permission to not finish a book if it doesn't work for you. To paraphrase, why waste your time on a book that doesn't speak to you when there are so many wonderful ones to enjoy? I also appreciated his su A great guide to re-evaluating your personal approach to reading. Includes discussion on a variety of topics including: to mark or not to mark, to own or to borrow, to read or to listen. And he makes a case for both sides of each of those topics. I think the thing I appreciated the most was the permission to not finish a book if it doesn't work for you. To paraphrase, why waste your time on a book that doesn't speak to you when there are so many wonderful ones to enjoy? I also appreciated his suggestions for studying and getting more out of your reading. The subtitle says it all: "how to get more books in your life and more life from your books." A great read for anyone--if you love books, you'll love them even more, and probably be willing to try a wider variety. If you haven't discovered the joy of reading (you probably aren't reading this review...), this book just might be the thing to lead you there. I love that he doesn't even pretend to be the authority but instead makes a solid case for becoming your own authority on what you "should" read. All in all, a very refreshing and inviting book. Why, then, did it take me so long to finish it? Because as I read it, I found myself getting more excited about the books I had lying around and would put it down to become reacquainted with them. This would make a great gift for the ones in your life who can't figure out why you always have your nose in a book. (And it is short enough not to be intimidating to those who could benefit most from it.)

  16. 4 out of 5

    Chung Chin

    The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life by Steve Leveen is a five-star gem about our reading life. From the beginning till the end, Steve Leveen gently encourages his readers to read more and let us know that it's OK to close that book we are struggling to finish. I love it. In this book, readers will feel as if they have finally found an able guide - one who is wise, and generous in passing on his wisdom - to show them how to read more, and get more of their reading. Throughout this little guide The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life by Steve Leveen is a five-star gem about our reading life. From the beginning till the end, Steve Leveen gently encourages his readers to read more and let us know that it's OK to close that book we are struggling to finish. I love it. In this book, readers will feel as if they have finally found an able guide - one who is wise, and generous in passing on his wisdom - to show them how to read more, and get more of their reading. Throughout this little guide, Steve Leveen gently urge us to actively create our List of Candidates, tell us it's OK to have a bookshelves of unread books and goes through some of the subjects on reading such as speed reading (is it effective? should we take up courses to learn it?), making notes in the book (preservationist vs. marginalist), and so on. Steve Leveen firmly, but gently let us know which camp he is on when going through these subjects, and he does so in a fair manner by presenting arguments from both ends impartially. I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking to get more out of their reading life, and more reading into their life.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Christina Pilkington

    If you love to read, than I think you would enjoy this short little book that discusses what is means to be well-read, a definition the author gives for someone was immerses themselves in the reading experience constantly and frequently, no matter what genre they are reading. I came away with quite a few new tips that I would like to try in the future. I especially liked the author's suggestion of, while you are traveling, reading books that take place in the same location. I like the idea of as If you love to read, than I think you would enjoy this short little book that discusses what is means to be well-read, a definition the author gives for someone was immerses themselves in the reading experience constantly and frequently, no matter what genre they are reading. I came away with quite a few new tips that I would like to try in the future. I especially liked the author's suggestion of, while you are traveling, reading books that take place in the same location. I like the idea of asking the readers in your life, both friends and those you just meet, what their favorite books are and keeping a recommendations journal with column for their name, the date they suggested the book, and the date you read that book. I also like the idea of buying books from different places in your travels and keeping momentums of that place inside the book, such as a leaf, postcard or other item. This was a great little read!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kelli Oliver George

    This book about reading books. While that topic can be seen as boring, this was worth a quick perusal. The author had some great tips on how to improve one's reading life - he talked about joining book clubs, the oral tradition of books that support the NEED and validity for audio books and giving up on books if they are not tickling your fancy. He wrote about giving up on books that are not enjoyable - this was very helpful to me because I have wasted hours of my life reading BAD BOOKS. He also This book about reading books. While that topic can be seen as boring, this was worth a quick perusal. The author had some great tips on how to improve one's reading life - he talked about joining book clubs, the oral tradition of books that support the NEED and validity for audio books and giving up on books if they are not tickling your fancy. He wrote about giving up on books that are not enjoyable - this was very helpful to me because I have wasted hours of my life reading BAD BOOKS. He also believes it is okay to write in the margins of books because it helps to retain the knowledge gained from this - BAH. I hate writing in books, but I do support his notion of retention by using post-its. He also is a full-on supporter of keeping loads of Unreads around your house, you never know what you will be in the mood for, right? RIGHT.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Eohlson

    This book matches so closely to what GoodReads.com provides that I started to wonder if the author was involved with the site. Not that I could tell. The author is the CEO and co-founder (with his wife) of Levenger. I found a number of recommendations in the book to be good, or at least interesting. He covers the gamut of having a personal library, how to study, leaving notes in books (Footprint Leavers) or not (Preservationists), and book groups. A number of source books were mentioned in the tex This book matches so closely to what GoodReads.com provides that I started to wonder if the author was involved with the site. Not that I could tell. The author is the CEO and co-founder (with his wife) of Levenger. I found a number of recommendations in the book to be good, or at least interesting. He covers the gamut of having a personal library, how to study, leaving notes in books (Footprint Leavers) or not (Preservationists), and book groups. A number of source books were mentioned in the text and this book has an extensive bibliography and index. I would have ranked this book a tiny bit higher if it would have had just a few more practical tips, but that was just me. I still think it's chock full of good ideas. I originally found this book via J.D. Meier's Sources of Insight blog: http://sourcesofinsight.com/2008/01/1...

  20. 4 out of 5

    John Bails

    A worthwhile read. A reminder of why we read. Offers suggestions on how to plan one's reading. Challenges some myths surrounding reading. It was published in 2005, so it hasn't been available for a long time. My thought was that every reading teacher should review it. Perhaps even assign it to students who are reluctant readers. His chapter on audio books and listening is making me think about expanding to this option. I don't own a walkman and I try to take the train rather than drive to work s A worthwhile read. A reminder of why we read. Offers suggestions on how to plan one's reading. Challenges some myths surrounding reading. It was published in 2005, so it hasn't been available for a long time. My thought was that every reading teacher should review it. Perhaps even assign it to students who are reluctant readers. His chapter on audio books and listening is making me think about expanding to this option. I don't own a walkman and I try to take the train rather than drive to work so cassettes don't work as well. But I do think an audio book along with the actual book might enhance the reading experience- especially with dialect. Might also be good with poetry or Shakespear or Canterberry Tales. It's only 109 pages. I plan to keep it handy as a reference and a reminder.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    This is great book for avid readers, wanna-be readers and used-to-be readers. It's a very interesting, non-dry how-to book that aims at helping people find more time to read and enjoy it more. While there are lots of tips for getting more (and retaining more) out of the non-ficton you read, he also talks a lot about how important it is to choose fiction that you really LOVE. He made me realize that there are whole lifetimes worth of AMAZING books for me out there and i shouldn't spend one minute This is great book for avid readers, wanna-be readers and used-to-be readers. It's a very interesting, non-dry how-to book that aims at helping people find more time to read and enjoy it more. While there are lots of tips for getting more (and retaining more) out of the non-ficton you read, he also talks a lot about how important it is to choose fiction that you really LOVE. He made me realize that there are whole lifetimes worth of AMAZING books for me out there and i shouldn't spend one minute reading something that doesn't grip me because life is just too short! A quick read that will help you enjoy your lazy book days, as well as your studious intelligent days, even more!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sylvie

    Explores desire to read more and provides concrete suggestions on how to do so. Discusses value of audiobooks to increase "reading," especially duing times when it is not possible/convenient to read a book (while driving, doing housework, etc.). Includes suggestions for developing reading lists, expanding and purging personal libraries. Suggest keeping a "bookography" or annotated lists of books read. Additional discussion of writing in books, passing them on to others and tips on maintaining a Explores desire to read more and provides concrete suggestions on how to do so. Discusses value of audiobooks to increase "reading," especially duing times when it is not possible/convenient to read a book (while driving, doing housework, etc.). Includes suggestions for developing reading lists, expanding and purging personal libraries. Suggest keeping a "bookography" or annotated lists of books read. Additional discussion of writing in books, passing them on to others and tips on maintaining a personal a personal library.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Leslie Jem

    I found this book where a customer had abandoned it (I am a bookseller) and immediately checked out a copy from the library and read it within 24 hours. The author encourages readers to categorize books not just by read and to read, but in categories that make sense to the individual. I have reviewed and categorized my own reading much more since reading this book. Discovering this website has helped me create and share the kinds of lists I wanted to start after reading this book.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Gayle

    Steve Leveen is the co-founder of Levenger, a catalog founded on offering "tools for serious readers," and the author of this How To book about reading. I found his voice oddly off-putting, rather brisk and energetic, like a motivational speaker; not at all what I'm looking for when I read about reading. So I quickly skimmed the book for useful information, which I found. But that is not enough to recommend it. Steve Leveen is the co-founder of Levenger, a catalog founded on offering "tools for serious readers," and the author of this How To book about reading. I found his voice oddly off-putting, rather brisk and energetic, like a motivational speaker; not at all what I'm looking for when I read about reading. So I quickly skimmed the book for useful information, which I found. But that is not enough to recommend it.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Amit

    This book convinced me to join goodreads.com. My key learnings were: (a) To plan what I want to read (b) To take notes and bookmark (c) To feel OK about skimming through books (d) To spend some time thinking about a book just read (e) Organizing my personal library along - books read/to-read (f) To, perhaps, join a book club

  26. 5 out of 5

    William Demaree

    My second time reading this book, trying to pick up more ideas for reading more and in greater depth. At the very least, it's nice to read something by someone who clearly loves reading with all of its intellectual and sensual pleasures. BTW, Levengers is my favorite mail order store--the Leveens specialize in all kinds of nifty tools for readers and writers. I'm addicted to my Book Bungee. My second time reading this book, trying to pick up more ideas for reading more and in greater depth. At the very least, it's nice to read something by someone who clearly loves reading with all of its intellectual and sensual pleasures. BTW, Levengers is my favorite mail order store--the Leveens specialize in all kinds of nifty tools for readers and writers. I'm addicted to my Book Bungee.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Michael Hatcher

    An excellent little book about the benefits or reading and suggestions for maximizing that value to you from books. It doesn't take long to read, but can have an amazing impact on comprehension and retention. A slight spoiler...........Leveen comes down strongly in favor of making books your own through annotating, highlighting, "dog-earing" pages - whatever works best for you. An excellent little book about the benefits or reading and suggestions for maximizing that value to you from books. It doesn't take long to read, but can have an amazing impact on comprehension and retention. A slight spoiler...........Leveen comes down strongly in favor of making books your own through annotating, highlighting, "dog-earing" pages - whatever works best for you.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kricket

    interesting tips for bibliophiles. i already knew a lot of these things, and steve leveen is a little cheesy. but i enjoyed being reassured that it's ok to put down a book you don't like, and to have a long, long, LONG list of potential "candidates" to read. interesting tips for bibliophiles. i already knew a lot of these things, and steve leveen is a little cheesy. but i enjoyed being reassured that it's ok to put down a book you don't like, and to have a long, long, LONG list of potential "candidates" to read.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    The author repeats the same mundane things over and over, considering he keeps talking about how a book should keep your attention you would think his tone of voice would be more enticing. Did take away ideas, to improve vocabulary and memorize short poems.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Faith-Anne

    The author is really patronizing about reading. He basically makes you feel as if you've committed a deadly sin if you write in a book's margins. I hate authors that do that. The author is really patronizing about reading. He basically makes you feel as if you've committed a deadly sin if you write in a book's margins. I hate authors that do that.

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