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PLANET BOOK PODCAST

Season 3, Episode 4

Confessions of a Reader

October 7, 2021

In this episode, Charity and Breea reveal their personal reader secrets and habits. Book recommendations for Middle Grade and YA readers.

Titles Mentioned in This Episode

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Transcript

Charity 0:01 Welcome to the Planet Book podcast. I'm your host Charity.

Breea 0:06 And I'm Breea.

Charity 0:07 On each episode you'll hear us talking about our favorite tween and teen books. Thanks for joining us today. On this episode, we're going to be talking about librarian/ reader confessions. The things that maybe we don't always tell people but--

Breea 0:24 The skeletons in our closet will be revealed.

Charity 0:26 The skeletons on our bookshelf maybe.

Breea 0:29 Oh, yes, even better comparison.

Charity 0:31 All right, so I wrote, I made a few notes for myself so I wouldn't forget. I can't wait to hear what yours are, Breea. So tell me all, Breea.

Breea 0:38 Okay, I'll start off with one. So, here's a big one confession. I don't always finish the books that I start. So I know that there are a lot of people like it doesn't even matter. Like this is how bad this confession is. Some people like okay, that makes sense. Like you're chapter two in, you're not feeling it, like that's okay put the book aside. I could be two chapters away from the ending and I could be like, nah. As soon as I stop caring, or as soon as like, if there is a reveal that I am not satisfied with, if there's something that I just don't like that happened, or I'm just kind of like, not feeling it. I just keep going. It bothers so many people.

Charity 1:28 Wow. I'm kind of OCD. And so you saying that you get that close to the end and don't finish, like I'm just cringing, like, oh my gosh, how can you even do that? I give a book, if I'm reading a book, I'll give it three chapters. If I'm listening to an audio book, I'll give it, like, maybe an hour or two before like, if I'm not feeling it, I'll just move on. But if I get that far into it, I'm finishing it.

Breea 1:50 I feel like when I went to school, you were kind of forced to always, like, finish those books, even if you did not enjoy them because you had to read them for your projects, for your essays, for you know, just to be in on the conversation. And so now that I'm not in school, if a story just stops clicking with me, I'm like, I do this for enjoyment. Because you know, I do that with like TV shows too. If like there's the last episode I watched or the last two, I'm just not feeling this, this character arc or this plotline anymore. I'm like, oh, let's see what's on next. Like I'm always a big believer in life's too short to finish a book that you're not enjoying.

Charity 2:33 So okay, so I know we're here to talk about books. But are you saying that if you get close to finishing like a season--

Breea 2:41 Yeah

Charity 2:42 You won't finish that season. If you're like, two episodes left, you're not gonna finish?

Breea 2:45 Charity, I'm the type of person that will drink a water from a water bottle and leave like a sip left.

Charity 2:53 No, you're one of those people? Oh my gosh.

Breea 2:56 I drive my husband crazy. Like, and so we'll be watching a series together. And he'll be like, do you want to finish this? I'm like, no. And he's like, you can't do this to me.

Charity 3:08 That's, I'm just, no shame. But that's terrible. I don't know what to say.

Breea 3:14 It's a confession for a reason.

Charity 3:17 True. True. Well, I feel like that was a big one. I, okay, so this one is kind of a small one. But I feel like it's kind of weird, but I've recently come across people who said the same thing. I am a bookmark hoarder. As in, I have a very large collection of bookmarks, probably 100 or so. Some of them I've had from my childhood, like I picked them up at my school library when I was 10 and I still have them and no one can use them. So, you know, everybody reads in my house, but I don't let them use my bookmarks.

Breea 3:50 But you use your bookmarks, right?

Charity 3:52 I use them, I use them.

Breea 3:53 Okay, it's not like just a random collection and you're still using, like, receipt paper?

Charity 3:58 No, I don't believe in using other things. It's like I have all these bookmarks. But certain bookmarks go with certain books so, like, the bookmark has to like match or coordinate with the book in some way.

Breea 4:08 Oh, that's interesting.

Charity 4:10 It's weird I realize but--

Breea 4:12 I am definitely the person, this shows our differences again just like the last episode, that will like chew a piece of gum and be like, I've got a wrapper leftover. Nice, bookmark. And there it is.

Charity 4:25 No. Who even are you, Breea?

Breea 4:29 Another confession, it's a side confession for you.

Charity 4:32 Oh my goodness. You're a librarian. What is happening?

Breea 4:36 There's literally no excuse. I love how this turned into my confession. I'm sorry. Literally no excuse because we have the cutest bookmarks offered at Springfield-Greene County Library.

Charity 4:48 We do, we do.

Breea 4:49 Like especially with the kids who have come up with their--

Charity 4:53 Yeah, the bookmark design contest. You're surrounded by cute bookmarks.

Breea 4:58 And they're so cute and I collect them every year and I'm still using that sticky note that I saw to the left of me that had, like, one number on it or like some math equation.

Charity 5:12 Let me ask you this. Do you dog ear pages?

Breea 5:14 No.

Charity 5:16 Okay, okay.

Breea 5:18 No, no, no.

Charity 5:20 Only monsters do that.

Breea 5:20 That's too far.

Charity 5:22 Do you, like, mark up your books? Do you write in them? Do you make notes, do you do anything like that?

Breea 5:27 When I was in school, and it was like a pre-owned book. Like, if I buy a book, like, brand new off the Barnes and Noble shelf, there's no way I'm going to be marking in it like a journal. Like, so only if it's kind of already had its use, you can see it's kind of worn, the pages are a little yellow and I need it for research will I mark it up. But otherwise, I like to keep my books clean. Even though sometimes they have receipt papers sticking out of them. The pages are going to be white and pristine for as long as possible.

Charity 6:02 Do you loan your books out?

Breea Actually, I do. My friends and I because I have a group of friends that I met in school and so they're all English people too and we try to rotate out books. You know, just as often as possible. And my friends are always so willing. I think that's part of the reason why I am because they're always like, oh, you like that book in a series, let me give you, like, the next one. Please read them. And so I'm like, oh, they're so trusting with me I should be so trusting with them. And so that's how. Are you a book lender?

Charity 6:35 I am not. I do not lend my books out.

Breea 6:37 I mean, that makes sense because you don't lend out the bookmarks so why would you?

Charity 6:42 No, I don't. Someone recently loaned me their hard back, pristine copy of the Midnight Library, which is adult fiction.

Breea 6:49 Okay.

Charity 6:50 Because it has a ton of holds on it. Everybody's trying to read it. And I really wanted to read it. And I was like, oh my gosh, they're giving me this book. I'm gonna take it home, you know, and I was just so careful. But I couldn't believe it because I was like, I wouldn't have lent mine to you. Because I don't lend my books out. I just, I don't and I can't. They're like my precious babies. And no, no one can read my books. No one can use my bookmarks.

Breea 7:17 Hopefully, my friends aren't listening to this. And they're like, what I'm about to say. But my friends might be a little bit more hesitant if they know, like, where some of their books end up. Not saying I put them in bad situations, like, I'm gonna read you in the bathtub, but--

Charity 7:31 Okay, let's say this is a good confession, though. Where is the craziest place that you have taken a book?

Breea 7:37 Oh, taken a book.

Charity 7:39 Yeah, like, tried reading a book or you know, like, I've taken a book into the pool. There's a pool in my neighborhood, I will be on my floaty in the pool. I will be in the bathtub with a book.

Breea 7:49 I am too klutzy and too accident prone to even try that. But often, what I was gonna say is, like, if my friends are like having me borrow their books. I always have to have a book in my car. I don't know why. It's like, you know how, I don't know if you've read, um, oh, why can't I think of the name? It's such a popular book, Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

Charity 8:14 I have read that series, loved it.

Breea 8:17 I always have to have my blanket in my car because Hitchhiker's Guide told me to. But I also have to just have a book in general, because if you're stranded out somewhere, and you have your blanket, you also have to have a book, something to read. And so a lot of my friends' books end up just in the backseat of my car. I cover them up with the blanket. So like, no, like, it's not sun damaged or anything, but they're just riding with me.

Charity 8:38 Oh, that's funny.

Breea 8:40 But I think when it comes to, like, the craziest place, I've taken a book, probably a beach. Like, it's not super crazy. I'm not gonna get it too close to the water because I know me. But yeah, just reading it at a beach. But I can't really, I'm not really good at reading it at places that are like sandy, watery. I've tried it and I get so distracted, because I'm like, I'm gonna drop it. I'm gonna drop it, it's gonna be dirty. It's gonna, yeah, and so then I don't get very far. I'm kind of boring when it comes to where I read. It's gonna be in my room, in my house, library.

Charity 9:16 I always like to take a book when I travel. And I'll take my tablet and read things on my tablet, but I do take like an actual book. And one time when I was going through the TSA line, and they went through my bags. And they were like, you've got books? Who reads actual books? She's like, you know, you can download things.

Breea 9:39 What in the world?

Charity 9:40 Not everything can be downloaded.

Breea 9:41 And who says that? What kind of non book lover--

Charity 9:45 Yeah, I don't need your judgment, TSA agent. Just pat me down and send me through.

Breea 9:49 I want that to be a shirt.

Charity 9:51 All right, well, one of my other confessions, and so I do a lot of audiobooks. Half of the books that I read probably at this point are audiobooks. I am not a big fan of male narrators.

Breea 10:01 Really?

Charity 10:02 I don't mind female narrators doing male voices. But there's something about a male voice trying to do like a female character that I just--

Breea 10:10 Oh, when they go higher pitched?

Charity 10:12 I just don't like it. And so that's almost always like, I'll look to see who the narrator is. Oh, it's a guy, no, I'm really not gonna listen to that. There are a few, a couple of guy narrators, male narrators that I like. Their voices are okay. Like Wil Wheaton, the actor. He narrates things, and he has such a wonderful voice. I love him. But generally, I don't like male narrators.

Breea 10:34 I just, I need to listen to audiobooks more in general, because I'm always driving back and forth to work and driving back and forth to different places. But for audiobooks for me, I zone out so easily when I'm driving, which is, that's a confession, just a road confession. That's not even a book confession. It's like I'm driving and zoned out.

Charity 10:57 Well, on that same vein, here's another confession. I, later this week, will be taking my car to get my CD player repaired because I have some library CDs stuck in it.

Breea 11:07 Oh, no, that's a big confession. How did they get stuck there?

Charity 11:12 This is the second time that has happened with this vehicle. And my husband was like, are you gonna get this fixed again? I was like I have to, because I have to listen to audiobooks in my car. So I'm going crazy. And I've been trying to listen to things on my phone, but it's not the same. And I've renewed this audio book as many times as I can renew it. So it's like once he gets the CDs out, like, I still gotta finish listening to this audiobook.

Breea 11:34 Wait, what audiobook is it?

Charity 11:37 It's an adult fiction title by Ruth Ware. And I'm totally blanking on the title because it's been a while since I've listened to it because the CDs are stuck in my car. But it's like a thriller and with an unreliable narrator. I love those kinds of stories.

Breea 11:52 Oh, same.

Charity 11:53 It's really good. And so there's a confession that things like this happen even to librarians. And so there you go.

Breea 12:00 And librarians totally understand when stuff like that happens.

Charity 12:05 We get it. We have all been there. I've thought I had lost books a couple of times. I thought I was gonna have to pay for them. I did find them in the end. But, wooo, if you're really a reader, things like that happen.

Breea 12:16 Okay, next confession over here. This almost feels like you're not allowed to admit this when you're a librarian or when you study books, like, for almost your whole life, or you're just so dedicated to writing. But I find myself in reading slumps.

Charity 12:32 Oh, yes.

Breea 12:34 Majorly. And it makes me feel, like, I make myself feel bad about it, which doesn't make sense. I shouldn't, like, it just happens. But, for example, last year, I really shouldn't have been hard on myself for last year, because last year was hard for a lot of people. But I didn't meet my Goodreads goal last year. And I thought I'd have all this time in the world to read when we were in shut down. I was like, okay, this is fun, I've got this whole TBR pile, I'm gonna make my way through it. I could not, I could not get myself motivated to invest time into any standalones or any series or anything like that. And so, and that's happened to me, that happened to me after school as well where you know, you read and read and read and then all of a sudden, you have to teach yourself how to read for enjoyment and not just studying again. So I have some tips, though.

Charity 13:30 Oh, okay.

Breea 13:31 If you're interested in getting out of reader slumps because I have to teach myself that it's okay to be in reader slumps, and you can pull yourself out of them. Or you can just naturally wait for them to pass because they will. And you will find a series that really appeals to you again, or a book that you're like, whoo, that intrigues me. It'll come back. And it's okay. But something that really helps me is first off reading graphic novels or manga. Because the pictures help add that variety. They're very quick to get through. It's heavily dialogue based, but it's very, like, you can only have so many words in a panel anyway, because that's just the rule of the graphic novel. And so you can get through those very quickly and feel more accomplished. So I always love to pick up a graphic novel, even if I don't enjoy it. I'm like, oh, I still got through it. I think it's one of those books that you can get through it, even if you're not enjoying it just because the art might be super compelling, and you still want to see it to the end. So other things that help are like flash fiction, short fiction that you can find online or in collections. This isn't like a young adult book, but B.J. Novak is known for his children's book, The Book With No Pictures. But he also has a short story collection that I think is incredible. And just reading collections like that help because it's like short little snippets, like oh, I got through a story, I can get through another one. Even TV shows kind of helped me get through reader slumps. Which people are like, what? What are you talking about? How would watching a TV show help you with a reader's slump? But sometimes I find a different version of storytelling kind of helps, like, you know, you take a break from this sort of medium for a while, and you try out this medium, and then you can come back. And it's kind of like, you know, if you're eating the same type of food over and over again, sometimes you're gonna get bored of that flavor, even if it's like your favorite flavor in the world. And so trying to like cleanse your palate and have something else and then coming back to that flavor that you love, and that you're so familiar with is good every now and then. So.

Charity 15:39 Yes, those are great tips. I think anyone who really reads a lot have all experienced reader slumps. I just went through one a while back, and it was actually some adult fiction titles that kind of brought me out of it. I'm in a pretty good middle grade reader slump right now. So anyone listening, if you've got recommendations on a good middle grade title, send them our way.

Breea 16:03 Oh, yeah.

Charity 16:04 Sometimes I just have to step away and, like, just not read. I went through, like, probably six months, a while back, where I just, I didn't really read much. But I like your suggestion of reading graphic novels. I've gotten into those a lot more, and you feel like, oh, yeah, I just, you can read those so quickly, and you really feel like you're accomplishing something as a reader. I'll read poetry for the same reason.

Breea 16:24 Oh, yeah.

Charity 16:25 Because you can get through that really quickly, or like a novel in verse. And so those feel good to, like, get through and, you know--

Breea 16:32 Absolutely.

Charity 16:33 I try not to give myself, you know, make myself feel too bad about going through that reader slump because it happens.

Breea 16:40 Absolutely.

Charity 16:41 And it's okay. Breea, this has been a very enlightening conversation. Each conversation we have, I learn more and more about you. Thanks for joining us for another episode of the Planet Book podcast. Check out the library's website at the library.org for these and other great book recommendations. And follow us on Facebook for the latest news and events. This has been a production of the Springfield-Greene County Library District. Thanks for listening.

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