When I was younger, I baulked at the idea of reading more than one book at a time. It felt like cheating on the book I was reading. How could I give it anything less than my full attention? It was one and one alone for me.
However, once I started living on my own after college, I found myself accidentally reading several books at once. I always had a fiction book to read, but then I started reading a non-fiction book at the same time, plus a book I was reviewing, and then an audiobook I was listening to during my walks or workouts.
Without even realising it, I was doing what I said I’d never do. And surprisingly, it didn’t make me enjoy the books any less. In fact, I loved having a variety of things to read. I never got “tired” of one book, but having multiple genres at my disposal only increased my excitement to read each book. Plus, this practice allowed me to read more widely. I found that I appreciated non-fiction more when I had a fiction book to escape to as my imagination began to crave something more fantastical. I could pay more attention to audiobooks when I listened to them in short chunks rather than all at once.
I learned the art of reading several books at once – and what do you know, they didn’t all get mixed up together in my head! Nowadays, I’m usually reading four books at any given time. Fiction, general non-fiction, Christian non-fiction, and a fiction or non-fiction audiobook or podcast, depending on how I’m feeling. Bible Thinker, Writing Made Easy, The Creative Penn, and Writing Excuses are some of my favourite podcasts. Here are the books/audiobooks currently on my plate:
- The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson (fiction)
- Swipe: The Science Behind Why We Don’t Finish What We Start (non-fiction, ARC for Reedsy Discovery)
- The Crucified Life by A.W. Tozer (Christian non-fiction)
- Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen (fiction audiobook)
I’d like to add poetry to my lineup this year, specifically Romantic European poetry (which is undoubtedly my favourite). I think poetry isn’t appreciated nearly enough nowadays and I want to get back into the habit of reading it as I did in college.
What are you reading right now? Do you read more than one book at a time? Let me know in the comments!
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2 thoughts on “Why You Should Read More than One Book at a Time”
I always read multiple books at the same time. Usually have a couple of fiction and non fiction hard copies, then some on my Kindle, and lately I’ve been listening to audiobooks quite a bit. I had to get into that a little; it’s not the same as reading to me, but it’s good, too.
I do have the tendency to abandon books this way, or leave them alone for longer than they deserve.
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That last part is very true! It often takes longer to read books this way.
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