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So Many Books, So Little Time: A Year of Passionate Reading Paperback – 31 Oct 2004


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So Many Books, So Little Time: A Year of Passionate Reading + The Year of Reading Dangerously: How Fifty Great Books Saved My Life + Howards End is on the Landing: A year of reading from home
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Product details

  • Paperback: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley Publishing Group; Reprint edition (31 Oct 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425198197
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425198193
  • Product Dimensions: 14.1 x 1.7 x 21.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 209,836 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Miss E. Potten on 17 Jan 2009
Format: Paperback
Sara Nelson sets out with noble intentions. A devout reader during both her working and personal life, she decides to set herself the goal of reading a book a week for a year, writing a journal of her bookish habits, reading choices and general reflections as she goes. From idle moments and snatched pages to family vacations and whole insomnia-ridden nights, this book is the resulting chronicle of her project.

This is definitely a book lover's book - which may explain why I found this second reading so much more enjoyable than the first, a few years ago. I have more bookish knowledge and hundreds more books' worth of reading experience behind me these days, so I appreciated more of Nelson's choices and reading reactions this time around. I've heard of more of the books, read some of the same titles, and am more immersed in the literary world online, and thus I found I had significantly more to relate to.

In a way, reading Nelson's book is a little like being part of a book blog, a book club or an online reading community - it's made all the more enjoyable by the fact that in the back of your mind there's a quiet chant of "One of us, one of us" making you feel like a part of the action. I recognised many of the author's bookish habits as my own - the myriad ways of choosing books, the building of book piles and compiling of lists, and the art of reading `just one more chapter' at night until your eyes start to close of their own accord - and I recognised too the reluctance to loan out books, the way book hype can be more offputting than appealing, and the discomfort that stems from a friend enthusiastically lending you an 'amazing' book that you really don't want to read.
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51 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Lawyeraau HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 12 Feb 2005
Format: Hardcover
When I first heard about this book, I was intrigued by its premise, as I never go anywhere without at least one or two books in my bag and am a confirmed book lover and avid reader. If I go on vacation, I pack a bag just for the dozen or so books that I simply must take along with me. I am most comfortable when I am surrounded by books. In fact, I look forward to retirement, so that I will have more time to read. I simply love to read! I cannot imagine a world without books and, quite frankly, I have never understood people who say that they do not care to read.
So, this book seemed to be right up my alley. Well, the author does not disappoint, as she takes the reader along with her on her very personal journey. Her goal, not an overly ambitious one, is a book a week for fifty-two weeks. She does not necessarily stick to her list of books, and she meanders along, changing course in mid-stream sometimes, as many of us so often do. Yet, she always keeps up an entertaining discourse on the book that she is reading or has read, remarking upon its place in her world. She interweaves snippets of her personal life with her thoughts on those books that she reads. She talks about authors and the impact that some of their work has had on her, as well as her reading likes and dislikes.
The author writes in a light and breezy conversational tone, so that, at times, it almost seems as if one old friend were talking to another about some books she had enjoyed. I was delighted to discover that we liked many of the same books for many of the same reasons. Within the pages of this book, I also happily discovered some new titles that piqued my interest.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Janie U TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 9 Feb 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of the recommendations that the author makes in this book is that you should give up on a book if you are not enjoying it rather than plough doggedly to the end - unfortunately that was something I did with this book.

I was looking forward to reading this as it was written by an avid reader (which I would describe myself as) about her reading experiences over a year. Various of the situations she found herself in were familiar - always carrying books in handbags, just in case, as an example - but I didn't find myself attracted to the books she was reading.

The problem may have been that the author is American and the majority of the books she read were American. I have read some US authors but not many and would not describe myself as familiar with US literature.

Disappointing but I liked the format and if I find a UK equivalent, I will certainly read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Sarah Durston TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 25 Sep 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was a little worried when I was first given this book thinking that it would be a list of facts and recommendations. So I was really pleased when I found out it was more like a reading journal/ memoir, written in a really compelling and humorous way.

If you are a bit of a bookworm, you'll recognise yourself in these pages...have you ever judged someone by the book they're reading? Carried two books with you in case you ran out of reading material? or ended up staying up into the wee small hours just becasue you want to read one more chapter? If you answered 'yes' to any of those questions then this is the book for you!

It also has some great recommendations which aren't forced down your throat.

I loved this book. I just wish I wasn't still part of, what Nelson describes as, the 'Clean Plate Club'....I'd love to be able to abandon those horrible books that I'm not enjoying....maybe now I'll give it a try.

Highly recommended.
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