Skip to main content

Books in the Time of Corona

During difficult times, a good book can distract us from the daily worries of the latest news. With travel plans changed due to the worldwide outbreak of the coronavirus, staying home for spring break instead of having fun might feel for non-readers like isolation, quarantine, or even the end of the world. Well, it isn’t!

Books We Read will help you channel some of the anxiety away from the latest news or panic on social media to library resources that can help you find a good book — to help you break out of a panic spiral, put a missed vacation trip into perspective, or just divert your attention as you immerse yourself in a story. Instead of feeling like you’re in a dystopian sci-fi novel, here are some tips to escape into reading!

Print books for the bravehearted

Use QuickSearch on the RUL home page to find a book or two. Visit any Rutgers library and pick up a print book or have it delivered to a library of your choice. Do you need ideas what to read (and borrow from RUL)? Check out this collection of Books We Read with book descriptions and links to the titles in the Rutgers catalog in various genres, such as fiction, suspense, sci-fi/fantasy, bio/memoir, classics, and short stories.

Ebooks for the tech-savvy

Use QuickSearch on the RUL home page to find an electronic book. For more guidance and tips, see this guide. You will be pleasantly surprised by the selection of titles RUL has to offer.
For more free and easy-to-access reading options, the Internet Archive has a large collection of digitized books. Did you know that, with a free account, you can actually “borrow” books from the Internet Archive rather than download them?

Audiobooks for those who like to multitask

Although RUL don’t have audiobooks, there are many free options to find and listen to a favorite book in addition to your local public library. The Internet Archive hosts millions of recordings — Harry Potter, anyone? Read by Stephen Fry (British) or Jim Dale (American)?  Many of the titles in the public domain have been recorded by volunteers from LibriVox. See more free options.

Bonus tip: Virtual Browse

Did you know that you can browse the Rutgers University Libraries collection virtually? Once you have located a book you like on the Rutgers University Libraries homepage, scroll down to find similar titles under VIRTUAL BROWSE.

screenshot of virtual browsing