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What We (All) Have Been Reading

Reading rabbitAs a project and as a blog, we here at Books We Read have been very interested in what––and how––people are reading during the pandemic. Are people taking the time indoors to tackle classics that they’d always wanted to read, or falling back on the authors or genres (or even the same novels) that have offered comfort in the past? Speaking for myself, I’ve done some of both, as have many of us on the project.

That’s why some recent findings published in the New York Times grabbed our attention. Follow the link for the full writeup, but here are some interesting highlights:

  • Physical books have seen their best sales in more than a decade––print’s not (yet) dead!
  • Audiobook and ebook sales were up as well; check out our posts and pages for more on both formats and how to find them at Rutgers.
  • Befitting a presidential election year, 2020’s bestsellers were notably political: part 1 of former President Barack Obama’s autobiography A Promised Land was the most-sold print book of the year (matching his wife Michelle’s Becoming), while books about former President Donald Trump and his administration rode the bestseller list most of the year (but faded after he lost in November).

Keep reading, everyone! And speaking of the Times (which we’ve linked to often), I’ve found that good writing about books stimulates my mind about what I’ve been reading and whets my appetite for more. If you’re looking for good writing about books, then in addition to the Times you should check out outlets like Public Books (no subscription required!), the New York Review of Books, the LA Review of Books, the London Review of Books… you get the idea.

See more on how to access the New York Times and other newspapers from Rutgers Libraries.