Reading Blog


Reader Reviews You Can Trust


Today, we look back on the incredible selection of books our members have reviewed for our early-reader program, First Impressions during 2018 - 39 titles in total. Reader reviews abound on the web, but it's difficult to know which to trust, especially when there are businesses who will arrange for glowing reviews to be posted for a fee, and other reviews may be written by family and friends. BookBrowse's First Impressions program offers you a source of trustworthy reader reviews because only BookBrowse members can post reviews. Members indicate which books they're interested in but cannot prioritize, and copies are assigned by BookBrowse's algorithms. So, while it's conceivable that somebody connected to the book might be assig... [More]

The 2018 BookBrowse Award Winners


We are delighted to announce BookBrowse's 2018 Award Winners and our Top 20 Best of Year Books.

BookBrowse's Best of the Year Awards are an excellent barometer of great reading. They are particularly noteworthy for two reasons. Firstly, because voting is only open to BookBrowse subscribers - so, unlike other popular awards, there is no vote stuffing. Secondly, instead of just voting for a book (which favors the most widely read books) subscribers rate each book on the shortlist that they've read, and the winning books are the ones with the highest overall rating. Over 6,000 votes were cast for this year's awards to decide the Top 20 Best Books and the four Award Winners. [More]

A Look Back on BookBrowse's 2018 Book Club Books


There's really no better way to be sure that a book is right for your book club than being a "fly on the wall" at an actual discussion--such as for the fifteen books we discussed in BookBrowse's Book Club during 2018.

What sets our Book Club apart from other online forums is the quality of the discussion. Participants, mostly BookBrowse members, come together with the intent of sharing and learning from each other's views just as they would if they were physically in the same room.

To help you decide which books are right for you and your book club, you can read more about the books and "listen in" to the discussions from our book club discussion page. [More]

The 10 Essential Elements of a Gothic Novel


In the spirit of Halloween, we highlight the Gothic genre. Gothic literature emerged as one of the most chilling forms of Dark Romanticism in the late 1700s, and has since captivated readers with terrifying, mysterious narratives. Evident in the works of great Gothic writers such as Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker, the Bronte sisters, and many more, Gothic stories feature distinctive elements that make the genre so unique. [More]

Bibliotheraphy: Can Books Treat Mental Health Issues?


The Story of Arthur Truluv by Elizabeth Berg is by many accounts a "feel-good read" – a book that readers say makes them feel upbeat after having finished it. But that raises the question: Can a book truly influence your mood?   It turns out that scientists have long speculated that reading can, in fact, have an impact on one's mental health, and a practice called "bibliotherapy" has arisen around this belief.

READING IN SOVIET LINES by Eugene Yelchin and M.T. Anderson


Eugene Yelchin: A good third of our waking lives my family spent standing in lines. In the Soviet Union where we lived, the goods were scarce. We stood in lines for everything — food, clothing, furniture, light bulbs — you name it. Waiting took hours. Often, by switching shifts between my father and my mother, […]

Origins of The Poesy Ring by Bob Graham


As much as is possible I write my stories intuitively. I am now trusting myself to do this, and at the end of the process if more is needed I have helpful back up from my editor Lizzie and designer Deirdre at Walker Books. I don’t go looking for stories. More, I like to sit […]

Traditions by Creators IRL


In the midst of the holiday season, many of us are thinking about family, the traditions that we treasure and how they connect us to those we care about. Traditions are so universal that, even when different or unfamiliar, they can bring people together in profound ways.   In this second video for Creators IRL, […]

Zen Origin Story by Lisa Bunker


Three threads of inspiration brought Zenobia July into being—one light, one dark, and the third, celebratory. The light thread was a decades-long itch to try my hand at the Sherlock Holmes trope. I love the idea of the quirky genius detective. But, I got to thinking, what if my detective works in cyberspace? And what […]

Our Seventh Nerdversary and the 8th Annual Nerdy Book Club Award Nominations


Colby Sharp and I met in person at the 2011 National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) conference in Chicago. We had been collaborating for several months online by then. Colby participated in my annual summer #bookaday reading challenge, then joined me to co-host my monthly Twitter chat, #titletalk in the fall.   In spite […]

Books My Fifth Graders Are Reading by Colby Sharp


I cannot believe we have already been in school for more than three months. It has been so much fun watching my students find new authors to love, series to devour, and genres to explore. I thought making a video sharing the books we are reading would be a fun way to share what we’re […]

The Last of the CODYs by Tricia Springstubb


In this life, many things are bittersweet: –the last day of school –growing out of your favorite PJs, so you get a fuzzy new pair, but you feel bad for your old favorites –publishing the final book in a series you’ve loved writing On a recent school visit, a student asked me why I began […]

Refugee by Alan Gratz – Review by Rebecca Karli


Why I picked it:   Refugee first came on my radar this summer through the Global Read Aloud Program (go to the end of this post to read more about this initiative and how to participate). As an ESL teacher, I have taught many refugee students, so I’m always looking for books about and for them. […]

The Write Stuff: How to Turn Kids Who Aren’t Readers Into Writers by Katherine Marsh


It was a rainy September morning when I arrived at the small K-12 public school in rural Michigan. This visit was the culmination of a week-long author tour for my latest middle grade novel, Nowhere Boy, which had taken me to ten schools in three states. To say I was exhausted was an understatement; I […]

ANY SECOND: Anxiety, Isolation, and Empathy by Kevin Emerson


One time, during high school biology class, I peeled all the skin off the top third of my index finger. I know, gross, right? It was a symptom of anxiety, though I didn’t know it at the time. These days, my fingers look okay, but it’s not uncommon to see me sporting a Star Wars […]


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