Monday, January 12, 2009

More Americans reading fiction than at any time since 1982

Could it be that reality is so bad these days, readers are fleeing to the realm of fiction for relief of depression and anxiety? Seems reasonable. Or could it be that movie tickets are too expensive?

Whatever the reason, more reading is a good thing. You can experience other lives, other times in history, other countries, even other solar systems, from the comfort of your easy chair. So turn off the news and settle in with a good book. If you don't have one in mind, go here to find the NY Times list of fiction and nonfiction best-sellers.

The Daily Beast - January 12, 2009

Amidst book publishers’ struggles, the National Endowment for the Arts has a surprise finding: Fiction reading is on the rise. For the first time since 1982, when the NEA began collecting such data, the percentage of adults who have read at least one novel, short story, play, or poem in the past year has risen to 50.2 percent from 46.7 percent in 2002. The increase was most dramatic among 18 to 24 year old, among whom the decline was previously most pronounced. The exact reasons for the rise are unknown, but Dana Gioia, the chairman of the NEA, speculates that community-based book clubs, Oprah Winfrey, and series like Twilight and Harry Potter all played a role.

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