The Dos and Don’ts of Getting Someone to Read

The Dos and Don’ts of Getting Someone to Read

We know—you’re a bigger bookworm than Jo March, you’ve reread library books more times than Belle has, and now you want to share your favorite tattered read with your best friend or significant other. But there is a process to recommending books, especially if you want to stay friends afterward and/or not turn them off to reading forever. Follow our handy how-to guide for the perfect way to get someone you care about to read something you care about.

Do: Offer to be a reading buddy. (What do you know, we’ve got an app for that!)

Source: Tumblr/Prepare to Be Charmed

Don’t: Say, “Oh my God, you have to read this!” Slow your roll, girl. That kind of overenthusiastic pushing would never work on you, now would it? Tread carefully, or your plot will be over before it even begins.

Source: Tumblr/Mean Girl GIFs

Do: Ease friends into an exciting new genre, especially if it’s something daunting like sci-fi or literary fiction.

Source: Survivor Sucks

Do: Mention if you don’t like your pages dog-eared or the like.

Don’t: Impose a list of must-nots around the book.

Source: Rebloggy

Don’t: Pester them via text, email, and social media for their progress. Back off and let them enjoy it!

Source: We Heart It

Do: Keep track of who you lend your books to.

Don’t: Be a librarian Nazi.

Source: The Bulldog Project

Don’t: Spoil your favorite parts of the book. Because nothing kills an enjoyable read faster than, “Didn’t you just die when Ron and Hermione kissed on page 625?”

Source: Tumblr/Doctor Who

Do: Point them toward fanfiction—assuming they liked the book enough to want to explore that world more.

Source: Star City Games

Don’t: Take it personally if they don’t adore the book. We all have different tastes, and their opinion doesn’t tarnish how much you love a certain book.

Source: New Stories Old Book

Do: Be open to their recommendations. Turnabout is fair play. And who knows—you may find your new favorite book.

Source: Goodreads

Elizabeth Rowe
Elizabeth is Bookish's Senior Editor and a graduate of Columbia University's MFA program in Nonfiction Writing. She is based in San Francisco and can frequently be found at Philz with her nose in a book. Her current obsession is the My Struggle series by Karl Ove Knausgaard, and she thoroughly embarrassed herself when she met him shortly after the release of volume four (and she has the photos to prove it).


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