When most of the nation went into lock-down late in March, people explored all sorts of pursuits they had neither the time nor the inclination for until then. That all seems like a dream now, but last week I noted an article on pandemic reading. What makes good reading during 2020–the year that has been a time warp? The clock is moving so fast, and yet it seems not to move at all.
Pandemic Reading Together
Several online book clubs were formed and some continue today. #TolstoyTogether was one such club that set out to read War and Peace. While the club completed its task, you still can read the observations of the club leader, Yiyun Lee, by clicking on the link above. He even takes photos of his margin notes and underlinings.
There’s The Quarantine Book Club with an apropos logo.
Weekly discussions with authors continue.
A Translated Fiction Book Club also was founded, but it seems to be defunct.
By searching for “pandemic book clubs” you’ll find other offerings.
Pandemic Reading Alone
Writer Talia Lavin started a podcast in January that was a virtual book club formed to read Moby Dick, considered the best American novel ever written. You can listen to the podcast should you accept the challenge to read it alone.
And, finally, the article that started my pandemic reading thoughts explored why reading Proust now makes so much sense. The article’s author explains: “Proust’s work has many qualities that might recommend it for pandemic reading: the author’s concern with the protean nature of time, the transportive exploration of memory and the past, or simply the pleasure of immersing oneself in the richly detailed life of another.” But apparently the writer found Proust a much richer read than he had anticipated. Click on the link above to read the article.
What sort of reading habits have you adopted during our other-worldly 2020? Any particular title that you’d recommend to others?
What books make for perfect pandemic reading? Click to tweet.
Join the conversation: What books have you read during the pandemic? Click to tweet.