8 Strategies to Read More in 2022

Is “reading more” on your list of things to do this year? Finding time to read isn’t always easy – life can often get in the way, and distractions are plentiful! So how can we devote more time to books and reading in the coming year? Here are 8 strategies to try, you’ll be surprised how much reading you can get done!

OK, now that you’ve found some time to read, here are a few tips for finding what to read.

Check out the FastTrack shelf when you’re at Cheshire Library. We reserve a copy of our most popular titles for the FastTrack shelf. These copies are immune from Holds, go out for 14 days, and cannot be renewed. If there’s a hot new book that you’re dying to read (or you just want to see what the hot new books are), check out this shelf each time you come into the library. They’re designed to move fast, so check back often!

Sign up for our New Items Newsletter. Powered by Wowbrary, our weekly e-newsletter shows you everything the library has purchased for the collection (including downloadable items) each week. You can get a jump on the Holds list by requesting items as soon as we’ve ordered them.

Browse the Staff Picks display. This wall of books is located near the Checkout area, and our staff keeps it filled with their favorites. Librarian approved!

Peruse the book lists in our online catalog. You can find the latest New York Times Bestseller lists, lists of our newest items, and Staff Picks (staff-created book lists on a wide range of topics).

Grab a Book Bundle. We bundle together 3 books on a similar theme and display them on the Book Bundle shelf in our lobby. The themes change frequently, check this shelf often!

Try our MatchBook service. Our personalized reading service will help you find your next book. Just answer a few questions on our online form and we’ll provide you with a selection of fresh reads based on your interests.

There are even more ways to find a good book on our website, check out our Find a Good Book page.

Bundle Up With a Good Book

Do you like certain types of books – stories about dogs, or maybe vacations in Italy? Perhaps you like adventure stories, or space opera, or a good forensic mystery, but don’t know what to read next.  Do you like binge-reading a good series? 

Have you noticed the case of bound books in the middle of the lobby?

Take a closer look at our Book Bundles.

Book bundles are three books of a common theme bound together, so you can binge-read on a topic you enjoy. It might be outdoors, kidnappings, or WWII stories. It could be autism, award winners, westerns, Book Club Favorites, art heists, robots, or gothic horror. There’s always something new on the shelf, so check it frequently. Intrigued by a category? Check out the bundle and explore!

But not all of the titles seem interesting to me – what if I only want to check out one or two?

You can check out one or all three, whatever you’d like. Just return the unwanted ones to the desk and we’ll find them new partners. 

Don’t see anything to your liking? Prefer existentialist graphic novels? Right now you’re only reading novels that have cats in them? Trying to catch up on real-life medical stories? Let us know! We’d be happy to take requests!

There’s nothing like finding a good book, and it’s even better when you find three new favorites at once. A whole new world of reading adventures awaits!

Read-alikes of Your Favorite Books

“I just finished Margaret Atwood’s A Handmaid’s Tale, and it blew me away! What’s another book like that?”

We get questions like this every day at CPL. And while no two books are going to give you exactly the same reading experience, we know of plenty that are pretty similar to  that great book you just read.  For example, here are four titles that got a lot of Checkout time last year, and four others you might like just as much.

infographic illustrating the book selections mentioned in this article.

If you’d like to find more books to love, check out our reader’s advisory database NoveList (available on the eResources page of our website.) NoveList is the premier database of reading recommendations, available through libraries around the world, and makes it easy to match the right book with the right person.

Staff Picks are everywhere!

If there’s one thing we love, it’s recommending books. A walk through our main & lower levels will reveal a dozen or more themed book displays featured throughout, which we change and update frequently. There’s also our “Reader’s Depot” on the main level, which features the current NYT Bestsellers Lists, release dates for upcoming titles, read-alike lists, and more.

Anyone going through the Checkout area has seen our Staff Picks wall. This wall is filled in daily with books our staff members have read and enjoyed. There’s ALWAYS something good to read there!

You may not know that there is also a “Staff Picks” page in our catalog. Staff members have put together some themed book lists there for you to peruse. You can browse these Staff Picks right from home, and if you see something you like, reserve a copy online!

 

If you’re reading this blog, you already know there are a ton of reading suggestions here. Elsewhere on social media, our Tumblr is full of book lists & book news, too.  And of course, you can always come right out and ask us for reading suggestions. Or let us know about a book you enjoyed. We love getting book recommendations almost as much as giving them!

10 Books for Kids Obsessed with “Diary of a Wimpy Kid”

They’re the books that got many reluctant readers turning pages, but what to do once they’ve finished them all? It’s a question I hear often when I work in the Children’s Room. Parents want to keep the interest going, and are keen to know which other books  will appeal to their DOAWK fans.

A couple of the attractions of this series for reluctant readers is that there are pictures, which provides a text break and makes reading feel more manageable, and humor, which makes them fun rather than work. Here are 10 suggestions for books that hit those sweet spots with middle grade readers.

 

Timmy Failure series by Stephan Pastis. Meet Timmy Failure, the founder, president, and CEO of the best detective agency in town, probably the nation. And his lazy sidekick, Total, a 1,500-pound polar bear.

Alvin Ho series by Lenore Look. Frightened by everything out in the world and completely quiet at school, Asian-American second-grader Alvin Ho becomes a force to be reckoned with at home when he transforms himself into the loud, talented, and fearless Firecracker Man!

How to Train Your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell. Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III, the quiet and thoughtful son of the Chief of the Hairy Hooligans, tries to pass the important initiation test of his Viking clan by catching and training a dragon.

Origami Yoda series by Tom Angleberger. Tommy and his friends interact with a paper finger puppet of Yoda, worn by their weird classmate Dwight, to try and figure out whether or not the puppet can really predict the future.

Tom Gates series by Liz Pinchon. Irritating his teachers with his lack of focus and creative excuses, Tom Gates spends his time drawing pictures and writing down observations about everything from his grumpy sister and annoying classmate to an unsatisfying camping trip.

 

The Odd Squad series by Michael Fry. When his school counselor insists that he needs better socialization skills after being stuffed into a locker by a bully, middle-schooler Nick finds himself, along with two other misfits, joining the school’s lamest club: Safety Patrol.

Clueless McGee series by Jeff Mack. Clueless McGee is just your average fifth-grader: snarky, awkward, and a magnet for trouble. The only difference: he’s also an amateur detective. Determined to make his absent father proud, he uses the skills he’s learned playing video games to solve mysteries.

The Terrible Two books by Mac Barnett and Jory John. Disgusted when he has to move from the oceanside community where he was infamous for his tricks to a sleepy, cow-filled town that already has a notable prankster, Miles plots mischief that culminates in a daring partnership.

Dear Dumb Diary series by Jim Benton. Take a peek inside the diaries of middle schoolerJamie Kelly – she’s cool (sometimes), nice (mostly), and funny (always). She’s the nerd, the cute girl, the jealous girl, and the brainiac all wrapped up in one.

The Dork Diaries series by Rachel Renée Russell. Through journal entries, sketches, and drawings, the complicated life of eighth grader Nikki Maxwell is presented –  her relationship with her mother, secret crushes, dealings with her biggest rival at school, passion in pursuing art as a career, and overall views on the world in which she lives.