Can you read too much?

It’s not hard to guess my answer: impossible!. But evidently some don’t agree — including a librarian.

Circulating heavily in the blogosphere is the story of a library director who told a nine-year-old boy that he “hogs” the library’s annual summer reading event. He’s read 373 books over the last five contests.

In this age of electronic consumption and dependency, why would anyone, particularly a librarian, discourage a child from reading a book? I read tons of books during the summer reading contests when I was young. I don’t remember if I won any prizes but that’s because prizes weren’t the point. The reading was the reward. I loved that summer not only created more time to read but that you could read whatever you wanted

I taught my kids that reading was the most important skill you can acquire. With it, you can learn damn near anything else. The only way there can be too much reading is if you believe knowledge, stimulation and joy are irrelevant to the human condition.


Reading is a means of thinking with another person’s mind; it forces you to stretch your own.

Charles Scribner, In the Web of Ideas

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