Reading as a Collective Experience

For the past two years, Everett Public Library has partnered with Sno-Isle Libraries to bring The Big Read to all of Snohomish and Island counties. The Big Read is an example of an extremely far-reaching program designed to bring the book back into the cultural center of American life.

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This month, I had the privilege of reading Gary Mack’s Mind Gym with my roller derby team. My team is ranked 7th in the West and will be competing at the upcoming regional tournament for an even higher ranking. So in addition to physical training, we have also chosen to prepare our minds to be competitive at a higher level.

Mind Gym isn’t a book that has broad appeal, but it’s a book that is bringing my team and coaches together in ways that simply training for a sport wouldn’t. We discuss the things in the book that inspire each of us and make suggestions from the book to others. This dialogue, in turn, informs the way we play.

Everett Public Library has books like this available in sets for you to use, too. We continuously nurture our Book Group Set collection so that it stays fresh. You can choose from over 60 titles, with about equal selection of fiction and non-fiction. Even if you don’t belong to a formal book group, you may have a circle of friends that would enjoy reading one of these titles together. Reading is immensely enjoyable as an individual experience, but it can also be an experience that you share with your communities, large and small.

In 2011, the library would like to bring a more personalized, local community reading experience to Everett. What would you like to read? What would you like to read with your friends, neighbors, colleagues, and family? Please take a minute to fill out our poll and let us know.

Kate

e-Reading in Everett

I have been wanting an e-reader ever since the debut of the Kindle in November 2007. After watching prices drop and much back and forth, I broke down and bought a Nook a few weeks ago, even though the prognosticators have sounded the death knell of the standalone e-reader with the rise of the iPad and its knockoffs. Why did I do this? Perhaps I was wooed by the e-Ink technology (no direct light shining in your eyes from the screen). I’ve read reports that it potentially disrupts sleep patterns to read from a lit screen prior to bed. Maybe e-readers using e-Ink will evolve into a low-tech Luddite response to the iPad? Who knows, but so far I love my e-reader.

Another reason that I bought a Nook instead of a Kindle is that it is compatible with the EPUB file format (the Sony Reader is compatible, too). eBooks are available through OverDrive, a global digital distributor that the Everett Public Library currently uses to deliver downloadable audiobook content.

If you’re thinking about getting an e-reader or just wondering how they compare, check out the Consumer Reports e-book reader ratings through the library’s E-Sources. (You’ll be prompted to log on with your library card and PIN.)

So, I’m wondering, dear readers of our blog, do you have an e-reader device? Would you check out eBooks from the library if we carried them? We’d love to know what e-reader you use if you have one. Please vote in our poll–even if you don’t own one (there’s a box for that, too)!

Brad