Revisit Reading Journals

Dear Fellow Journalers,

I thought I’d revisit some old journals that we have talked about in the past. One of the most read series of posts has been the Reading Journal.While much can be said the idea of a Reading Challenge caught my eye. Our local library sponsored a Summer Reading Challenge for adults and children this year and I thought I would share some of the book themes they suggested. This challenge is not so much as how many books you read ( Good Reads) but in what types.

  • Read a book with more than 500 pages.
  • Read a genre you don’t usually read.
  • Read a book published from a decade before you were born.
  • Read a non-fiction book about science.
  • ‘re-read a book you read in high school.
  • Read a travel book.
  • Read a book with a type of food in its title.
  • Read a book with a decorative cover.
  • Read a poetry book
  • Listen to audio book.



Reading Journal

Dear Fellow Journaler,

     Can reading a book change your life?

     We, who love to read, write about our favorites, share our books at book clubs and with friends, and who have stacks of UN-read books agree wholeheartedly. That’s where the idea of a Reading Journal came from, at least for me. I met a lady at a book club who told me that after reading a book she would rate it and write a review. In a way, this exercise became her journal.

For the past couple of years I’ve been writing about this type of journal and I have to admit that of all the journals I’ve written this is one of my favorites. Because “my nose is always in a book” I write in it constantly.Every year I participate in the Good Read Reading Challenge. Even though I set my own goals (25-50) and my own genre I always find it interesting at the end of the year to review which books I really liked. This year I read books written by favorite authors and serials by I also read some that I discovered on Book TV. Among those were a couple of political ones and some interesting biographies.

When you’re hunting for the next big read in your life where do you go? When faced with this dilemma I sometimes remember a tv show called The Twilight Zone. One episode stands out of a timid bank clerk who loved to read so much that he almost lost his job and his marriage. He used to take his books to the bank vault to read during his lunch break. You will have to look the episode up on u-tube – it’s called “Time Enough At Last”. My sources are: Bargain Booksey, Over Drive, Book Bub, Book TV, Free Kindle Books, NoveList, Hoopla, Libby, digital, and my local library’s blog.

Where will your next reading adventure take you?



Summer Bucket List and Reading List

Dear Fellow Journalers,

It’s May in New England! Finally “Mother Nature” has un-clenched her tight rein on winter weather and released warmer temperatures, beautiful flowers and longer hours of Sun. In my “neck of the woods” our furnace was still on a few days ago.

With all this talk of warmer days, I started thinking about a Summer Bucket List.  What did I want to do? Did I want to travel ? So, I dug out my Bucket List Journal and decided to add some things to do in the coming summer months. I’ll be sharing some of these with you over the coming months and of course, if YOU want to add some of your own ideas please let me know.

One thing I intend to do also is to read more books. I found a fan fiction site a few weeks ago ( something I never knew existed) and have become addicted. I really need to get back to my favorite  novels. My picks for summer reading will be included in future posts. So, sit back, grab a cold beverage and dream!




Dear Fellow Journalers,

Here are a few Reading Journal covers that I have come across.

Why I joined a book club

Dear Fellow Journalers,

I fell in love with books at an early age. I liked the feel of them in my hands and the words I heard when my Mother read to me. For all of my life until my late twenties, my Grandmother gave me books for my birthday and Christmas. I have told you in the past of my favorite reading places when I was young. In my Grandmother’s memory, I am carrying on the tradition of gifting a book to our Granddaughter.

I started a reading/quote journal when I was in high school. At the time, I copied phrases that inspired, instructed and stimulated me. Thank goodness I also referenced the title of the book and its author. I found the journal not long ago in a dusty box and decided to re-read some of those books.  I reasoned that they would be good for our Book Chat.

My sophomore English teacher, an older nun (yes, I survived Catholic Grammar, High School and College!) formed a book club as one of our after-school programs. We all had to read the same book and report on it. I remember thinking at the time, that we all seemed to take away the same feelings about the characters and the themes. I found myself wanting to read more genres. Strangely, I did not join another book club until this year.

Our Book Chat club is sponsored by our library. We meet once a week and refreshments are served. Unlike the traditional book club, we read by theme. Each January we pick the themes we want to explore and then read a book in our genre of choice that reflects that theme.  So far the themes have been: mental health, travel, cooking, banned books, motivation, black authors, women authors and historical fiction. We discuss our books (either hard-cover, e-reader, or audio) and then are free to recommend any that we have read.  I started just jotting the theme in a pocket-sized calendar and using scrap paper but soon found this method unacceptable. So I started a Reading Journal based in part on the journal of a fellow member of the club.  I bought a small journal at Barnes and Noble and intend to create a cover this year.  Here is a sample of one of my pages:

The Bridge

The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury

Rating: XXXXXXXXXX+++++ (obviously I liked it!)

A book about books and the effect they have on those who love them.

Emotions: varied from chapter to chapter. I was sad, over-joyed, anxious, happy, sometimes all at the same time!

Favorite lines:  page 34: ” People sometimes need a place like this to bridge yesterday and tomorrow.” and from Molly’s narrative: page 53:

“The Bridge connected the past and the present, the present and the future. Books brought people together and gave them a path to worlds they wouldn’t otherwise experience…”

Favorite character: Molly. She was a strong young woman who knew what she wanted. Very believable.

Recommend??  OH YES!

If you get a chance, join a book club and keep a Reading Journal. You will thank yourself later.

‘Til next time,





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