Do you judge a book by its cover?

Is book cover really important? Kelsey Gulick thinks it is. In her post she concluded that she pays attention to the book cover and makes her choice based on that. I wrote immediately I don’t judge by the cover, but I feel I should ponder on this.

I’m often reminded of the “don’t judge a book by a cover” whenever I go to the bookstore or library. I notice covers, of course. But I think I base my choices on:

  • the title;
  • the description (it helps the book if there are *no* “recommended” opinions on the cover);
  • a fragment in a random place of the book.

Continue reading Do you judge a book by its cover?


#ReadWomen2014 – is it really a good idea?

Have you heard of #ReadWomen2014? It’s a trend at Twitter that got attention in the media, like The Guardian with it’s article Will #readwomen2014 change our sexist reading habits? .

It looks like everybody is praising this idea. But I’m not happy with this idea, I think it’s harmful. I’ll explain my opinion in this post. I’m interested in your opinion. What do you think about #ReadWomen2014?

#ReadWomen2014 and how it started

Joanna Walsh made some New Year’s card with female writers. She made them inspired by two male reviewers resolutions to read (and review) more female writers during the year. Because some organisation (VIDA) posted charts that too little books by female authors are reviewed. You can read her story at berfrois, but I think most of the news about #readwomen2014 will give you the same info.

A long post before you, but I hope it’ll offer you an interesting insight (also on the Polish situation) and will be a good source for thoughts and discussions. Between you and me, and the others.

Continue reading #ReadWomen2014 – is it really a good idea?

Theatre in Your Home – is it good or bad?

Today’s post was supposed to be about a book. A book review. But I changed my plans because I saw a strange post. A strange and surprising post. And I’m so surprised and shocked by it, that I have to write about it. About theatre. A theatre in your house.

It all started (for me) with an article in The Guardian (British portal), titled “Why digital theatre poses no threat to live performance“. Are you as confused as me when I read that? Let me explain what the story is about. I have to warn you, it’ll be long.

Continue reading Theatre in Your Home – is it good or bad?

Are trailers and ads in cinemas too long?

I was inspired to write this post by a surprising news. I’ve read that in one of Polish cinemas people that came to see a film “Walesa. Man of Hope” had to wait 45 minutes to see the film!

That’s long, isn’t it? Is it?

Continue reading to see if that’s a long time for ads in the cinemas… Or how it’s in different countries.

Continue reading Are trailers and ads in cinemas too long?

Reading without distraction – is it your thing?

Last time I wrote about Neil Gaiman’s lecture on why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming. In my post I selected some quotes which I thought were interesting or important. Neil Gaiman was always one of my favourite writers, but now even more. I wish I were there and could listen to it, actually.

I didn’t quote anything about reading without distractions, as it’s something natural for me. And it’s irritating when you’re reading something, lost in the other world, and there’s a phone ring. Don’t you know I’m reading now and you shouldn’t disturb me?! Geez.

A comment by hawkwoman wrote under the lecture published in The Guardian surprised me. The comment was a response to Gaiman’s suggestion.

In his lecture Neil Gaiman said:

We have an obligation to read aloud to our children. To read them things they enjoy. To read to them stories we are already tired of. To do the voices, to make it interesting, and not to stop reading to them just because they learn to read to themselves. Use reading-aloud time as bonding time, as time when no phones are being checked, when the distractions of the world are put aside.

As hawkwoman said:

Are you kidding, Mr. Gaiman? I know classical music students who these days express a distaste for simply listening to music, they can only stand it if it’s on YouTube and they get a visual as well.

Reading a book without noise, an IPhone next to you, and the TV on is next to impossible for most people today: they can’t bear to be alone with themselves or with silence, never mind alone with merely words or merely music. They can’t drive without talking or texting, walk without talking or texting, go to the loo without talking or texting, or buy groceries without texting or talking.

And you want people to read? Just read?

It’s not just a diminishing source of pleasure: it’s fast becoming a lost art: the ability to lose oneself in a book without any attendant distractions.

What hawkwoman wrote is really surprising for me. I mean, seriously, people can’t read books without distraction? I usually listen to music for the whole day, but sometimes (especially in the morning on a lazy day) when I just reach out for the book, while still in bed, I forget about the music or anything at all. I’m so into reading the book that probably there would have to be a fire to make me notice the world around. Or something like that.

On the other hand, when I learn (and it’s often related to rewriting my quickly written notes to a new notebook) I need to have some noise in the background like music (usually in the language I’m learning) or TV.

Do you read without distractions? Or do you need a music or TV in the background while reading a book? How do you read?Do you agree with hawkwoman? Is it impossible to read without distractions nowadays?

Share with me and other readers your thoughts on that. Just write it down in the comments.