The Compulsive Bookophile

It doesn’t take an anthropologist to see that there are different kinds of book readers. Some people only read when they have to (summer reading for school, etc), others read solely what is recommended to them by others. Some read books from one particular genre, others read anything they come across. Of course, since we live in an age where everything under the sun includes a “leave a reply” button (must. create. more. internet. content!), the Atlantic recently put together a post attempting to categorize these different reading types. And because book readers love discussing their book habits, enough discussion was generated to merit a second post with an addendum including more “types”.

If you want to see all of the classifications, the Atlantic article can be found here (and here is the addendum). There are 21 total, because bibliophiles take their bibliophilia seriously.

Naturally, any self-respecting book snob like myself* isn’t content with being shoehorned into just one classification. In an attempt to narrow it down as much as possible, I found myself gravitating towards two:

The Bookophile. More than reading, you just love books. Old ones, the way they smell, the crinkles and yellowing of the pages; new ones, the way they smell, too, the crispness, running your hands over a stack of them at the bookstore. You like books rescued from the street as much as signed first editions; you like drugstore paperbacks, you like hardcover new releases, you like it all. You just like books. To you, they are an object of beauty, and you would never, ever hurt them in any way.

The All-the-Timer/Compulsive/Voracious/Anything Goes Reader. Wherever you go, whatever you do, there’s a book with you. It doesn’t matter what it is, really, so long as there are pages with words on them, or an e-reader with words on it. We can’t really suggested anything here because you took it with you to the grocery store or subway or library or laundromat or coffee shop, and you’re standing in line or sitting down and reading it right now.

*I don’t actually think I’m a book snob (I don’t know if book snobs own more books about hockey than Austen novels), but I suppose if I’m taking the time to track my reading habits and write blog posts about books, I’m more snobbish than some. I’ll just call it “emotionally invested in books”, because it sounds better. Naturally, “book snob” is one of the categories in The Atlantic. I’m automatically disqualified for this title because I love paperbacks. Oh well.

Which type most describes you?


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