Let's Celebrate 'Read A New Book Month'

“There is no friend as loyal as a book.” – Ernest Hemingway

Opening a new book can mean a wealth of different things; diving into a new world with an exciting story and compelling characters to get stuck into, to expanding your knowledge in a particular area with the benefit of a specialist's expertise.

If you can think of a subject, there will be a book of some kind that exists about it, and the possibilities that that opens up to readers is endless.

Read A New Book Month is the perfect opportunity to crack open that book that you bought on a whim and set aside, that new novel that intrigued you with its premise, or even that textbook you’ve been meaning to check out to brush up on your skills.

Our human ancestors passed down knowledge and stories in one way or another through generations of the spoken word, but it was only once these ideas started to be recorded in writing that it could really be shared further and to a wider audience than just our small social circles. By writing down our thoughts, tales and experiences, and sharing them through the medium of books we can both preserve cultures and heritage while inspiring innovation at the same time. Replicating these thoughts can spread these ideas in a way that provokes thought and can shift perspectives, foster compassion and spark creativity in minds that might have otherwise stayed idle.

The History of the Written Word:

The first written word is thought to have appeared in 3400BC; the first written story being The Epic of Gilgamesh, a mythological take of the eponymous ruler of the Sumerian city-state of Uruk, who ruled between 2700-2500 BC.

Written far before the invention of paper (or even papyrus), The Epic of Gilgamesh was first recorded on clay tablets and was the precursor to many other iterations of what we would now call a ‘book’. From bark pages held together in a variety of methods, to ancient scrolls; from our more recognisable bound books to eBooks, one thing that remains clear is that books will continue to evolve to keep up with the technology and lifestyles of the times.

About Read A New Book Month:

Read A New Book Month is about encouraging all, young and old, to experience as many books as they can in a lifetime, learning new things, and opening their minds to new possibilities. Of course, you can pick up a new book at any point in the year, but sometimes we feel like we need a reason or excuse to pick up something new (in the same way that New Year’s Resolutions feel like the extra kick we need to make a change).

Ways to Celebrate Read A New Book Month:

  • Read a new book! Which, of course, should come as a surprise to no one, but if you’re feeling ambitious you could set yourself a different kind of goal; read a new book each week of the month, or try venturing out of your comfort zone and reading something new.

  • Buy or borrow books! Buying a new book can often come with that certain satisfaction of having an uncreased spine and the scent of freshly printed ink on the page, but it can certainly add up fast! Borrowing well-loved favourites from friends and family can be a great way to access different reads, and there’s always the option of heading over to a local library or second-hand bookshop where asking for a recommendation might surprise you with a new favourite!

  • Join (or start!) a book club! Starting a book with a group of people can not only be great motivation for reading regularly, but can be a fun way to make friends, exchange ideas and engage with people from a range of backgrounds to explore a variety of authors and perspectives.

  • Donate used books! Make it easier for others to access books by donating any that you have been hanging onto that are collecting dust.