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  1. #1
    kfrost06's Avatar
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    One in four read no books last year

    WASHINGTON - There it sits on your night stand, that book you've meant to read for who knows how long but haven't yet cracked open. Tonight, as you feel its stare from beneath that teetering pile of magazines, know one thing — you are not alone.

    One in four adults say they read no books at all in the past year, according to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll released Tuesday. Of those who did read, women and seniors were most avid, and religious works and popular fiction were the top choices.

    The survey reveals a nation whose book readers, on the whole, can hardly be called ravenous. The typical person claimed to have read four books in the last year — half read more and half read fewer. Excluding those who hadn't read any, the usual number read was seven.

    "I just get sleepy when I read," said Richard Bustos of Dallas, a habit with which millions of Americans can doubtless identify. Bustos, a 34-year-old project manager for a telecommunications company, said he had not read any books in the last year and would rather spend time in his backyard pool.

    That choice by Bustos and others is reflected in book sales, which have been flat in recent years and are expected to stay that way indefinitely. Analysts attribute the listlessness to competition from the Internet and other media, the unsteady economy and a well-established industry with limited opportunities for expansion.

    When the Gallup poll asked in 2005 how many books people had at least started — a similar but not directly comparable question — the typical answer was five. That was down from 10 in 1999, but close to the 1990 response of six.

    In 2004, a National Endowment for the Arts report titled "Reading at Risk" found only 57 percent of American adults had read a book in 2002, a four percentage point drop in a decade. The study faulted television, movies and the Internet.

    Who are the 27 percent of people the AP-Ipsos poll found hadn't read a single book this year? Nearly a third of men and a quarter of women fit that category. They tend to be older, less educated, lower income, minorities, from rural areas and less religious.

    At the same time, book enthusiasts abound. Many in the survey reported reading dozens of books and said they couldn't do without them.

    "I go into another world when I read," said Charlotte Fuller, 64, a retired nurse from Seminole, Fla., who said she read 70 books in the last year. "I read so many sometimes I get the stories mixed up."

    Among those who said they had read books, the median figure — with half reading more, half fewer — was nine books for women and five for men. The figures also indicated that those with college degrees read the most, and people aged 50 and up read more than those who are younger.

    Pollyann Baird, 84, a retired school librarian in Loveland, Colo., says J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter fantasy series is her favorite. But she has forced herself to not read the latest and final installment, "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," because she has yet to file her income taxes this year due to an illness and worries that once she started the book, "I know I'd have to finish it."

    People from the South read a bit more than those from other regions, mostly religious books and romance novels. Whites read more than blacks and Hispanics, and those who said they never attend religious services read nearly twice as many as those who attend frequently.

    There was even some political variety evident, with Democrats and liberals typically reading slightly more books than Republicans and conservatives.

    The Bible and religious works were read by two-thirds in the survey, more than all other categories. Popular fiction, histories, biographies and mysteries were all cited by about half, while one in five read romance novels. Every other genre — including politics, poetry and classical literature — were named by fewer than five percent of readers.

    More women than men read every major category of books except for history and biography. Industry experts said that confirms their observation that men tend to prefer nonfiction.

    "Fiction just doesn't interest me," said Bob Ryan, 41, who works for a construction company in Guntersville, Ala. "If I'm going to get a story, I'll get a movie."

    Those likeliest to read religious books included older and married women, lower earners, minorities, lesser educated people, Southerners, rural residents, Republicans and conservatives.

    The publishing business totaled $35.7 billion in global sales last year, 3 percent more than the previous year, according to the Book Industry Study Group, a trade association. About 3.1 billion books were sold, an increase of less than 1 percent.

    The AP-Ipsos poll was conducted from August 6 to 8 and involved telephone interviews with 1,003 adults. It had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

  2. #2
    kfrost06's Avatar
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    Are you 1 in 4? Did you read a book last year? What? I love to read, the last book I read was Agatha Christie's Funerals are Fatal but lately all I read are internet post!

  3. #3
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    ottomaddox is offline "Better Safe Than Sorry"
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    The last book I read for fun was Catcher in the rye. I read plenty of magazines and work related manuals. Oh boy! It's definitely something I say I am going to do more in the future..............
    Peace,
    CR

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    1 in 4 don't read books... it sure explains a LOT!

    Did I read a book last year? The question should be "what book did I read last week..."

    Red

  5. #5
    Flagg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Ketchup
    1 in 4 don't read books... it sure explains a LOT!

    Did I read a book last year? The question should be "what book did I read last week..."

    Red
    Same. I'll read anything from Thomas Harris to JK Rowling. I love books.

  6. #6
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    taiboxa is offline "Vanity Redefined" ~VET~
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    i read veritas it was gold

  7. #7
    Prada's Avatar
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    Quite sad, I would have thought it to be higher actually.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prada
    Quite sad, I would have thought it to be higher actually.
    I would too. I would have guessed at least half, probably more don't read.

  9. #9
    kfrost06's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coop77
    I would too. I would have guessed at least half, probably more don't read.
    I agree, I bet a lot of people lied because they were ashamed.

  10. #10
    kfrost06's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Ketchup
    1 in 4 don't read books... it sure explains a LOT!

    Did I read a book last year? The question should be "what book did I read last week..."

    Red
    Well, what book did you read last week? I could use some ideas for a good book. I used to read about a book a week but I go through phases, I'll always have a book going but then sometimes I take a break or a read a bad one and burn out, go a couple weeks w/o reading any then start up again.

  11. #11
    Kärnfysikern's Avatar
    Kärnfysikern is offline Retired: AR-Hall of Famer
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    I read three books just on the beach during my one week vaccation. I love reading but I dont have the time to read as much as I want.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kärnfysikern
    I read three books just on the beach during my one week vaccation. I love reading but I dont have the time to read as much as I want.
    dito. I try to catch up in the holidays, cause most nights I m just too tired after work and workout to read a book...

  13. #13
    CheddaNips is offline Senior Member
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    i got the audio casettes

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kärnfysikern
    I read three books just on the beach during my one week vaccation. I love reading but I dont have the time to read as much as I want.
    Johan, though I still read a LOT, I have also started to download Audiobooks on my Ipod!

    They are great while on a long drive, or when doing cardio at the gym (reading is hard on the threadmil!)


    Quote Originally Posted by Kfrost06
    Well, what book did you read last week?
    Well, I'm mostly into sci-fi. I'm currently reading the last Harry Potter, last week I was reading "Voyager 2" by Ben Bova, the week before it was "Voyager" by the same author, before that was "Empire" by Orson Scott Card.

    Red

  15. #15
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    Kärnfysikern is offline Retired: AR-Hall of Famer
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    Red I have been looking into audiobooks. But its hard to find any good ones. I havent found any sci fi except Asimov and Clarks classics Do you download from a torrent site? Know any good one? If you know where I can download some of Orson Scott Cards books Il love you I havent gotten around to read anything by him except enders game and speaker for the dead.

    Last three books I read is
    Dean R Koontz "The taking"
    Stephen King "Cell"
    Lord of the rings, fellowship.

    Hopefully next week Il have time to finish the lord of the rings triology
    I also have Richard Rhodes "Dark sun" waiting for me. It describes the race to build the h-bomb during the cold war. His other book, "The making of the atomic bomb" is absolutely amazing. One of the best books I have ever read.

    BTW red check out Alastair Reynolds if you havent already. Revelation space is top notch and Chasm city is easily in my top 5 all categories.

  16. #16
    Kärnfysikern's Avatar
    Kärnfysikern is offline Retired: AR-Hall of Famer
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    Quote Originally Posted by kfrost06
    Well, what book did you read last week? I could use some ideas for a good book. I used to read about a book a week but I go through phases, I'll always have a book going but then sometimes I take a break or a read a bad one and burn out, go a couple weeks w/o reading any then start up again.
    If you like science and recent history you HAVE TO read The making of the atomic bomb by Rhodes. I can not begin to tell you how damn good this book is. It realy tells the story of all the great people involved not only in the manhattan project but also everything that went on before. All those that lay the foundation to modern science.

  17. #17
    Hoggage_54's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kärnfysikern
    Red I have been looking into audiobooks. But its hard to find any good ones. I havent found any sci fi except Asimov and Clarks classics Do you download from a torrent site? Know any good one? If you know where I can download some of Orson Scott Cards books Il love you I havent gotten around to read anything by him except enders game and speaker for the dead.

    Last three books I read is
    Dean R Koontz "The taking"
    Stephen King "Cell"
    Lord of the rings, fellowship.

    Hopefully next week Il have time to finish the lord of the rings triology
    I also have Richard Rhodes "Dark sun" waiting for me. It describes the race to build the h-bomb during the cold war. His other book, "The making of the atomic bomb" is absolutely amazing. One of the best books I have ever read.

    BTW red check out Alastair Reynolds if you havent already. Revelation space is top notch and Chasm city is easily in my top 5 all categories.

    If you are interested in science-fiction, check out some of Robert J. Sawyer's books. He's won a ton of sci-fi awards in recent years. Try reading Hominids and see if you like it, it's a trilogy of books. When I first started reading Hominids, I was hooked and I read the whole series afterwards.

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    Hoggage_54's Avatar
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    Here's his website: http://www.sfwriter.com/

  19. #19
    BigLittleTim is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by ottomaddox
    The last book I read for fun was Catcher in the rye. I read plenty of magazines and work related manuals. Oh boy! It's definitely something I say I am going to do more in the future..............
    Peace,
    CR
    Good book... but was it on high-school reading list?

    "Catcher in the Rye" is one of the essential books everyone should read, but it seldom gets read by anyone this side of high-school graduation. Glad someone is still into the modern american canon.

    -BigLittleTim
    Last edited by BigLittleTim; 08-25-2007 at 10:13 AM.

  20. #20
    BigLittleTim is offline Senior Member
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    "Half of the American people have never read a newspaper. Half never voted for President. One hopes it is the same half."

    -Gore Vidal

  21. #21
    Kärnfysikern's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoggage_54
    If you are interested in science-fiction, check out some of Robert J. Sawyer's books. He's won a ton of sci-fi awards in recent years. Try reading Hominids and see if you like it, it's a trilogy of books. When I first started reading Hominids, I was hooked and I read the whole series afterwards.
    Il check it out

  22. #22
    Flagg's Avatar
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    Just started Goblet of Fire, a Harry Potter story. It's true what people say, those books get better and better and darker and darker.

    For those of you that like Fantasy Epics, check out Stephen Kings DARK TOWER series, the greatest story in my opinion ever told.

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