By March 22, 2011

Brain books and Fun books, and how the Amazon Kindle fired up more reading

I’ve been a reading kick lately. A very good friend of mine sent me a Kindle as a “survive the new move in a hostile environment” gift at the start of 2011. The cold, motorcycle-unfriendly weather and the allure of a shiny new gizmo have helped me read a ton of books in the three months I have been in Minnesota.

I divide the books that I read into two groups: brain books and fun books.

“Brain” books are meant to educate me, or at least prompt me to think about important issues. They might be non-fiction and meant strictly to educate, like a history book. They might also be fictional yet allude to key messages or topics. At this stage in my life, I gravitate more towards “edu-tainment” style books that are partly thought provoking and partly entertaining. William Forstchen’s book One Second After is a good example.

At the other end of the spectrum are “fun” books. Fun books may reference human characteristics worthy of thought; for example, what traits do heroes or villains possess. However, they are primarily meant to be read for pleasure and entertainment. Most of the reason I read “fun” books is to keep up with the stuff Sedagive?’s older son reads. I burned through three Artemis Fowl books and started the first book of the Hunger Games trilogy and the first of the Maximum Ride series so that I knew what he was interested in, and if they had any topics we should discuss.

Back when I used to read a lot more, I used to try to alternate one “fun” book for a “brain” book. Reading a fun book was a way to reward myself after reading a brain book, which was necessary to keep my mind from going to mush after reading a fun book.

Looking back at my Kindle reading history, I have read nine fun books to one brain book. Hardly the 1:1 pairing of the old days. In my own defense, three of the fun books deal with human behavior in the face of occupation and oppression, and the author’s opinion on how some people resist while the rest hope that a grim fate passes them by.

I’d also like to think that reading what Gojira likes is somewhat educational, even if the books are for fun.

I am currently reading a primer on the Crusades, in what may be a long string of “not-fun-at-all” books regarding a conflict that some feel is almost 1400 years old and still going strong.

Look for some upcoming opinions on books, and please pardon me if they’re more fun than brain.

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1 Comment on "Brain books and Fun books, and how the Amazon Kindle fired up more reading"

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  1. BushPutin says:

    I laughed out loud when I read that one of your _fun_ books deals with, “human behavior in the face of occupation and oppression”. Awesome.

    -BushPutin

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