Why You Should Be Reading More

April 27th, 2018

Woman readingWhat do Bill Gates, Oprah, Elon Musk, and Warren Buffet all have in common? They read. Reading can improve reading comprehension and help develop one’s empathy—but it can also help you be more successful in life.

Warren Buffet attributes his success to reading 500 plus pages of literature each day. He wasn’t reading fiction, he was reading theoretical books. But Elon Musk used to read science fiction every day when he was younger. A good mixture of fiction and nonfiction is key—you can learn practical skills from nonfiction, but reading fiction can help spark creative innovation.

Reading can help you focus. We are a society that praises multitasking, but sustained concentration on one project can be beneficial. Reading can help you learn how to tune out distractions—and in a world where the literal world can live in your phone, tuning out distractions is a necessity.

Intimidated by reading nonfiction? I’ve found that if you read fiction, it’s like a “warm up” for your brain and it makes it easier to open another book. Graphic novels are also a great “warm up” if you’ve been out of the reading game.

Are you interested in reading more? Cecil County Public Library can make it easy for you! If you have a long commute, try an audiobook—we have books on CD at each of our branches, and digital audiobooks through our apps, Libby, Hoopla, and RBdigital. If you need a suggestion on what to read next, stop in our branch and a librarian can help match you with a book! No time to stop in? Browse our website www.cecil.ebranch.info or fill out a Book Mate application and a librarian will email you 3-5 suggestions based on your interests.

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

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Transporting the Library in My Carry-On

May 14th, 2013


I’m not trying to rub it in or anything, but I just returned from a faah-bulous Hawaiian vacation. And while I fantasized about being technology-free while there, I realized that my tablet would sure come in handy for entertainment during my 12-hour (translation: forever) flight.

And handy it was. Surprisingly, my complimentary 8 peanut halves didn’t hold my attention longer than the 2.4 seconds it took to consume them, and the in-flight movie came at a rather steep price that I refused on principle. Stubborn, I know. But I learned quickly that you can take the girl out of the library, but you can’t take the library out of the girl, and my tablet connected me to everything I needed to have a pleasant travel experience. Books! Free books! At my beck and call! This concept is almost as mind-blowing as flying over an ocean whilst reading said books.

Thanks to my beloved CCPL, I had access to a great collection of digital ebooks provided by OverDrive. Browsing was a breeze. I love learning new things, so I chose to view all nonfiction titles, refining my results by availability, subject (history), and device compatibility. I “discovered” two promising titles: Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art by Laney Salisbury and The Bounty: The True Story of the Mutiny on the Bounty by Caroline Alexander. I decided that they were perfect for me – just not on my vacation. So I made use of the convenient “Wish List” feature by clicking on the little ribbon that sticks out of the book cover image.

Then I found “the one,” a book that blends cheeky humor, personal experience, and well-researched history: The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell. She makes seemingly dull history – in this case, the Puritans of New England in the 1600s – very lively. A great vacation pick.

No beach vacation is complete without a beach read, of course, so I did a search for the first Sookie Stackhouse mystery by Charlaine Harris, Dead Until Dark. It was checked out, but CCPL often purchases extra copies of popular titles for only Cecil County folks, so after placing a hold, I received it in only a day or two. Talk about great timing!

I completed my mobile library experience with a search for travel and digital photography books. Much to my delight, OverDrive has both Fodor’s and Frommer’s travel guides to Hawaii and several books on photography, including the popular “Dummies” series.  What better way to spend a flight than coming up with fun things to do, see, and photograph when you land?

The library delivered knowledge, entertainment, and instruction, all from the discomfort of my pitifully “reclined” plane seat – for free!

Have a Kindle, iPad, Nook, or other device? Want help using OverDrive, our digital eLibrary? Visit or call your local branch for friendly, helpful instruction.

And tell us, how do you take your favorite reads on vacation?

Photo credit: “Hawaii” by Ricymar Photography

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