If you’re an avid reader of nonfiction and you don’t own a copy of How to Read a Book by Mortimer J. Adler, stop reading this and go get yourself a copy. Adler’s insights into analytical reading have proven invaluable in past books I’ve read, and I find them ever more useful with each new book I begin.
Before reading How to Read a Book, I would jump right into the core material of a new book, rarely skimming through introductions and prefaces. I would blaze my way through the book and discard it when I was finished, along with the majority of what I learned as I read it. Now, however, I fucking read EVERYTHING.
For example, I just started Carl Jung’s Man and His Symbols. Had I just jumped into the first chapter, I’d have missed a very important point in how the book was written and assembled: it isn’t your typical psychology book written by a renowned member of the field. As I read through the introduction, I came to learn how this book was actually a collaborative effort spearheaded by Jung and contributed to by four of his closest associates. This sort of thing excites me as I’m all for collaboration in every sense of the term. Having read the introduction, I’m now ever more excited to dig into the book than I had been when I first purchased it.
Since having read How to Read a Book, my desire to read and learn has increased, along with my ability to do so. For my book loving friends out there, I highly recommend How to Read a Book. It has greatly enhanced my experience in reading, and I hope it does the same for you.
P.s., notice no affiliate links? That’s because I don’t advertise (in the sense that I’m getting paid to recommend shit) on my blog. My recommendations are due to my own excitement over whatever I recommend. I’m just sayin’.