Keeping a Book Journal


I’ve been a reader my whole life. I remember having my nose buried in a book for much of my childhood and reading remains my retreat and my ‘me-time’ now, as a busy parent. My friends and family know I’m a bookworm, so I’m often treated to vouchers for Amazon or Waterstones or the like, or a nice pile of books for birthdays and Christmas, which brings me much joy. However, until my recent birthday, I’d never been bought one of these…

book journal

My life has been changed forever! This particular journal is from Paperchase, and there are two types of pages running through it, the majority are for book reviews,, and then there are others to keep a record of books borrowed/lent..

book journal pages

I had this for my birthday mid-June, so I’ve been keeping it ever since. I’m not too interested in the borrowed/lent section, but I am finding I enjoy the reviews. They aren’t reviews as you may read over on Goodreads or Amazon, as they’re just notes for me, so something along the lines of how much I enjoyed it, why, how it compares to other books by the same author/same genre and so on. Along with the title and author, I also note down the dates that I read it, as looking back, I’ll be able to tell how much I liked it by how quickly I read it, too.

When this journal ends, I’ll be using another, though it’ll probably be just one of my many still-blank notebooks. I can see this becoming a lifetime habit now, as there’s something almost cathartic about writing down my feelings after reading a book. I find myself finishing a book, and then pondering how I’ll sum it up, what I really thought about it. Making a few notes on it, however basic and for my eyes only, makes me actually stop and think about the book that little bit more. Some books I’ve loved, and scribbled furiously away, whilst others, I’ve had to think about and it’s only been through this process that I’ve sorted my thoughts more clearly. I read a fair bit, and often rush from book to book, so this now causes me to stop and reflect. I do appreciate the pause, and I like the idea of knowing what I’ve read, how many books I’ve read, and seeing the patterns in my reading, too, if that makes sense? If I read a book that disappoints, do I move to a complete genre change next, or attempt to erase it with another stronger candidate? Well, it’s all being recorded now for me to look back on.

I’ve often wondered how many books I’ve read, or even how many I read on average in a year, so now I’ll be able to keep a record, and then I’ll add a few thousand ore on for the other 30 odd years of life so far! Reading and books are such an important part of my life, my enjoyment, it now actually seems odd that I’ve not thought to do this before!

Do you keep a book journal? If so, what sort of things do you make a note of? Or if not, have I inspired you to do so?

You may also enjoy How Do You Read Yours?

The Reading Residence
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