LEISURE: REDISCOVERING THE JOY OF TEXT

MORE PEOPLE ARE READING, OR AT LEAST PRETENDING TO, AND JUST ABOUT EVERYONE SEEMS TO BE PROFITING BUT PUBLISHERS

Reading is a lot like sex. People who rarely read can feel abnormal. People who read all the time can feel abnormal. And because so much reading is done in private, behind closed doors (often bedroom doors), no one really knows what normal is. A book a day? A month? A year? Do self-help books count, or only novels? What if they're on tape?

In the absence of a Kinsey-style report on American reading habits, one can only guess what's going on in the dormitories, airport lounges and on the porch swings of the land. And yet there are signs of...

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