The Common Good
12 hours ago
The web log of a reference librarian
Once a week, members of a Wellington, New Zealand, book club arrive at a cafe, grab a drink and shut off their cellphones. Then they sink into cozy chairs and read in silence for an hour.
The point of the club isn't to talk about literature, but to get away from pinging electronic devices and read, uninterrupted. The group calls itself the Slow Reading Club, and it is at the forefront of a movement populated by frazzled book lovers who miss old-school reading.
Slow reading advocates seek a return to the focused reading habits of years gone by, before Google, smartphones and social media started fracturing our time and attention spans. Many of its advocates say they embraced the concept after realizing they couldn't make it through a book anymore.
"He is the stuff of legend. His voice can calm wild horses and his touch heal broken spirits. For secrets uttered softly into pricked and troubled ears, such men were once called Whisperers. Now Tom Booker, the inheritor of this ancient gift, is to meet his greatest challenge." - publisher's descriptionThe Horse Whisperer sounds like a shaman or a wizard. Some reviewers characterized Evans's novel as "new age". He talks to the animals, like Doctor Doolittle or Saint Francis. He has a higher awareness and sensitivity, a capacity for deep intimacy and understanding.