Curling Up with a Good Book

There are so many ways to get comfortable with a book and get lost in the words and stories that it contains. You can read in the car during a long journey, in between classes, at the dining table, your bed, the couch, the bath, and so on. There’s the classic physical books that can be compact and slim and easily carried in one hand, or so heavy that you can use it as a weight. E-books like Kindles or Nooks can hold hundreds upon thousands of stories in one small device, providing an endless selection in the palm of your hands. These e-book services are also available as apps, so if you already have a tablet, you can read them on there, or even on your phone.

Nowadays, many wonder if kids and adolescents even read for fun anymore, often citing social media and technology as the major factor. The question about youth reading habits is not new, however. For example, when the Harry Potter phenomenon was at its peak, many noticed that kids had an increased interest in reading, despite being more consumed with TVs at the time. Despite this, young adult novels are still being published (and often adapted into TV shows and movies).

Studies have shown that leisurely reading can have a positive effect on anxiety and stress. There are several ways that this happens; some psychologists believe that because reading is such an intensive activity that requires concentration, it can drown out distractions while also indulging you in a good story. These good stories can ease muscle tension and lower heart rates in as little as six minutes! In fact, reading can reduce stress up to 68%, having a greater effect than going for a walk or listening to music.

It’d be impossible to list the kinds of books that you can read, but there are so many genres and so many new releases that it can get pretty overwhelming to decide where to start. There’s always the New York Times bestseller list – and they even have a specific list for young adult hardcovers as well. You don’t need to stick to the most popular books though: ironically, social media websites like Goodreads and tumblr are great outlets to find books that match up with your interests. They usually have forums or blogs specifically for more diverse literature in both characters and authors too.

Do you like to read? Does your child read? How do you think teens can become more interested in reading?

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