Thursday, June 28, 2007

Book Burning, Bloodletting...

It's a long train, but it's worth the crash. From Jenkins Group, Inc., via Robyn Jackson, via New Pairodimes:
  • 1/3 of high school graduates never read another book for the rest of their lives.
  • 42 percent of college graduates never read another book after college.
  • 80 percent of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year.
  • 70 percent of U.S. adults have not been in a bookstore in the last five years.
  • 57 percent of new books are not read to completion.
  • 70 percent of books published do not earn back their advance.
  • 70 percent of the books published do not make a profit.
My initial reaction is sadness for the imaginations never ignited and worlds never explored through books.

This is immediately followed by a quick spout of stomach acid hosing the back of my throat and sadness for our country; these people vote.

And then inevitable, intellectual superiority.

I want to help motivate people to register and then vote. But what good is it if this many people have no understanding of the importance of books, in entertainment and history and science and literature, people who have never experienced the joy of losing four hours entangled in the language, the story, who have never felt the quiet dance of the author's words and the reader's imagination?

I feel a need to console words and receive consolation from them. Go hug a book. Then hug somebody you love. Then read them a book, or read with them.

No comments: