I’ve been indulging in some House of Cards on Netflix.
Nothing too extreme, like one episode a night.
But in all the talk about binge-watching, does anyone binge read anymore?
Like knock out a book in a day. A few hours.
Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I’ve done that. My wife’s done it a few times and I’ve done it over a couple of days, but to read a book in one sitting? Really rare.
I remember reading Freedom by Jonathan Franzen very quickly. The Art of Fielding was another. Those were books I didn’t want to like, but then was sucked in. Crapalachia by Scott McClanahan and Selected Blog Posts from A Mexican Panda Express Employee by Megan Boyle. Eat When You Feel Sad by Zachary German is the rare book I’ve read twice, both times in weird road trip settings that afforded a long read. I also binge-listened to Lunar Park by Bret Easton Ellis via an audiobook when I drove 12 hours to Florida.
I enjoyed those experiences, but I think I remember them because I don’t do it too often. It takes a good author (not necessarily a good book) to get there. But if an author employs cliff-hanger tricks, I start getting mad. I can see right through it and I stop.
Most of the time, I’m in the middle of three or four books and bounce in between often forgetting where I am. This is inefficient, but it’s hard to sustain my interest over the long haul. In fact, maybe it’s more like taking in a TV show–the old-fashioned way. I read a chapter or two at a time, take a break and then return, just like how a favorite TV show (usually) premieres one ep at a time.
Maybe House of Cards is setting the bar too high.