Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Bookmarks Magazine

All the literary stars must be aligned this week. Not only is it the Read-a-thon weekend, but last night my husband walked in from the mailbox with my most recent edition of Bookmarks Magazine! I immediately dropped what I was doing (and for the life of me I do not remember what that was) and began reading this favorite periodical from cover to cover.

If you are unfamiliar with this terrific gem - please visit their website. There are back issues to peruse and an opportunity to sign up for an annual subscription. I first picked up a copy of Bookmarks at my local bookstore last fall (Barnes and Noble and Borders both carry it) - about a month before I discovered the book review blogosphere. The professional quality of the pages, the neat, concise layout, the summary reviews for each book (and I find that they pull a broad range of reviews so that I can ascertain a fairly objective opinion of the book), and the breadth of books chosen for review (not only the best sellers in each of the major genres, but also lesser reviewed books that are worthy of distinction) are just some of the reasons why I love this magazine.

Here are just a few of books that I have added to my TBR list as a result of last night's read:
  • The Magician's Book by Laura Miller
  • The Magicians by Lev Grossman
  • Deaf Sentence by David Lodge
  • Songs for the Missing by Stewart O'Nan
  • The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa
  • Sag Harbor by Colson Whitehead
  • Possession by AS Byatt
  • The Anthologist by Nicholson Baker
  • Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy
  • Bad Things Happen by Harry Dolan
  • Get Real by Donald Westlake
  • An Expensive Education by Nick McDonnell
  • Blame by Michelle Huneven
  • A Gate at the Stairs by Lorrie Moore
  • Nocturnes by Kazuo Ishiguro
While most of the books are new releases, many of them have been around for while, but they are new to me (Prince of Tides in particular). I like that the magazine introduces me to all types of literature from all different time periods!

The magazine always spotlights an author (the most recent edition features Margaret Atwood, but many times they feature a classic author such as Charles Dickens or Louisa May Alcott). They also devote one page to a book club - which I always enjoy since I am not a part of one (yet!). The Nov/Dec edition also focuses on books about Inventors (and several are mentioned - both adult and young adult), as well as books that we bibliophiles would consider "Guilty Pleasures" -- you know, those books that we are embarrassed to admit that we enjoy as much as the literary classics.

All in all this magazine feeds my book acquisition addiction -- which I have decided is a good thing. I am starting to request more books from my local library (I think I have about 15 on reserve at the moment) and then decide if I would like to add them to my personal collection. This way I feel that I can have my cake and eat it too: instant gratification to read what I want to read when I want to read it without the guilt of having to serve PB&J sandwiches (again!) for dinner.

I am curious of any of you use other media to foster your reading habits? Are there other magazines, periodicals, or websites that I should investigate?


  1. What's wrong with PB&J for dinner regularly? You can always switch it up with Mac & Cheese. :-) I love Booksmarks, too!


  2. Gosh, I've never heard of Bookmarks! Going to their website now!

    I can't live without Book Page -- a monthly circular that I pick up at my local library. http://www.bookpage.com/

    They also have a great blog, http://bookpage.wordpress.com/

    My Sunday afternoons are consumed with The NYTimes book review. Couldn't function without it.

  3. I don't read Bookmarks regularly, just when my mom sends along her old ones.

    I didn't know until my last issue that Good Reads and Bookmarks are connected.

  4. I had a subscription to Bookmarks on my wish list last Christmas. It might be a good thing that I didn't get it. I'll have to pick up a copy the next time I'm in the bookstore.

  5. I receive EW each week, and that usually has only a half dozen reviews. And that is already a bad influence! I can't imagine a whole magazine of bad influence. I actually HAVE heard of this mag, can't remember where (Iliana? Carrie? Beth?). I may need to add this to my Xmas list.

    I LOVE LOVE LOVED Prince of Tides, and even more so I loved Beach Music (on my top 10 books ever). You feel you can close your eyes and go to the Outer Banks. Beautiful writing, damaged people, his books are like poems.

  6. Bookmarks sounds as if it would be very, very dangerous to my already gargantuan TBR mountains!

    Molly and readers, I have a new book giveaway on my blog, so stop by! :)

  7. LOL, Molly - great minds think alike...I just started working on a post this morning about exactly this!!! I was thrilled to get Bookmarks this month, and it is a terrific issue!!! Stay tuned for my post in the next 24 hours *laughing* I'll be sure to link to yours as well!

  8. I used to get Bookmarks magazine but it felt like one giant advertisement. I didn't find much content other than short summaries of the books.

    However, I do enjoy BookPage which is a free publication you can get at the library. You can also subscribe to a more fleshed out version and of course their website is great ( their blog too).

  9. My bookmarks magazine came yesterday, too. We added many of the same books to our lists...but you beat me to the post ;-)

    I also love Book Page, which I pick up monthly at my library.

  10. Bookmarks sounds delectable--and dangerous! Will visit their website ASAP. Thanks for the tip, and enjoy your reading!

  11. Hey Molly! Hope all is going well. Just wanted to let you know we announced this months book for The Good Books Club, I know you had said you hoped to participate in the future! Just wanted to keep you updated. Hope your week is going well!


  12. I love Bookmarks too! I would also suggest bookreporter.com. I love it! You should suscribe to the newsletter as well. I love reading Carol Fitzgerald's blog and comments in the newsletter. Once you are there you can read about the other websites they have as well. I was wondering, are you doing the 24 Hour Reading Marathon? Also, I wanted to let you know that I enjoy your blog!

  13. I LOVE Bookreporter.com Newsletter. It comes to my email box every Friday afternoon and I truly enjoy reading through it, the blog, Word of Mouth, and the Reading Guides each weekend~ They keep me up to date on Book Festivals, great reviews and recommendations as well as a link to teen books. The best part...it's free~!

  14. I never heard of this BUT darn it ... I want it. I sense a subscription in my future!

  15. I love Bookmarks--but have already received that particular copy--in September. Are you a new subscriber? I am not expecting my new issue until the middle of November---
    I love that it doesn't just focus on brand new books--

  16. I'm a Bookmarks fan too. Since we travel so much I don't subscribe. Every other month it's like a scavenger hunt looking for a bookstore that has a copy. I also love Book Page but use their website for the same reason. All of these are dangerous.

  17. Wow! I've never heard of this one, but I'll have to check it out. Sadly I don't do well with magazines. I subscribe to Real Simple and then never find the time to sit down and read it.

    When I was in college I read different journal publications but since then have stopped--now it's all about the blogs. Too bad in a way to be so limited, but you guys have given me great suggestions.


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