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The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction

The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction - Alan Jacobs A book about the pleasures of reading ought to be a pleasure to read. I did not find this book to be a pleasure to read. It wasn’t a waste of time. I took notes. “Read at whim!” the author, Alan Jacobs, reminds us, quoting poet Randall Jarrell. Worthy advice. Jacobs also warns us not to multitask, to read deeply, and to treat the text “like a guest in your home.” All lovely thoughts. Jacobs irritated me when he berated those who read to cross items off an ultimate reading list. Is that a bad thing? He doesn’t pick on readers of romance novels with the same vim. Unfair, I think.And do we really need an entire book about the urgency of the need for reading in our time? Jacobs is a professor of English at Wheaton College, and so I dare to say to him, Shame on you, Professor Jacobs, for not following the counsel of thousands of English teachers, for overwriting a book out of material sufficient for a good essay.