What kind of book person are you?

To kick off this week, and to buy me some time to catch up on my book reviews, let me share with you some questions that have been bouncing around in my head for a while. They center on what type of book person you are. I am assuming that since you are reading this humble blog that you have an interest in books. The question is how that interest plays itself out. The questions below point to some differences in how people relate to books or how they enjoy their particular book obsession. So share your answers in the comments or, if you have a blog of your own, post them and link back here.


1) What is your favorite type of bookstore?
A. A large chain that is well lit, stuffed full of books, and has a café.
B. A dark, rather dusty, used bookstore full of mysterious and vaguely organized books.
C. A local independent bookstore that has books by local authors and coffee.

2) What would excite you more?
A. A brand new book by your favorite author.
B. Finding a classic you’ve been wanting to read.
C. Receiving a free book from a friend in the mail.

3) What’s your favorite format?
A. Novel
B. Short story
C. Poetry

4) Favorite format, part II.
A. Contemporary fiction.
B. Classic novels.
C. Genre (mystery, espionage, etc.)

5) Favorite format, part III (none of the above) Fiction or non?
A. Almost entirely fiction.
B. Almost entirely non-fiction.
C. A mix of both.

6) Does the design and condition of the book matter?
A. Yes, I love a well designed book and keep mine in mint condition.
B. No, the words are what matter.
C. Yes and no, I appreciate good design and treat my books with respect but I am not obsessive about it.

7) On average how many books do you read a month?
A. I am lucky to read one.
B. I am dedicated. I read 4 or 5.
C. I am a fiend. I read 10 or more!

8) Do you prefer to own or borrow?
A. There is a particular joy in owning a book. I have a large library.
B. Why spend money when you can read it for free? I use the public library.
C. Different tools for different job. I do both.

9) Where do you get (the majority) your book news?
A. Newspapers.
B. Magazines.
C. TV
D. Blogs.

10) Are books a professional obsession?
A. Yes, I work in the field (writer, reviewer, publisher, teacher, etc.).
B. No, I do it for fun.
C. Kinda, I write the occasional review but have a regular job outside of books.

About the author

Kevin Holtsberry

I work in communications and public affairs. I try to squeeze in as much reading as I can while still spending time with my wife and two kids (and cheering on the Pittsburgh Steelers and Michigan Wolverines during football season - oh, and watching golf too).

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28 Comments

  • Book People and House Cleaning

    This morning has been a little slow. Let me try that again without the passive voice. As an aside (which is the way my brain is wired these days) does anyone else find it difficult to avoid passive voice? Does…

  • What Kind of a Book Person Am I?

    Kevin at Collected Miscellany is asking, “What Kind of Book Person Are You?” 1) What is your favorite type of bookstore? A. A large chain that is well lit, stuffed full of books, and has a café. B. A dark,…

  • 1. A
    2. A
    3. A
    4. A
    5. C
    6. C
    7. B, but close to C
    8. A
    9. D (or intranet sites)
    10. B

  • My Book Persona

    Kevin asks, “What kind of book person are you?” What is your favorite type of bookstore? I like both a “large chain that is well lit, stuffed full of books, and has a café” and a “dark, rather dusty, used…

  • 1. A (the large chain); simply because I’m more likely to find the book I’m looking for there. But B (the used book store) is attractive too, because used books are cheaper.

    2. A (new book by my favorite author) by a hair. C (friend sends me free book) is also good because I’ve often found good books via word-of-mouth that I wouldn’t have found otherwise.

    3. A (novel). No question.

    4. C (genre). Science fiction, fantasy, anything that captures the imagination.

    5. A (fiction almost exclusively).

    6. B (the words are what matter). I don’t care if it’s a nice new hardback or an old, dog-eared paperback; as long as all the pages are still in the binding, I’ll enjoy the story just as much. (Or just as little, if it’s badly written).

    7. C (10 or more per month). And you should have seen me when I was in high school: a book a day, at least.

    8. C (both own and borrow), although I lean more heavily towards borrowing. But I travel often, and don’t always have access to a good library, so owning copies of my favorites is nice.

    9. D (blogs). Although “online bulletin board forums” (fora?) is more accurate, in my case.

    10. B (just for fun).

  • 1. D — All of the above. What’s not to love about a bookstore, any bookstore?
    2. A and C are equally wonderful. B is good, too.
    3. A, definitely.
    4. D — All of the above.
    5. C
    6. C
    7. D — I am beyond a fiend. I am certifiably insane about books. I read 20+ books a month — but I’m probably closer to 300 books a year.
    8. D — Whatever it takes to have a book with me at all times. However, I’m also good about sharing my own books.
    9. E — Sometimes I get great recommendations from friends. Sometimes I just go into a bookstore and read liner notes.
    10. B

  • 1. A
    2. A
    3. A
    4. C
    5. C
    6. C
    7. C (I even once skipped school to read 8 Perry Rhodan novels that one day. The reference to Perry Rhodan should date me nicely I suspect)
    8. A
    9. E – online sources other than blogs (Amazon searches, etc.)
    10. B

  • Just so many of all the above. I love song writing, guess that tells you what field I am in. Music, reading and blogs have been my whole life. Such a variety of the arts has always been my passion.

  • 1.B
    2.B
    3.
    4.
    5.B but I also love poetry
    6.B
    7.B maybe 3 or 4
    8.C I sometimes borrow and lend
    9.A
    10.A

  • What kind of book person are you?

    Via Dean, comes a list of questions about book people preferences from Kevin. My answers are in italics at the end of each question. 1) What is your favorite type of bookstore? A. A large chain that is well lit,…

  • 1. None of the above / (A)
    2. (C)
    3. Yes
    4. Yes
    5. (C)
    6. (C)
    7. (B)
    8. (C)
    9. None of the above
    10. (B)

    For number 9 you really need to add “word of mouth” or “friends” as an option. And probably replace “blogs” with the internet. For myself, I

  • 1. B. I’ll often swing by the local Salvation Army store to see what books they have. Found a mint condition “Advise and Consent” by Allen Drury last time.
    2. A & B & C I’ma book-aholic
    3. A
    4. C
    5. C
    6. B although I prefer it not be falling apart
    7. C in my younger pre-work days I averaged that many a week
    8. A seldom manage to find time to get to the library any more. But I do make the effort two saturdays a year when they have a book sale and you can buy a large paper grocery bag full for $5
    9. D
    10. B

  • b
    c
    a
    a (although really, the answer is all of the above)
    c
    c
    c
    a
    a (word of mouth is actually my top pick. or those little “you might also like” things from Amazon)
    a

  • 1. B – the mysterious used bookstore.
    2. B – a classic I’ve wanted to read.
    3. C – poetry.
    4. C – genre, fantastic adventures.
    5. B – almost entirely non-fiction.
    6. C – I like but don’t love design.
    7. A – One a month, if I’m lucky.
    8. A – I love to own, and have lots.
    9. D – blogs, online reviews.
    10. A – yes, home and library apart.

    I like chess and war – mighty struggles not rigged by the shallowness of some author’s agenda. (Also ancient religion and cultures.) Then again, Homer’s not that shallow. Nor is J.R.R. Tolkien, in a different way. Tolstoy – etc.. But almost everything I re-read is non-fiction.

    The kind of books I like take me a long time to read properly. Good book design helps a lot, a thick paperback that doesn’t open properly is a pain. Besides, I just like big books that handle well and are easy on my eyes.

    Much of what I most want to read is out of print or costs far too much in a bad algebraic reworking (for chess books). I like Borders, but it’s haunted by thieves – I’ve had my wallet stolen there and carry an unhappy feeling because of it. A mysterious second-hand bookstore is safer and more promising, as well as more atmospheric.