From The Wall Street Journal:
Seven years ago last week, I started keeping a record of the books I had read. I have only my unreliable memory for what I read before July 27, 2005.
However old you are, begin a reading log now. Keep it simple and convenient. I use small Paperblanks notebooks because I like the sound of the covers snapping shut, but there’s an iPhone app, Reader Tracker, or you can tweet book titles to I’vRead.
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A few weeks ago a friend told me she had recently reread “Julie of the Wolves” by Jean Craighead George. I remembered one of George’s other novels for what are now called young adults, “My Side of the Mountain,” which I reread compulsively when I was a child. That reminded me of how many books I have lost from my early reading years. If you have children who are readers, do them a favor and start keeping a book list for them until they’re ready to do it for themselves.
My book journal charts my vacations—I went to Scotland in 2006 and read “Outlander” by Diane Gabaldon and “The Game of Kings” by Dorothy Dunnett. While in Ireland in 2007, I read “Troubles” by J.G. Farrell; “Round Ireland With a Fridge” by Tony Hawks; and “Famine” by Liam O’Flaherty.
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My late father-in-law kept a book journal for decades, and at his memorial service, my brother-in-law read excerpts from it. To me it was like listening to poetry, the poet revealing his curiosity and gratification in the condensation of book titles. Keep a book journal, for yourself and for all who follow you.
Link to the rest at The Wall Street Journal (Link may expire)