Reading buddies – why you should try it

Posted 19-02-2021 by Marion in Allgemein, Discussions / 11 Comments

Hello, my lovely sweet peas!

Over the last year or more I have done quite a lot of buddy reads. I mean, not overly many, it’s not like I’m not able to read my books all by my lonesome, please and thank you, but every now and then I really enjoy doing it and I’ve been asked about my experiences with it by quite some people who have never tried, so I thought I’d make a post about it.

First of all, there are always the usual questions before I’ll make my case to convince you to at least try it once.

Frequently Asked Questions about buddy reads:

What are reading buddies?

Well, simply put it’s a person that you read a book with. You can have one or two or twenty buddies but so far I have either read with my book club or with a single buddy.

What kind of reading buddies are there?

Just like there are a million different readers out there, there are also at least a million different buddies out there in this big, wide world. People read differently and at different speeds and have different reading habits.
This is why I would recommend to pick your reading buddy carefully and make a plan – or no plan – how you wanna go about this book you’ve chosen.

Ways you can go about reading your book with your buddy:

  • Take stock and count the pages/chapters. Agree on how many pages or chapters you want to read with your buddy until a specific day. This is for planners and people who can easily stick to a tbr.
  • Agree on a specific date and see how far you both get until then. This is for mood readers and casual buddy reading.
  • Agree on a specific date and make sure you don’t read farther than x. This way you (or your buddy) won’t just finish the book without each other.

I’m sure there are other ways to do it as well, and if you have ideas: great! Don’t hesitate to tell me how you are going about it!

What can I read with my buddy?

You can read pretty much everything and anything. You can read whatever you like. There are no restictions. You should, however, like I said above about choosing your buddy also be careful about choosing a book. Reading a book you are not in the mood for with a buddy might result in an unpleasant reading experience and in that case not only for yourself but also for your buddy. Which is sad! Would you like your reading buddy to ruin your experience? No! So better make plans first and be sure that you both want to read the book that you have agreed on or otherwise maybe postpone the book and read something different with your buddy.

My experiences with reading buddies and why you should try it too

I have started reading with buddies in 2019, I think? So far I have enjoyed most of the books that I have read with them. I have tried different buddies and different books and different ways how you could go about those books. It was great fun for me.

I remember my first buddy read very vividly. It was “Stalking Jack the Ripper” by Kerri Maniscalco. My buddy and I agreed to do go slow and read until the end of a certain chapter till the end of the week. First it went rather well. The read writing style was not bad and I got along nicely – with my buddy reads I’m always worried that I cannot keep track, that’s why I mostly read with buddies now that understand my need to moodread and cannot stick to sections very well.
I was actually not too blown away by this book but my buddy loved it and we had a lot to discuss. This, in my opinion is my favourite part about buddy reads. The connection with another reader that reads the book at the same time as you do, that is in the same mindset and that experiences it all with you. I absolutely love that.

Of course it’s always nicer if you are actually both enjoying the book. Which is, I think, the reason why I really love reading Agatha Christie novels with friends. I’m currently reading “Death on the Nile” with a dear friend and I’m absolutely psyched. We are usually doing the we-are-reading-until-the-end-of-the-week-and-see-how-it-goes- kind of thing and it has worked beautifully so far. Corinna is usually a little faster than me but she’s very understanding. She even waits a little for me.
So far we have enjoyed all the Poirots we have read together and we had some really stimulating spitballing about the plot, about who might be the murderer, what details we have picked up and if it was relevant to the solving of the case – it’s just so great.

Which is why I think that mysteries are the best kind of books to read with a buddy. There is so much to discuss and so much fun.

Of course, I have also read other books with buddies, not only mysteries. I tend to read Middlegrade books with Sammie @ The Bookwyrm Den and I enjoy that immensly as well. A good book with a good worldbuilding and a great characters is always worth a look because there is so much to compare and to discuss. I can’t wait for “Bridge of Souls” by Victoria Schwab to finally be released since that’s the book we have agreed upon to read next.

Of course not all reading with buddies will go smoothly. I remember a buddy read last year where my buddy and I just couldn’t get into the book we had picked and we decided to give up on it. Maybe we will read it at a later time or maybe we will never pick that one up again. So far Mariken and I have not reached a conclusion. But these things happen. I think it’s important to know when to give up as well.

Why should you try it too?

Reading books with a buddy or even with a bookclub is a great experience. Reading a book and being able to share you opinions, ideas, rants and question with another person who goes through the same things at roughly the same time as you, is, to put it bluntly, exhilarating. It brings you a lot closer to the source, to the book and gives you a chance at different perspectives and a closer look at this book. It’s different from merely putting together your thoughts for a review. It’s reading at a much more closer range.

Reading is usually a more solitary thing. You read the book at your own pace and if you want to review it, you will put your thoughts on a page and sent it out into the world for others to read them and hopefully give you a little bit feedback.
With a reading buddy, reading a book can be a much bigger thing, a feat that you share and were an exchange is almost imminent and definitely a given. If sharing and discussion is what you want, I would definitely recommend. I surely love that part of having a reading buddy even if it turns out that I’m not too fond of the book itself.

I hope I gave you a proper introduction into this topic. Should you’ve never tried it before, I really think you should try it at least once. If you have a request to read a book with me or more question, don’t hesitate to ask!

Have you ever tried reading a book with a buddy? What are your experiences? Any tipps or something you want to add?

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11 responses to “Reading buddies – why you should try it

  1. I don’t do buddy reads a lot but I absolutely adore them when I do! It’s also a really great way to interact more with online reading friends. I’ve participated in all the ways that you suggested. I have also joined a couple in discord groups in which there isn’t really a timeline, rather everyone just posts updates and thoughts under spoiler tags in the group and everyone can go back and forth as they reach those sections. I find it’s a really fun and stress-less way to buddy read. Absolutely loved this post. Happy reading!

    • I have never been part of a discord but I’m part of a monthly bookclub where it’s pretty much the same and I absolutely love it. It’s so nice to spitball about what might happen next with other people while reading and that’s the thing I like most about buddy reads, I think.
      Thank you so much for your comment! <3

  2. Ich mache gerne Buddy-reads, finde aber immer nur zufällig Leute auf Instagram, die gerade ein Buch lesen wollen, das ich auch lesen will. Früher hatte ich zwei Freundinnen, mit denen ich regelmäßig zusammen gelesen habe, aber eine hat sich dann nicht mehr gemeldet und die andere liest zur Zeit recht wenig.
    An sich mag ich Buddy-reads aber wirklich gerne 🙂

    • Ich schaue mir deswegen immer gerne die Regale auf anderer Leute Goodreads an. 😉 Ich mag buddy reads eigentlich sehr gerne. Manchmal funktioniert es nicht so, aber ich hab doch ein-zwei, mit denen ich alle paar Monate mal ein Buch gemeinsam lese. 🙂

      • Not really. My friend and I are really lenient so our only goal is that we read the book by the end of the month, but we usually read the books around the same time because we’ll see that the other started it and be inspired to read it. I have noticed that she always finishes the books before me though haha

  3. Lies, Mari! We definitely need to get to Aurora Burning before Bridge of Souls comes out … or at least I hope so. 😉 At this point, though, all bets are off, and maybe Bridge of Souls will come out first LOL. xD I love this post! I don’t do as many buddy reads anymore as I used to, but I just love having someone to discuss books with and hash out what’s going on and gush about things you love. It’s a whole different reading experience!

    • Well, I didn’t know that you were reading Aurora Rising when I wrote this post. 😂 And Bridge of Souls comes out…on Tuesday?! You know, I’m just excited for both! How are you doing with Aurora Rising anyway?

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