Joe Queenan reads so many books, it’s amazing that he can also find time to write them. Queenan estimates he’s read between 6,000 and 7,000 books total, at a rate of about 125 books a year — (or 100 in a “slow” year). “Some years I just went completely nuts,” Queenan tells NPR’s Robert Siegel. “A couple years ago I read about 250. I was trying to read a book every single day of the year but I kind of ran out of gas.”
Queenan is the author of nine books on a diversity of topics: from Closing Time, a memoir about his childhood in a Philadelphia housing project, to Imperial Caddy, a humorous takedown of Dan Quayle. His latest work, called One for the Books, is a meditation on his lifelong obsession with reading. He talks with Siegel about what he reads, why he reads and how he loves books but hates book clubs.
Definitely read and listen to the interview NPR provides. Queenan has some interesting things to say about libraries (including “most of the books you see in the library shelves are terrible”), bookstores (booksellers recommend books on his appearance), and book clubs (“there’s no theme”). Although I find his constant use of the word “stupid” annoying, he does offer some insight on how he plans what he reads next, what he considers trashy reads, and how many books he thinks the average person reads.
Makes my goal of 50 books a year seem puny.
(Have you voted yet for the 2012 Goodreads Choice Awards?)