search-icon

How to Finish a Book in a Day

by | July 10

I set a pretty hefty personal reading goal this year—one hundred books. That’s 30 more than I managed to get through last year, and I won’t lie, it’s a daunting task. In order to tackle this, I’m going to have to utilize a few tricks for zooming through a book…including how to read a whole book in one day!

Now, this might sound impossible unless you have a long day with zero responsibilities in front of you, or a book that’s about twenty pages long—but it’s actually easier than you might think! With these tips, you’ll be able to tackle a book in a breezy 12-to-24-hour period, even if you have other things to get done.

1.  Learn to walk and read at the same time.

I don’t mean walk with your face in a book down a sidewalk or street—that’s dangerous and silly. But sitting for too long will be sure to make you feel stiff and creaky. Pacing your living room with a book in hand has the benefit of making you look like a brilliant, tortured intellectual while also preventing your knees from locking!

City of Ashes

City of Ashes

by Cassandra Clare

2.   Try a plot-driven book.

It is an irrefutable fact that you will read faster when you’re really immersed in a book.Try young adult or science fiction books if you’re looking for great plots! The last book I read in a day was the young adult urban fantasy City of Ashes—it had the perfect, unputdownable mix of action, adventure, and romance.

Space Opera

Space Opera

by Catherynne M. Valente

3.   Shake up your formats!

I recommend ebooks or paperbacks if you’re trying to read a book in a day, because they’re easier to carry around and not as heavy. But if you’re a hardcover diehard, I recommend picking up a less hefty book, like Catherynne M. Valente’s rip-roaring science fiction glam-rock adventure Space Opera. Try something new and play around!

All By Myself, Alone

All By Myself, Alone

by Mary Higgins Clark
4.  Try an audiobook when you’re on the go!

Audiobooks are great if you have a lot of running around to do, a commute where you drive, or if you start to get eye strain. Plus, audiobooks tell you right away how much time you have to commit—Mary Higgins Clark’s nail-biter All By Myself, Alone will only take you six and a half hours to get through!

Through the Woods

Through the Woods

by Emily Carroll

5.   Give graphic novels a shot.

The visual format of a graphic novel has always appealed to me, and I tend to speed through them. Emily Carroll’s masterful horror comic collection Through the Woods took me an hour and a half to get through—the art is so beautiful it’s tough to tear your eyes away.

I'm Thinking of Ending Things

I'm Thinking of Ending Things

by Iain Reid

6.   Read on your commute.

I have a 45-minute commute to and from work that is fantastic for getting a huge chunk of reading done. I nearly finished Iain Reid’s strange and terrifying I’m Thinking of Ending Things just riding the M Train! You’ll be shocked how much time you spend traveling—and how easy it is to spend that time reading, too.

Dating You / Hating You

Dating You / Hating You

by Christina Lauren

7.   Read in line.

I have finished more than one book waiting for my ticket to come up at the DMV. Just saying. Try something like Dating You/Hating You by Christina Lauren—a book so fun that it will make you forget you’ve been waiting for two hours!

The Comfort Food Diaries

The Comfort Food Diaries

by Emily Nunn

8.   Read when you eat.

You don’t need to take a break for a meal! In fact, a good book is part of a balanced diet. Food can also enhance the experience of what you’re reading—I definitely recommend Emily Nunn’s The Comfort Food Diaries with a side helping of pie.

9.  Take breaks.

This is so, so important—put the book down sometimes. It sounds counter-intuitive, but you’re more likely to retain what you’re reading if you give your brain a break. But make sure whatever you grab is good enough that you’ll be dying to pick it back up again.

Love to get lit... erary? Sign up to get the latest delivered to your inbox!
Casey is a former subsidiary rights assistant for Simon & Schuster Children's Books. She was born and raised in Chicago, IL, and attended Emerson College in Boston, MA. Lately she's been really into romantic comedies, but she's always a sucker for a good dystopia or thriller. Outside of reading and writing, she also enjoys long, aimless walks through the city, listening to podcasts, petting dogs, and drinking what could be considered an unhealthy amount of coffee.