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Finding Leisure Reading: Leisure Reading


Leisure reading is a great pastime. There are countless benefits to "reading for fun" - both individual and social - of reading. We know from our own research, however, that Gusties don't have a lot of time to read outside of class. We know many of you love to read, though. Here are ideas, tips and suggestions for connecting with books and authors. These resources will  be useful for anyone who loves to read, whether you're a student or not. 

Finally, it will come as no surprise that the Gustavus Library is filled with people who love books and reading. Stop by and chat with any staff member about what we're reading and to ask for recommendations. Happy reading!

Library Staff Recommendations

Social Media

A great way to find new books is to connect with authors, reviewers and other readers on social media platforms. You can like author pages on Facebook and follow authors and bloggers on Twitter and Instagram. Here are some popular hashtags:

  • #reading
  • #books
  • #booksofinstagram
  • #amreading

Fiction in the Gustavus Library

We have a fairly large collection of novels in our library. Here is where you can find fiction:

  • Browsing Collection - this collection features new & popular fiction and nonfiction selections. It's located by the couches near the main entrance.
  • Any call number area staring with P (Languages and Literature). Call numbers P - PQ are on the third (top) floor. Call numbers PR - PS are on the main floor on the Chapel side of the library. It's a little tricky to browse, since works on criticism are shelved alongside novels.
  • Young Adult - Our Young Adult literature collection is on the first (bottom) floor, near the Children's Collection - look for the maroon paint on the overhang.
  • Children's Collection - find old and new favorites in the Children's Collection, bottom floor in the back (look for the bright blue paint).
  • New Books - Every new book is displayed on the shelves in the Hasselquist room (near the front entrance). Browse to find new fiction and see everything we're adding to our collection.

If you're interested in speculative fiction, we have a guide for that! And if you need help finding books on the shelf, we have a guide for that, too.

The Politics of Reading

We encourage you to diversify your reading, exploring a wide variety of voices and perspectives. As you read, please also remember that the publishing field isn't level. Statistics compiled annually by the Cooperative Children's Book Center reveal that the representation of diversity within children's publishing is, frankly, dismal. 

The freedom to read is also under attack. In the past few years, we've seen a surge of well-organized movements to ban books. We believe everyone should have the right to read what they want, free from censorship. We encourage you to keep up with the book banning news (we recommend Book Riot's Censorship News Roundup) and our own Book Bans and Challenges guide.

Celebrity Book Clubs

Many celebrities have their own book clubs. Whether you're a fan or not, keeping tabs on a couple of celebrity book clubs can help you connect with new and buzzworthy books. Here are some clubs to check out:

Minnesota Authors

Minnesota boasts an incredibly rich literary tradition. From independent book stores to top-name authors to respected presses, Minnesota has it all. Here are some highlights.


Independent Book Stores:


Keep Track of Your Reading

These sites provide ways of keeping track of what you've read, as well as recommendations, reviews and opportunities to connect with other readers.

Book Bloggers & Sites

There are a lot of book bloggers and book sites, including reviewers who get advanced copies of books and publish reviews before the books even hit the shelves. Bloggers and sites often have specific genres they review, so if you like to read a certain genre, try a Google search to find bloggers. Here are a few of our favorites:

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