16 September 2016 Susannah

Who are the biggest readers?

Book shop image

According to a World Culture Score Index the country where people read the most is India. Indians, on average, read 10 hours and 42 minutes per person per week. When you consider that there are probably a fair few people in India still unable to read, that means there are people there doing a serious amount of reading. Thailand follows with 9.24 hours per person, then China with 8 hours. Click here to see this data in graphic form.

Reading a book

Reading a book

Australia is down in 15th place with only 6.18 hours (below Saudi Arabia) and yet Australians are the highest per capita buyers of books in the English-speaking world (are Aussies buying lots of books, and just not reading them?). Americans buy the greatest number of e-books (but only 75% of adult Americans actually read a book last year – isn’t that depressing!), while China publishes more books per year than any other country. Evidently the median number of books read by a person in a year is 6 (Heavens, that’s about 2 weeks reading for me!), but the average was 15 books a year. The national average needs to be improved, in my opinion, so find a book, open the cover and sit down and do your best to improve these vital statistics.

Statistics are also showing that reading is extremely good for your health and longevity. 30 minutes of reading per day can increase your life by 6 years, and just think how many more books you can read in another 6 years of life.

How many books would you read in a year? What are your ideas for improving our national reading average? Share your comments below.

 

 

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Comments (10)

  1. Susan

    There are sources and then there are sources. The World Culture Score Index compiler seems not to be aware that New Zealand exists let alone is a a country of readers. The omission raises a question of the credibility of the statistics generally.

    • Susannah Fullerton

      With such statistics you do have to wonder about accuracy and how they were compiled. I had heard some years ago that NZ was the country that bought the most books. I have certainly done my best to add to that!

  2. Marisa Cano

    What interesting statistics! It looks like people in more economically depressed countries are intellectually richer.There’s a lesson to learnt from this… I’m happy to be doing my part: I average 65 books per year (I know because I keep lists of titles and authors), but 1 life is not enough for all the books out there I want to read before I die! And more come out each year…

    • Susannah Fullerton

      I also keep lists of all the books I read and on New Years Day I add up the number of books read that year. I think it is fascinating to look back and see which books you remember well. And I totally agree that there is never enough time to get through all the wonderful books waiting to be read!

  3. Judith Smith

    I keep lists with a brief synopsis of each book read and over the past 7 years I have managed to get through 421 books which is an average of 60 per annum. Not bad but I would love to fit more reading in as there are so many good books available.I feel cheated if I don’t read at least 100 pages a day.

    • Susannah Fullerton

      I usually manage more than 100 books per year, but it is still not enough. Do you listen to unabridged audio books? Those add quite a bit to my total.

  4. Pam

    I’m American. Last year, I read 204 books (started logging them on Goodreads) and this year I’m on track to read about 250. In my family and social circles, probably 40% are what I would call occasional readers. I don’t know anyone else who reads as much as I, except for social media friends. I belong to two book groups on Facebook and I enjoy conversing with them.

    I have tried listening to audiobooks in the car on long trips, but that was a big mistake, because I tend to fall asleep. Not good when one is driving!

    • Susannah Fullerton

      Wow, Pam, that is a fabulous number of books each year. I am envious. I manage about 130 each year. Do give audio books another try. Not only do they allow you to read as you cook, or iron, but they do give you a different perspective on books. You pick up different things because of different intonations. Keep up that wonderful reading record.

  5. I read at least 60 books a year but I also read a lot of newspaper and magazine articles. When I was younger I read a lot more.
    I must tally the books up next year. I do keep a record of the ones I have enjoyed very much or the ones I feel I can recommend to people.
    I thought being retired would give me a lot more time to read but this year has been very hectic. Obviously one of my New Years resolutions will need to be “more reading time”.
    I have just finished a Future Learn on-line course called Literature for Mental Health and Wellbeing, which has introduced me to the world of poetry. I enjoyed Athens course very much and can recommend Future Learn courses.( They are free .

    • Susannah Fullerton

      Thanks for letting me know about the Future Learn courses. I had never heard of them. I can certainly understand why poetry was included in the Mental Health and Wellbeing course – a poem a day keeps the doctor away! Do keep a tally of your reading – you might be surprised at the total each year and find you read more than you realise.

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