Nearly One-Third of Young Adults Strongly Identify as Readers

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Welcome to Today in Books, where we report on literary headlines at the intersection of politics, culture, media, and more.

Paul Auster Has Died at 77

Paul Auster, the “patron saint of literary Brooklyn” has died of complications of lung cancer. Best known for “The New York Trilogy,” which began with 1985’s City of Glass, Auster was nominated for and won numerous awards both at home and abroad. His last novel, 2017’s 4 3 2 1, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. Learn more about The New York Trilogy here.

An Adaptation Triple-Feature

Three quick hits for the page-to-screen fans.

  1. Netflix has confirmed that Greta Gerwig will helm a new adaptation of C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia, to begin filming later this year. The blockbuster Barbie creator has signed on for two films (there are seven books in the series). Will Netflix attempt to make a seven-film series happen eventually, or will Gerwig, whose vision Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos hailed as “bigger and bolder” but still “rooted in faith,” condense the stories down to create something more potent?
  2. We’re so deep in the land of TikTok romantasy hits now that it feels like a million years since Colleen Hoover’s It Ends With Us was all the rage. People has an exclusive first look at the adaptation hitting theaters August 9, if that’s something you’re into. 
  3. You like books. You like British TV. You’re probably going to love the UKTV’s forthcoming Bookish, about an “erudite and unconventional” antiquarian bookseller who sets out to solve three crimes committed at his shop.

The Kids Might Be All Right

A new report commissioned by HarperCollins in collaboration with NielsenBook contains a lot of fascinating data about children’s pleasure-reading. While other outlets are focusing on the fact that <gasp> more than a quarter of YA readers are over the age of 28—making a thing out of adults reading YA is so two-thousand-and-late—I want to pull out this bit: 

The research also showed that 29% of 14- to 25-year-olds “strongly think of themselves as a reader”, with many of these young people choosing to build an identity around books online, on platforms such as TikTok and Instagram. Of the young people surveyed who answered “very true” to the statement “I think of myself as a reader” 40% described themselves as “very happy”. In contrast, 21% of those who did not think of themselves as readers described themselves as “very happy”.

Now, correlation does not equal causation, but this is heartening stuff. Nearly one-third of teens and young adults strongly identify as readers! How is that not the headline?! (Clickbait is how.) If it’s having a positive impact on their health and happiness, all the better. 

Bookish Gifts for Grads

It’s that time of year when Oh, the Places You’ll Go shoots to the top of bestseller lists again. Do something more creative and reach for one of these bookish gifts for grads instead.

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