Bookmarks Magazine: For Everybody Who Hasn’t Read Everything

Dear Reader:

Hope you are all enjoying the season – summer, for those of us in the northern hemisphere, winter, for you southerners.  Hey, if the winter rains get to be too much, come on up for a visit! We’re in a drought up here in the upper Midwestern USA.

Bookmarks Magazine

I’ve been meaning to write a post about Bookmarks for awhile.  I’ve subscribed to this bimonthly magazine for years (did you know that bimonthly can mean either twice a month or every two months?  No wonder I always struggle to decide what word to use. In this case, I mean every other month).

May/June 2012 Issue

Bookmarks is devoted to books, especially literary books – let’s say, middlebrow to highbrow.  It gathers up, synthesizes, and summarizes book reviews from newspapers and magazines and presents an overview of current books in each issue.

The above photo is of their New Books Guide section which has fiction: literary, science fiction, young adult and nonfiction: general, biography, and history subsections.  I think they also usually have crime and/or mystery subsections – but not in the current issue.  This part of the magazine features “Bookmark Selections” that are books averaging ratings of four (excellent) or five (classic) across reviews.

They typically include an article about a type of literature – in this case, Caribbean.

Usually, they also run an article focused on a superlative author: Faulkner, Roth, Atwood, etc.  But in this issue, they instead included this article about “novels of ancient Rome.”

One of my favorite regular features is their column on a particular book group.  I’ve never been in one, but I’m fascinated by how these groups come together, choose books, and organize themselves.

They provide a page showing all of that issue’s “selections” – the top-reviewed books.

And show you which books were reviewed the most.

They tell us what books are coming soon and include a “now in paperback” page for books they reviewed as hard covers.

Additional columns cover major book awards, “have you read?” where readers write up their favorite books along a theme, and “the year in books” – a column of notable and best sellers for a particular year (in this issue, 1987).

I don’t know of any other magazine or periodical quite like it.  There are the New York Times Book Review, the New York Review of Books, and the Times Literary Supplement and other book supplements – but I don’t enjoy any of them nearly as much as Bookmarks.  These other book-related periodicals cover a lot of books that don’t interest me and are frequently a bit too highbrow to keep my attention.

Bookmarks hits my sweet spot between middle and high perfectly.  I often read the magazine cover to cover and it helps inform my book buys.  However, I mostly just enjoy reading about authors and their books, whether or not I eventually choose to read the actual books.

They have a great Bookmarks website.  Check it out and consider subscribing for yourself or your local library.  I think you’ll enjoy it.

My Neighborhood Watch Dog

Happy Reading! Ruby

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3 Comments

  1. My, what an attractive dog.
    How can you possibly spend so much time reading when you have a lovely dog like that who needs undivided attention? 🙂 (I promised Gus I’d plug for more Golden petting!)

    • Wow, crafty dog! I’m working on my one-handed reading skills – one hand for the book, one hand for the dog. Thanks for the reminder. Ruby

  2. I was not aware of this publication; thanks for the heads up!

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