Why Am I Reading a Dozen Books at Once?

Jim LaBate
6 min readJun 23, 2022
Jim LaBate at the Northshire Bookstore in Manchester, Vermont

Have you ever read a feature story about a celebrity where the writer/interviewer asks, “What books are you reading now?” Or “What’s on your bookshelf?”

Usually, the answer includes two or three current books and maybe one or two classics. The question and answers are intended to reveal another side of the celebrity, not necessarily what that person is like on stage or in the limelight but, instead, what that person is thinking or absorbing when away from his or her profession. While I am not a celebrity by any means, if asked what I am reading these days, I would have to admit that on this day, I am in the midst of reading a dozen books.

A dozen? Really? That’s crazy, right?

Yet, it’s true. As I sit in a comfortable recliner in our living room, I have twelve books sitting nearby, either on the floor or on the end table to my left. I will list all the titles and authors at the end of this essay, but for now, I will try to explain how this craziness occurred.

Photo by Jim LaBate

I have not always been such a lunatic when it comes to reading, though even as a young boy, reading was always one of my favorite activities. I didn’t necessarily want to read…



Jim LaBate

Jim LaBate is a writer and teacher who assists in The Writing Center at Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC) in Troy, New York.