What Books Do You Take When You Travel?

I'm getting ready to fly to Philadelphia to teach at Loop this weekend and as I agonized over what books and how many to take to read I wondered how other people choose their travel books.

I love to read on planes. I can’t work very well, beyond making notes or lists. There is too much going one around me. When I read I can just fall into a book and zone out. It seems the right kind of treat for the annoying thing that plane travel has become.

I have several books loaded on the Kindle app on my iPad, but I always add a new one – this time it’s Slow Horses by Mick Herron pulled from this list on NPR by Nancy Pearl. I like reading on my iPad when I knit on the plane and I can read in the dark if I’m sharing a hotel room. I mostly read mystery, fiction and anything that has to do with textiles.

I take at least one book I’m reading for review and an audio book or two.  Audio books are great for when I have insomnia (which is often), if I’m knitting something tricky or have a jabberer next to me on the plane.

I bring one (sometimes two) books I can read and leave behind or give away. My husband is an independent book rep for 40 or so publishers; he sells to independent bookshops (yay!).  In our garage of abundance, at any given time, we have at least three library carts full of Advanced Reader Copies of books. ARCs are quickly printed black and white, with no page design, versions of books. They are used to get booksellers to read and get excited about forthcoming publications. Booksellers sometimes preorder six months before a book is officially published, before the designed book is even at the printer.

I have had great book conversations with other readers in airports and just out and about when I travel and it’s so wonderful to say, “I just finished this, would you like it?”

Now let’s not talk about the books I buy when I travel.