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Comments for Weekly Geeks 2010-14-2010: Reading Globally

I'm a Weekly GeekWeekly Geeks 2010-14-2010: Reading Globally: 04/24/10

I love reading novels which represent different countries around the world - either the author lives in that country or the book is based in that country. I have a personal challenge to read at least one novel for every country in the world ... and I'm not the only blogger out there who is striving to do that. But even if you are not motivated to experience every country through books, many readers enjoy traveling the world through books.

So this week's Weekly Geek task (if you chose to accept it), is to tell us a little about your experiences Reading Globally. Answer as many or as few of the questions below:

  • Do you deliberately read globally, and if so, do you track your reading in this area?
  • Have you joined any reading challenges which encourage reading from around the world? If so, what are they?
  • Do you visit bloggers who blog outside of your country? If so, what have you learned from reading their blogs? Consider sharing a couple of links to book bloggers who motivate you to read around the world.
  • Where do your reading around the globe book suggestions come from? Magazines? Web sites which feature books in translation? Publishers? Other bloggers? If you have a particularly great site for recommendations, give us a link!
  • Do you read books in translation as part of your global reading experiences? Share some of your favorite books in translation.
  • Is there a particular country, or countries, which you would like to learn more about? Why?

View Book Settings in a larger map

The last time we were asked about where our books come from I started a Google Map to track the location of my books. I wish I had kept it current so I would have hundreds of points marked on it instead of dozens. Although my map isn't a completely accurate portrayal of what I've reviewed on this book blog, it is representative.

By looking at the points alone it looks like I mostly read books from the United States and Western Europe. Zoom in a little more you'll see the breakdown is California, New York, Illinois points in England and Ireland. Keep zooming in if you want to see specific cities or even addresses represented.

How do I determine a location marker?

  • If the book mentions a location, I pick it. It could be an address, a city, a state or a country. If I can find it on a map, I put a marker there. Of course sometimes the location is completely fictional but if it can still be located by way of real world landmarks, I place a marker where it would be if it were a real location.
  • By author: if the book doesn't mention a location or if the story takes place in a completely (non-Earth) location (like a different planet or a fantasy realm with no ties to real world landmarks) then I mark the location by the author's place of birth.
  • By illustrator: if the author's location isn't readily available but there's also an illustrator and his or her location is known, I will mark it.
  • By publisher: when all else fails, I will use the publisher's business address so at least we can get a sense of country of origin.

Other Global Questions:

  • Do I participate in global reading challenges?
    No, I have not joined a global reading challenge.

  • Do I read blogs outside my own country?
    Yes of course! I think I will do a separate blog post highlighting the locations of my favorite blogs.

  • Where do I get the suggestions to read the books that I do?
    I don't track where the recommendations come from. I just keep a list of books that I want to read.

  • Do I read books in translation?
    Yes. I wish I could read more languages than I do. Besides English, I can read Spanish, French and German. But typically the translations are easier to get.

  • Is there a specific country I want to learn more about through books?
    Locations I gravitate towards: Wales, Australia, Italy, the Navajo Nation, Egypt and India.

Comments (8)


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Comment #1: Saturday, April, 24, 2010 at 18:54:57

Kathy (mommysreading)

WOW! You do a great job keeping track of your global locations. I am guilty of primarily US and UK locations also.

Comment #2: Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 22:55:58


It's just a small percentage of the books I've read on that map. I hope to get the map better filled in.

Comment #3: Saturday, April, 24, 2010 at 21:22:13


I love your google map showing all your locations. I might have to think about one of those myself. I am also jealous of your multilingual abilities - I often wonder if the translations I read are as good as the originals.

Comment #4: Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 23:10:12


The google maps are very easy to set up and equally addicting.

Comment #5: Sunday, April, 25, 2010 at 00:24:32


Love the map! Wish I'd thought of it.

Comment #6: Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 23:13:02


You can do it the next time the question is asked. It's bound to come up again.

Comment #7: Sunday, April, 25, 2010 at 02:06:29


I like your Google map Puss - does provide an interesting dimension. I tried something similar last year with a Frappr Map but unfortunately the map seems to have died.

Comment #8: Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 23:16:20


Thank you! My map's at least a year old. If you decide to start again, Google Maps seems to be a stable platform.

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