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Five Essential Reference Books for Avid Readers

Five Essential Reference Books for Avid Readers

If you like to read, you probably spend hours at the library, bookstore, or on your e-reader selecting books that will satisfy your reading desires. But pleasure books aren't the only books you should invest your time and money in. Whether you prefer fiction or nonfiction, you can make this favorite pastime even better by collecting a few key reference books for readers. These books will not only enhance your reading experience time and time again, but they also make great gifts for the book lovers on your gift list.

Print dictionary. Even those who use e-readers with built-in dictionaries can't go wrong with an old-fashioned print dictionary to consult and peruse. Having a dictionary at your fingertips while reading will come in handy when you stumble across those unfamiliar words that can't be explained in their context. Print dictionaries come in all sizes, shapes, styles, and formats; choose one that's compact, easy to navigate, and comprehensive--perfect for active readers.

Reader's journal. Do you like to take notes while you're reading or jot down your thoughts after finishing a particularly intriguing novel? A reader's journal is a great resource for recording anything and everything about a reading experience. Reader's journals specifically designed for readers are available for sale, but you can also create your own reader's journal with a blank notebook. Find one with a decorative cover, or decorate it yourself and add a label.  

Books about reading. Whether you want to learn more about your favorite author, gain a better understanding of the best ways to read a book or find a discussion on the greatest books of all time, books about books and reading are excellent resources that can enhance the reading experience and lead to ideas for further reading. You can find an abundance of books related to the activity of reading by visiting online booksellers as well as brick-and-mortar bookstores.   

 A comprehensive history book. Book settings cover a range of dates that go back to the beginning of history. A comprehensive history book is a great tool for readers who want to know more about what was happening in real life before, during, and after the time period used in a book's setting. History books can give readers a better mental and visual understanding of the stories they read and are useful for readers of modern and historical fiction and nonfiction.

Geographic atlas. Atlases are another way to gain a clearer picture of a book's setting. Atlases display the geography of an area and make it easier for readers to pinpoint where a story takes place. Atlases come in many types, including world atlases, regional atlases, historical atlases, and biblical atlases. Choose one that matches reading interests but that is also age-appropriate, up-to-date, and manageable in size. 

Reading is a favorite pastime that can be made even better with a few important reference books. Invest in any or all of the above, and see how you can enhance the reading experience for yourself--or your book-loving friends. 

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