Nate at The Digital Reader alerted me to a great little article called Nine Reasons Being a Book-Loving Shut-In is Better Than Being a Social Butterfly. “Don’t go out, stay in!” the article begins. And then, author Mark proceeds to enumerate the perks of the home reading experience: unlimited food and drink of your choice, a comfy chair, no dress code and an unbeatable commute.

This was a timely read for me because I had an unusually busy holiday season, with much family time and very little alone time. My first week back, I was fantasizing about the quality quiet time I would have on the weekend—at last!

I treasure that timeless ‘curling up with a good book’ experience, and thanks to the slimming down and prettying up of modern ebook devices, I find that the pixel experience is just the same as the paper one. And sure, I can snag a chapter or two of bus or subway reading on my phone, or read on my iPad over lunch or at a coffee shop. But when I am tucking in—really tucking in—-to read for awhile, I do have some required ingredients. If I were ‘staying in’ and really going at it for a perfect, quiet night at home, here’s what it would look like:

1) Food and Drink. Not usually necessary for me. Sometimes, a tea is nice. I like the Stash brand, which has a variety of fancy-but-affordable flavours such as Vanilla Chai and Chocolate Mint.

2) Comfy Chair. The front light on my Glo makes reading anywhere super-easy, because I don’t have to worry about going where the lamps are. My favourite thing to do is sprawl out on the couch with the Kobo balanced on my knees. We have two identical comfy couches, and the Beloved usually spends my reading time on the other couch—far enough away that his video game noises  won’t bother me, but close enough that he can blow me a kiss or wave hi to me when I look up from my book to check on him.

3) Dress Code. Fuzzy socks and a fleece blanket are mandatory (except in the dead of summer, which equates to about nine days in July here in the Canadian Hinterlands). Otherwise, I am not picky.

So, there you go: tea, couch, blanket and fuzzy socks. Add in a book, and I am good to go! How about you? What does your perfect reading night look like?

Editor’s Note: Paul StJohn Mackintosh had a slightly different reaction to the orginal post, which we covered yesterday.

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"I’m a journalist, a teacher and an e-book fiend. I work as a French teacher at a K-3 private school. I use drama, music, puppets, props and all manner of tech in my job, and I love it. I enjoy moving between all the classes and having a relationship with each child in the school. Kids are hilarious, and I enjoy watching them grow and learn. My current device of choice for reading is my Amazon Kindle Touch, but I have owned or used devices by Sony, Kobo, Aluratek and others. I also read on my tablet devices using the Kindle app, and I enjoy synching between them, so that I’m always up to date no matter where I am or what I have with me."


  1. Freshly showered, hair freshly shampooed, wrapped in a warm fuzzy robe and slippers, curled up in my very comfy reading chair, with snow falling on a windless night outside the windows in our second floor sun room. Fireplace lit, baroque music or Gregorian chant playing softly in the background, glass of wine and a good book.


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