I had some emails in response to the summer literacy tips post, specifically about getting excited about books-- so I thought I would share one of the most successful ways to get excited about a book. This applies to all readers, reluctant or not!
Lots of readers spend a significant, although perhaps small, amount of time previewing books before they commit. Reluctant readers need to develop this skill because it will help them find books that are really interesting rather than starting a million different books that they don't find to their taste, then giving up and feeling discouraged about reading. One of the fastest and easiest ways to preview books is by watching videos! Book trailers are becoming more and more common, with publishers often creating a trailer for new releases to get readers excited and interested in their books.
I also really enjoy video clips that provide a little more than a preview . . . a short summary of the book, especially for longer or more complex plots, really helps me understand what I'm reading and allows me to get invested in the story. There are more and more of these summary & preview clips popping up all over the place, from YouTube, book websites, and more. Some of my favorites are on the website Academic Earth, where the drawings in the videos are an entertaining way to get an overview of the book. I watched the Atlas Shrugged one the other day, and was grateful I did when the book came up in casual conversation . . . it's been a while since I've read that book (not to mention it's length can be an obstacle to remembering details . . .)!
Book trailers and overviews, in video form, are one of the best ways to get interested in a book, especially for a generation of readers who are more inclined to watch a short video that is a couple of clicks away rather than read articles or lengthy book reviews. These videos are such a valuable tool! Do a web search on your book title + book trailer, and I'm sure you'll come up with a few options that can spark some book excitement!