Books on the shelves of the Fraser Valley Regional Library branch in Langley City. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)

Books on the shelves of the Fraser Valley Regional Library branch in Langley City. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)

In Our View: Books can fill a quiet summer

Reading has many positive impacts, including being really enjoyable

Whether in a hammock in the backyard, by the pool, or on the couch next to a fan, sitting down with a good book is one of the great pleasures of summer.

Libraries encourage reading through the summer for kids who are out of school, but all ages can benefit from the chance to decompress from the busy and frenetic worlds of work, electronic devices, and social media that a book provides.

The Summer Reading Clubs at the Fraser Valley Regional Library – which serves Langley with branches in the City and every major Township neighbourhood – have clubs for every age group this year.

They start with the Read To Me club for pre-schoolers and go right up to teens and adults, and every age group is eligible for prizes.

The clubs kicked off on June 21, but you can still register on fvrlca.beanstack.org.

Reading 15 minutes or more each day enters people for prizes – which are bookstore gift cards, allowing you to read more, of course.

Those who don’t want to use an app to track their reading can pick up a reading record in person at any FVRL branch and drop it off again to enter the same draws. (Sadly, only kids get stickers for doing so. Us adults will have to go buy our own.)

Reading regularly has been found to have a lot of practical benefits in life for both adults and children – developing lifelong literacy can do everything from increasing your vocabulary to reducing stress and even lowering blood pressure, according to studies.

However, the best reason to read is that it’s fun. Books are cheap (you can’t get cheaper than a free library book), and shareable.

You can talk about them with friends and family and seek out new books together.

There are tens of thousands of titles, so there’s no question you’ll be able to find a great book to while away a few hours this summer.

If you haven’t been reading much of late, summer if the best time to rekindle a relationship with books.

Think back to those days when a book, comic, or graphic novel could take you out of your day to day life more effectively than any TV show or movie, and hunt down a title that does that again, now.

– M.C.

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