Six for Sunday: Books to Get You Out of a Slump

Six for Sunday is a bookish meme created and hosted by Steph at A Little But a Lot.

This Sunday’s topic:

Books to get people out of reading slumps

We all suffer from reading slumps every now and then. Actually, I recently crawled out of one. It was the longest slump I’ve ever endured and a wicked one at that because it was both a reading and blogging slump. Although I managed to read and blog some during it, it wasn’t to the level of enjoyment and energy that I usually participate in those activities.

I think to determine what’s best to help you out of a slump, you first have to figure out what caused the slump. If it’s because you’ve been reading too much of one genre, then switching to a different genre could cure the slump. If it’s because you’ve been reading too much too fast (say, for a readathon), then switching to shorter, lighter reads and taking the time to fully take them in could help — or taking a break from reading. It’s the same, I think, if the slump is brought on by having a busy schedule that either leaves no time for reading or that makes you so tired that the thought of reading exhausts you (which was my case).

However, if a break from reading isn’t needed, I usually turn to these sorts of books to help me out of slumps.

Comics and Graphic Novels

These days, comics/graphic novels and picture books (next section) are my immediate go-tos when I feel a reading slump coming on. Comics are short and are enough to quickly engaged me and make me curious about what comes next (if it’s a series), which will keep me reading and pull me out of the slump.

Here are two I’d recommend:

Saga, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan, illus. by Fiona Staples

Saga is now extremely popular and is one of the first comic books I tried when I began exploring the medium. It’s a fantasy series about a couple on the run from the governments of their respective planets, which are at war against each other. This comic series is for mature audiences due to its violent and sexual content; however, it is engaging, humorous at times, and taps into complexities in relationships that we can all relate to. After reading the first volume, you will want to immediately grab the next. And the illustrations are amazing!

Wytches Vol. 1 by Scott Snyder, illus. by Jock

Wytches was an intriguing read that had me hoping another volume would be released. It’s a horror story about a small family that moves to a new town after a traumatic experience and encounter a terrifying being in the woods there. The story isn’t scary, but it is creepy, and the art helps to emphasize that.

Picture Books

Picture books are another of my go-tos when I’m in a reading slump. Picture books are often short and lighthearted, making them quick, light reads that are sometimes uplifting. Even when they a more informational, like a nonfiction picture book, the information is often presented in short bites that are easy to digest, making the reading experience pleasurable and not too taxing — which is important if you’re in a slump: You still want to take in information and enjoy reading, but you don’t want the activity to cost too much (i.e., stress, anxiety, exertion).

Here are two I’d recommend:

Every Tree Has a Story by Cécile Benoist, illus. by Charlotte Gaustaut, transl. from the French by Sylvia Rucker

This was a recent read that immediately became a favorite. It’s a nonfiction picture book about various trees around the world: the tallest, the oldest, etc. The information is presented alongside detailed, zentangle-like illustrations of the trees discussed.

Lucy by Randy Cecil (illus.)

A sweet story about a stray dog called Lucy, the girl who befriends her, and the girl’s single dad, a juggler who has stage fright. It’s a sweet, simple, enjoyable story.

Middle Grade Novels

If my slump isn’t too bad allowing me to read a novel, I’ll most likely pick up a middle grade novel. Middle grade books are fun reads, especially the SFF ones, which are often full of adventures. They also tend not to take themselves too seriously — as YA novels often do. Many have a lot of depth and dig into interesting discussions as well, but you still have a lot of entertainment and fun along the way.

Here are two I’d recommend:

The Fog Diver by Joel Ross

It’s a fast-paced dystopian novel set in the future. A deadly white fog has covered the earth causing humans to live only on the highest mountains. To get around, people use airships and to make a living, poor, orphan kids, like the protagonist, Chess, fog-dive to the earth to scavenge for things they can sell to survive. It was such a fun read! I think my favorite bits were when the characters tried to make sense of things we do today, like golfing.

Percy Jackson & the Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

Another fast-paced story. This one is fantasy set in the present about a boy who learns that he is a demigod because his father is the Greek god, Poseidon. I love this series and if you enjoy reading about Greek and Roman mythology (or just enjoy a fun story), you’ll love it too. It’s just a bunch of silly fun and corny jokes but all enjoyable.

A bonus

Sometimes, it’s better that I read from a medium completely different from what I usually turn to. So other things I consider when in a reading slump are magazines that match my interest (anything pertaining to literature, psychology, traveling, philosophy, interior designing, and so on).

Other times, listening helps more than reading something, so I turn to audiobooks instead (often for rereads) or listen to a podcast (if it’s a bookish podcast, it will probably trick me into reading because I’ll be curious about whatever book the host discusses).

And there you have it.

Let me know if you’ve read any of these or if you have tips for getting out of a reading slump.

18 thoughts on “Six for Sunday: Books to Get You Out of a Slump

    1. Lol! I’d love a second volume too. Seems like there’s been talks about a second volume, but it’s not definite.
      Apparently, there’s a prelude out called Bad Egg. I saw it mentioned on a Reddit.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I’ve heard so many good things about Saga over the years, so when it was recently offered as part of an Image comics e-bundle I grabbed it. Now I have 9 volumes of it to read. 🙂 I agree with you that comics and middle grade are great ways to take it easy and still read during a slump. As would be finding those simpler, less serious and shorter books, perhaps some novellas or short stories, maybe with a bit of humor, stories that don’t take themselves too seriously.


  2. I really should give MG more reading; one time where my work charge has been particularly busy, I opted to read one as I figured it’d be less heavy on my already roasted brain (I took a thing about jellyfishes) and I gotta say it worked pretty well!

    As i’m bilingual, sometimes I feel like reading in french is the perfect palet cleanser 😅 it takes less out of me to comprehend french, as i’m living it in on a regular basis; only a few things like work & blogging being in english.

    Liked by 1 person

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