For as long as I can remember I have loved to read. Some of my happiest memories as a little girl were when my mom and I would read together every night before bed. Everything from Laura Ingalls to Nancy Drew, a love for books and reading has been part of me for as long as I can remember. I consider good books a close friend, rich with memories and meaning.

For bibliophiles like myself, reading is more of a lifestyle than an activity. It seems I am always in one of three stages: reading a book, deciding what book to read next, or calling the library with a list of books I am hoping to find on the shelves. Do you find yourself somewhere in that description?

If you are looking for new ways to freshen up your to-read book pile, one of these podcasts may be what you need to grow deeper as a reader.

LeVar Burton Reads

Most of us remember LeVar from his days as the fun, exciting host from the TV show Reading Rainbow. Think of this podcast as the grown-up version of Reading Rainbow. On LeVar Burton Reads, he narrates a short fiction that he has chosen himself.

The quality and narration are excellent and will captivate you. You will hear stories from new and old authors, featuring a wide variety of perspectives.

What Should I Read Next?

This is perhaps my all-time favorite book podcast. It has a cozy, inviting feel to it. It’s also a source for me to get recommendations for books to read next.

The host is Anne Bogel, the voice behind the popular blog Modern Mrs. Darcy. Anne chats with her guests about their reading lives and how to make time for reading, what formats they prefer, and of course, why they love to read. She also chats with readers about the books they love and hate and then offers them three book suggestions to read next based on their preferences.

Read Aloud Revival

I was introduced to Sarah MacKenzie when I read her first book The Read Aloud Family several years ago. Even though I read it as a single woman, I was struck by the magical power of what happens when parents read aloud to their kids, and how that can help children grow into readers. Since then, I have discovered Read Aloud Revival and have found it to be as enjoyable as her book.

A homeschooling Mom and book lover herself, those are two passions that come through Sarah’s podcast as she explores conversations and has guests on that filter through these two lenses. A recent episode that blew me away was when Sarah had a doctor on to discuss what happens in your child’s brain when you read aloud. The science behind it was fascinating to me.

Borrowed

Borrowed is created and hosted by the Brooklyn Public Library and does things a bit differently. While the show has moved away from discussions on books and interviews, they feature stories sourced from the local community of Brooklyn.

Stories like the history of Black women’s suffrage or why Brooklyn produces so many incredible writers, are just a sampling of the unique flavor you will get from this podcast. While I’m not a resident or native of Brooklyn, I’ve found this podcast to be refreshing and an opportunity to understand a well-known neighborhood more intimately. As you might expect, each episode comes with a curated book list, so you will always leave with some good book recommendations.

Reading Women

Reading Women is a podcast focused on the literary contributions of women. Women’s fiction is featured through monthly themes and author interviews. Listeners will get a lot of exposure to the work of women from diverse backgrounds and experiences, like Indigenous writing or stories about mental health. Reading Women will challenge and stretch you as a reader while offering an open invitation to “reclaim half of the bookshelf.”