FAQ: Read Like the Wind

Photo: Jan van Eyck/Wikipedia

What is Read Like the Wind?
It is a newsletter that I started in 2018 and sent from Mailchimp for a year before moving over to the umbrella of New York Magazine and Vulture.

For years I’d been reviewing books professionally (meaning for money), but I rarely found my own favorite books through reviews. Instead, I found them through individuals whose taste intrigued me: some of whom I knew, some of whom I trailed online. A newsletter seemed like a venue for distributing enthusiasm without market constraints. It meant I could recommend both new and old books instead of just new ones. (Which is helpful because I don’t know anyone who selects reading material on the basis of release date.)

More important, since the newsletter was an opt-in thing instead of a broadcast thing (like, say, Twitter), I didn’t have to pitch my voice to the lowest common denominator of normalcy or scrutability. Which makes for much better recommendations.

Ultimately, books are still the best mobile devices. As useful as the internet is, and social media and all of that, a book can do things that other things can’t. A book forces you to stop multitasking. A book offers the chance to escape the present while providing an encounter that will ultimately enhance your experience of it. Reading is a uniquely pleasurable survival skill.

Two things have changed now that New York is stewarding the newsletter: It is copyedited and I don’t have to spend my own money to send it.

I read books, too. Can I recommend a book to you?
Yes. My email is molly.young@nymag.com

I work in publishing. Can I send you a book?
Sure, if you want, but it doesn’t mean I will read it or like it!

What does RIYL mean?
It means “Recommended If You Like” and is intended as a filter for you to determine which books you might enjoy.

Why are there purchase links to both indie bookstores and Amazon?
To give you a choice. Indie bookstores are institutions that offer invaluable camaraderie and discovery in a physical space. These precious places have to be actively defended, and buying books is a deadly simple way to do it! That said, many people find it convenient to order on Amazon, or don’t live near a bookstore or library, so we include an Amazon link as well.

Where do you get books?
In one of three ways:
1. Because I write about books for this magazine, publishers send me lots of free books. Sometimes they are good. Often they are not.
2. I get them at the library.
3. I buy them.

How do I subscribe?
By clicking here.


FAQ: Read Like the Wind