On Your Bookmark: Summer Book Bingo Starts Today

Twitter image -- cartoon character holding a Book Bingo cardGrab a stack of books, a friend and start reading — Seattle’s favorite summer reading contest is on! The Seattle Public Library and Seattle Arts & Lectures just launched this year’s Summer Book Bingo, which encourages people to read for pleasure and to talk about books with friends, coworkers and neighbors.

Need a refresher? Book Bingo encourages you to read (or listen to) books from a wide variety of categories and to keep track of what you’ve read on your Book Bingo card. Read five books to complete a row on your card for bingo or read 25 books to complete all the squares for blackout.

Book Bingo 2023, card designed by Monyee ChauGet started by downloading your Book Bingo card, designed by artist Monyee Chau, at www.spl.org/BookBingo or www.lectures.org/book-bingo; This year, we are excited to share that we also have a “Loteria de Lectura” card in Spanish. Based on the classic Mexican game Loteria, this card was designed by artist Esmeralda Vasquez. You can download the card and find books lists at www.spl.org/Loteria. (Find out more about the artists on this page.)

Loteria de Lectura card, designed by Esmerelda Vasquez

Book Bingo and Lotería cards are also available at any Library location.

Each square on the Book Bingo card presents a reading challenge in a certain category, including “Chosen by the Cover,” “BIPOC or LGBTQIA+ Horror,” and “Joyful.” New categories this year include “Hip Hop” (to honor the 50th anniversary of the music genre), “Includes a Recipe,” “Workers’ Rights” and “Read with a Friend.”

Remember: Any type of reading counts, including audiobooks and young adult books.

Misha Stone, a Reader Services librarian, notes that Book Bingo is as much about connection as it is about reading: “I love how often we hear from readers who said they loved doing Book Bingo with someone else — Book Bingo proves that you don’t have to read alone!”

A few comments from Book Bingo players in recent years highlight what Seattle readers get out of playing:

  • “In a year of dashed hopes and uncertain travel or reunions, I got to escape. Falling into stories bigger, deeper, sillier, more romantic, or ghastlier than my every day proved life-giving.”
  • “Book Bingo always manages to open my eyes to new authors, genres and topics, and as a fanatical reader, that is saying something!”
  • “Because of Book Bingo, I started a book club, made nine forever friends and experienced books I would have never read!”

Will you find new authors, genres and forever friends this summer? You’ll never know unless you get your card and start filling in your squares.

P.S.: How to find Book Bingo books: Librarians have prepared reading lists for many bingo squares, available at spl.org/BookBingo. For more recommendations, check displays and talk with librarians at your library, find staff picks and book lists at spl.org, request a personalized book list at spl.org/YourNext5 or email/chat with us at www.spl.org/Ask.

Social media is another great way to find reads connect with other bingo players. Follow the hashtag #BookBingoNW2023 on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

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