How Many Books Does The Average Person Read

How Many Books Does The Average Person Read

How many books do you read in a year? The average person reads twelve. Yup! Not a particularly mind-boggling answer to how many books does the average person read, but an encouraging one nonetheless.

According to a study conducted by Pew Research Center, Americans actually read a lot in a wide range of digital formats.

Traditional book reading as we know it is somewhat in decline as more people are increasingly adopting modern reading methods, which include eBooks and audiobooks.

But even as the average number of books read per year continues to show signs of further decline, print books still surprisingly remain the most popular format with an impressive 65 percent of adults saying they had read a printed book in the year before the Pew Research survey.

Book Reading Formats
Image Source: Pew Research Center

It is evident that traditional hardcover books are nowhere near extinction, mostly because of the unique experience and satisfaction bookworms get when flipping actual pages. This is arguably one of the most satisfying feelings you get when reading not just a book but also other traditional formats like newspapers, journals, and magazines. A feeling technology is not able to provide.

Surveys and research aside, there’s another fun way of finding out how many books an average person reads. According to Lenstore, an average person can actually read 33 books a year and a staggering 55 books for speedy readers who can blast through a passage in 60 seconds – assuming book lengths average out to 90,000 words.

These figures might sound a bit exaggerated but guess what, it is actually possible to hit such milestones. It really is.

When it comes to book reading milestones, Microsoft founder Bill Gates stands out. He once famously said that he reads over 50 books in a year.

Not there yet? No worries! With a little practice, motivation, and help from a good reading tracker app, you can start to set and achieve remarkable milestones.

How Many Books Does the Average Person Read in a Lifetime?

Now, this is where the figures get a bit interesting.

According to a survey conducted for Literary Hub, prolific writer Emily Temple found out that at the age of 25, a super reader, a rockstar bookworm who can comfortably go through 80 books a year, with a long life expectancy will finish somewhere around 4,560-4,880 books before they die.

Not so many bookworms today can lay claim to such a record, but is it achievable? Why not? However, you will definitely need a solid book reading strategy and all the help you can get, and maybe a decent supply of coffee or whatever it is you take to help you stay focussed.

Technically, you can easily calculate approximately how many books you can read in your lifetime and probably work towards trying to achieve that particular goal.

You only need to estimate how long you will live, how quickly you can read, or how many books you can read in a year. If you are an average reader, we already know that you’ll read about 12 books in a year (no surprises there). All you need is a bit of math to find out how many books you will have read by the end of your life.

While these numbers might shock you, and might not seem achievable, they are a good motivator. So, instead of setting super high and unrealistic goals, starting small is far better. And as you hit each yearly target, celebrate and set another one.

This is the kind of habit that will remarkably improve your reading and experience.

How Many Books Should You Read in a Year?

The most obvious answer to “how many books should you read in a year” would be 12 since it’s research-based. But who likes putting people in boxes? We don’t! So we’ll just say that you should read as many books in a year as you feel comfortable with. 

Plus, it all depends on the kind of reader you are. Your reading speed is one of the key determinants. Some bookworms are speed readers while others are slow. Some like to take their time reading a book.

They analyze. They question. They take notes. They take numerous breaks as they read. All these affect their reading speed and, in turn, how many books they can read in a year.

While some people can comfortably get through two books in a month, some might barely manage one. Reading is a demanding task. It requires less distraction, time, and a healthy dose of discipline to work.

If you have been actively reading for a while, you should be able to ascertain just how many books you should read in a year. The goal is to remain consistent and work towards improving your annual book count.

Want to start reading more?
Try Basmo book tracker today!

Basmo can easily help you set and reach your reading early goals. It’s super easy to use and 100% free to download, so what have you got to lose?

Download on the App Store
Get it on Google Play

How Many Books Does a Successful Person Read?

Reading taught Tesla’s Elon Musk to build a rocket. This shows you the power of reading. According to his brother, Elon grew up reading two books a day. He’s probably too busy now to keep up with this number but it’s evident that reading was and probably still is a phenomenal part of Elon’s success. 

Reading, as mentioned at the beginning of this article, is a popular and mentally enriching habit that has been taken up by the world’s most successful people. Due to the nature of their work, reading exposes them to an infinite range of ideas, which helps them analyze situations better as well as make informed decisions that affect their lives and businesses.

Take Mark Cuban, for instance, the American billionaire entrepreneur, television personality, media proprietor, and investor. He reads for up to three hours a day. Where does he find the time? We don’t know — but we’ll ask him next time we meet him.

Berkshire Hathaway CEO, Warren Buffet, once said in an interview that he reads over 500 pages in a day. According to Warren, he reads and thinks. This is a habit that has enabled him to make fewer impulse decisions than most people in business.

So, you see, reading can make you rich, smart, and emotionally intelligent. To excel at it, you just need the right strategy and drive.

In case you’re interested, we have an article with a list of books that successful people read.

How Do I Track How Many Books I Read?

You are probably feeling inspired and motivated to up your reading game, which is understandable. However, a set number of books in a year, for instance, is not a walk in the park.

As much as you want to immerse yourself in reading to enrich your mind and become smart and probably even rich, reading books without some sort of a plan will not enhance the experience. In fact, it might discourage you from reading more.

To ensure that this doesn’t happen to you, it is highly recommended that you track the books you read. Why? Because by tracking how many books you read, you will be able to improve your reading skills significantly.

Tracking how many books you read can also help you set meaningful reading goals. This will help you enhance your reading speed as well as help you to easily remember books you’ve read in the past – something most bookworms struggle with till today.

You can keep track of the books you read through simple methods such as keeping a reading journal where you manually record in a notebook each book you’ve read. You can also use spreadsheets to keep a digital record of all the books you’ve read and the ones you are planning to read in the near future.

While all these methods can work, the modern way to track the books you’ve read is to delegate this all-important task to technology using a reading tracker app like Basmo. 

The Basmo app will help you to conveniently track your reading time, journal your emotions and save exciting book and story ideas.

Plus, it’s super easy to track the books you’ve read with Basmo:

  1. Go to the My Books tab on your Basmo home screen.
  2. Scroll down to Book Collections and tap View all collections.
  3. Tap + Create book collection to add a new collection.
  4. You can name it anything you want and start adding books to it.

That’s it! By keeping tabs on everything you read, you will be able to beat Bill Gates’ reading habits in no time!


While reading is mostly about gaining knowledge and insights, the number of books you can read in a given period of time also matters. If you are just starting out, asking yourself how many books does the average person read is a good start. 

The answer will help you identify your capabilities and also help you to set your first reading milestone. And in order to make the experience memorable and exciting, you should also throw in a reading tracker app, you know, to spice things up and make your reading fun.

Ready to take your reading game to the next level?
Try Basmo book tracker today!

It’s 100% free to download, so what have you got to lose?

Download on the App Store
Get it on Google Play

Book vector created by pikisuperstar –

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