Human beings are social creatures. Except you’re a hermit inclined to reside in the most remote backwater on the globe, you’ll admit that some delicious feeling comes with being in the midst of people like you.

It doesn’t matter if you’re the shyest introvert in the house or the wildest, devil-daring extrovert in the party; it just feels different when you’re around folk like you. It feels like the very beginning of coitus when the male member first nestles snugly into the vagina, and the warmth slowly begins to spread over. In such a period, one wonders why one’s member has to spend half a lifetime inside briefs when there was something much better around.

Finally finding and subsequently fitting in with your crowd feels the same way; you wonder why you’ve had to spend time with people who were so much removed from you in thought, word, and deed.

Who needs reader friends?

To begin with, not every reader feels the overwhelming need for reader friends. Some readers enjoy books occasionally and only discuss the books if and when the topic arises.

Other readers need more, though. For them, discussing books on rare occasions is not enough. They prefer to go out of their way to find fellow readers and go on to have passionate discussions and arguments about plots, their favorite characters, or how shitty an author’s writing was.

There’s a third category of readers- I call them the genuine bibliophiles. This sort is similar to the second category in that they’re keen to find fellow readers to share their bookish thoughts and prejudices with. However, that’s not where it ends. For these bibliophiles, nothing is better than being in a community of readers, perpetually living and breathing books as it were, and enjoying the communion of their fellow book snobs and all who unconsciously look down on anything that is not bookish, or at least deeply intellectual.

And yes, I think that being a book snob is essentially part of what makes you a genuine bibliophile. If you doubt me, it’s fine. I’ll fully address the matter in another piece in the future, as I don’t want to digress too much.

A reader belonging to any of the three categories described above needs reader friends. Although the casual reader might not feel this need as keenly as the second category, you’ll agree that the genuine bibliophiles feel the urge most strongly.

Now that we’ve identified those who need reader friends, let’s get on with some tips on how to make reader friends.

Where Do You Find The Reading Crowd

If you’re looking for readers to befriend, there are more of them around you than you might think. They can seem scarce if you don’t know where to find them, but you’ll finally feel right at home once you do.

Here are their favorite hunting grounds:

Varsity classrooms and campus parks

You’ll find plenty of reader friends in your University class, even if you haven’t realized it yet. However, you’ll have to be a bit observant. Look out for paperbacks sticking out of handbags, and occasionally intrude glance at device screens. This way, you might catch them glancing through ebooks.

Note that I’m not liable for any embarrassment resulting from being a bit sneaky. If you get caught, it’s entirely your fault.

Parks are also a place to find bibliophiles. Here, you needn’t do anything sneaky. You can spot them from half a mile away, overlarge books in hand, and out of touch with their surroundings.

Just make sure the book they’re reading isn’t Netter’s Atlas of Human Anatomy

Instagram

There are fewer surer places to find bibliophiles online than on Instagram. In fact, they have an entire community there to themselves called Bookstagram. On Bookstagram, rich readers come to show off stunning collections in dizzying reels that make you drool.

Don’t be deceived- people with massive physical libraries are rich. Books aren’t cheap, and the value of a fair-sized shelf or two will probably keep you watered and fed for a year and a half. Add a few more shelves to the mix, and you could buy yourself a Ferrari Roma.

Be careful when sliding into DMs, though. Many of them don’t abide unsolicited messages. But, if your profile reflects your bookishness, don’t be surprised to receive overtures yourself.

You’re not the only bibliophile looking to connect with other bibliophiles, after all.

Bookclubs

Book clubs are a tricky issue, not because they may or may not be easy to find but because many so-called book clubs are merely social clubs in disguise.

Trust me; I know all about book clubs. I’ve run one for six years, and I can tell you that after a few years of deep social integration with bookish minds, books will become less than half of what you talk about. You go on excursions and condolence visits and attend weddings and other functions together. Ultimately, they’re no different from your annoying younger brother, whom you love and hate equally.

Nevertheless, book clubs are a good source of bookish friends.

A bit of advice, though- ensure you join the right book club, one whose modus operandi you’re comfortable with.

Goodreads

By far, the best place to not only find genuine bibliophiles but also immerse yourself in a vast bookish network is Goodreads.

I discovered the platform rather late, in 2013. But I can tell you that Goodreads was the beginning of my own bookish cultural immersion. Virtually all of the very first set of book lovers and readers that I subsequently befriended were from Goodreads.

So, if you don’t have an account, do yourself a favor and register. There are many readers on there, and many aren’t averse to receiving DMS or requests for buddy reads. Jump in!

Conclusion

So, there you have it- finding your reader crowd. It’s such a cool thing to be in the company of like-minded readers. They might be from a distant country, but the bond that comes from sharing common bookish interests is unlike anything else.

Therefore, go into the world and do as ye hath been commanded.

Who knows, maybe a bookish marriage and subsequently squalling, bookish babies could yet come out of it!

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