Avid readers who struggle to make decisions—or are facing a reading block—have a friend in Book of the Month.
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Once upon a time—like, elementary school—I consistently read 100 books a year. Fast forward a decade and a half or so and I was still reading a lot, though much less than my school-aged self did—and then the pandemic hit. Somehow, when I had nothing but time to read, I couldn't bring myself to open a book. Instead of flying through the stack of novels next to my bed, I watched all the best shows on Netflix that caught my eye. Even staring blankly at the wall seemed preferable to reading.

I know I'm not the only one struck by a pandemic-induced book block, but as everyone I knew (or so it seemed) read book after book, I knew I needed to do something to snap myself out of my book rut. That's when I decided to try Book of the Month.

This subscription-based book club has been around since 1926 and is known for predicting some of the top books of the year. Every month, it picks five new books for its readers; subscribers can go online or onto the app to pick which of the books they want to receive in the mail and Book of the Month sends them out (with free shipping, no less). The standard membership lets users pick one book each month, but you can add up to two more if any catch your eye and even skip a month—and not get charged—if your to-read stack is too long or nothing sounds good.

Book of the Month costs $15 per month for one book (though new members can get their first book for $10). Adding a second book onto your monthly order is just another $10. Because Book of the Month sends hardbacks, it's less expensive than buying a brand new book (about $25) every month—and again, shipping straight to your door is included in the cost.

Book of the Month review - gift card
Credit: bookofthemonth.com

Book of the Month, from $15 per month; bookofthemonth.com

Breaking out of my reading rut wasn't easy, but Book of the Month made it feel a lot more doable. First, it let me pick a trending book that I'm interested in reading, and by bringing it straight to my door, it was a contact-free method of getting a fresh read. Second, it encouraged me to read the book within the month so I could get the next book and read that immediately. Third, the price is hard to beat—it's easier to fit book-buying into my budget when it's so affordable, and now that I'm in the habit of ordering a Book of the Month box (and skipping it when nothing calls to me), I'm going to do my best to continue it. Essentially, it makes reading easy—and when reading feels harder than ever for me right now, that's valuable.

If you know someone in a book rut, you can gift them a Book of the Month subscription for as low as $50, which delivers three months of fresh reads. And if you want to gift yourself a membership, it's just $10 to get started and super easy to set up.