10 Ways You Can Instantly Tell Someone Is A Reader

by Julia Seales

Book-lovers are some of the best people ever. They’re loyal (after all, they always stick up for their favorite characters), they’re patient (especially the ones who like big books), and they’re even more empathetic. The only problem is, how are you supposed to make tons of friends who love reading as much as you do, if they’re all hidden away with their books? That's why you need to zero in on some clues that someone is a reader.

Never fear: you can find bookworms without even having an in-depth conversation to determine whether they’re bookworms. Maybe you think that it’s impossible to tell if someone likes reading or not without asking them point blank, but actually, spotting fellow bookworms isn’t too difficult. You probably also make it obvious that you love to read, without even realizing you’re doing it.

Think of your favorite characters who also love reading. Did they have to stand in a library and yell, “I love reading!” for you to realize that they shared your favorite hobby? Of course not — you could just tell that they were also as passionate about the printed word (or audiobooks or ebooks) as you are. Here are some of the telltale signs that a person is a total bookworm to help you find the next members of your bookclub.

1. You Encounter Them Somewhere Book-Related

The obvious way to decide if someone is a bookworm is to find them somewhere book-related. If a person hates reading, they probably won't wander through the aisles of a bookstore or library. But if they're standing among the books, inhaling deeply (because every book-lover knows the scent of books is the best scent ever), you've found your bookworm.

2. They're Wearing Literary Clothing

Is this person wearing a t-shirt with a quote from a book? Or perhaps a literary character? Are they carrying a tote bag that says "I <3 Mr. Darcy?" They're probably a reader.

3. They're Actually Dressed As A Book Character

Of course, some readers just go all out. If you see someone actually dressed as a book character, or in an outfit definitely inspired by someone from fiction, you can probably guess where they took their fashion inspiration: books.

4. They Mention Book Characters Often

First you're having a normal conversation, and then they mention something about Holden Caulfield. Bonus points if they talk about the character as if he or she is a real person.

5. They Get Excited About Receiving A Book As A Gift

I once heard someone say that receiving a book as a gift was like receiving a chore. This person was not a reader, and they did not like their book present. True bookworms will always love getting books as presents, because they know it's the best thing you can give someone.

6. If Someone Likes To Read, They Automatically Like That Person More

If you're a bookworm and you hear someone say they love to read, you probably feel a natural affinity with this person. So if you notice that someone is close with other readers, they're probably a fan of books themselves.

7. They Own An eReader Or Use Other Reading Apps

People who hate reading probably don't have a kindle, or the Nook app, or a Goodreads account. Bookworms, on the other hand, will jump at the chance to use technology to consume more books.

8. They Pick Up On Hidden Literary References

Did they laugh at the joke you made about 1984 ? Did they pick up on your obscure literary reference to Northanger Abbey ? This person, be they gentleman or lady, probably has pleasure in a good novel.

9. They Quote Literature

If you love books, you probably can't help quoting from them. Often. I have quotes scribbled everywhere — I hang them on my walls, I write them in notebooks, and I say them all the time. You can usually tell a book-lover by the amount of quotes they sprinkle into a conversation.

10. They're Holding A Book

The easiest way to tell if someone loves reading? They're actively holding a book (and reading it.)

Image: Focus Features (1), Giphy (10)