How Long Would It Take to Read Every Book in the World?

While it’s impossible to say exactly how many books there are in the world, as of 2020 it’s estimated that there are in the neighborhood of 140 million. The average person lives 79 years, which means in order to read every book in the world right now, not even counting the new ones that will be released, you would have to read about 1,772,151 books a year. That means that every single day you would have to read 4,855 books. In reality, very few people are actually interested in reading every single book out there. The truth is, reading takes a lot of time. The average book has about 9,000 words and the average adult reading speed is 200 words per minute. That means it takes 7½ hours to read a book. Reading speed doesn’t matter, though. According to the Pew Research Center, the average adult reads 12 books a year, with half of Americans reading four or less. So, if you want to get yourself into the habit of reading more, you just have to take the first step. The key is to create a reading habit by setting aside time for a consistent reading schedule. You can do this daily or — if you have long working hours or children — you can allocate blocks of time during your weekend. Before bed seems to be a popular time, but any time of the day is good as long as it’s consistent.