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    Thursday, 18 May 2017

    REVEALED: THE SCIENCE BEHIND THE PERFECT SUMMER READ

    At the start of 2017, I set myself some goals. Some of them I've smashed (taking up a weekly exercise class - tick) but others (like reading a new book each month) - not so much...

    Which is actually really annoying because it's the one I wanted to do the most. A big part of the problem is time. I drive to work so there's no chance for reading on my commute and I just can't seem to dedicate my evenings to reading when I'm trying to juggle emails, blog-post writing and photo editing. All whilst trying to maintain some form of social life (but that's another story...)

    The main problem though is trying to find the right kind of book to read. Sometimes I'll pick something I think I'll like but then I just can't seem to get into it...and it turns out that's actually now been backed up by science!

    To celebrate the launch of The Obsession, the latest release from number one best-selling author Nora Roberts, The Little Brown Book company conducted a study to see if there's a difference between the books people think they enjoy and those that actually produce a positive physiological reactions.

    How did they do it?
    So they invited 50 participants down to London and asked each person to read excerpts from a range of genres (including crime thrillers and romance) all whilst their body language, pulse and arousal responses were measured by a psychologist.

    Each participant also completed a five-point questionnaire about how the books made them feel and the results were measured and scrutinised by the expert researchers.

    And the results?
    Well, it turns out the body and the brain do react differently. Books which people report to be really into actually performed worse when it came to the physical emotions they conveyed when reading them.

    Take Fifty Shades for example - despite selling over 100 million copies, it came out bottom in the tests...even a bloody Jamie Oliver cookbook got pulses racing quicker!

    So what exactly is the winning formula?
    Romantic Suspense. This style of book is meant to keep readers interested and immersed with elements of surprise, whilst softening any last feelings of anxiety with moments of passion and romance...which is exactly what The Obsession delivers.

    I've just started reading it and I'm hooked already. The dialogue is snappy, the characters are complex and the story-line has the right balance of tension and intrigued. I had planned to take it on holiday with me but I think I'll be finished by the end of the week! It's in stores now and well worth the read (and that's a scientific fact!)
    * This post was sponsored by the Little Brown Book Group

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