Rad Reads

The ultimate guide to annotating books for fun

You might sigh at the thought of annotating books (especially for school). But annotating them for fun? *Totally* different. What you've learned in English lit is true—annotating the text will help you understand it better. But it can also help you remember your favorite quotes, passages and more. There is ~no~ right way to annotate a book when you're reading, but we have some suggestions to get you started. (P.S. It's a lot more exciting when it's not for an assignment!)


What you need

Ofc, you can't start annotating books until you have the right supplies for it. All you need are highlighters, Post-it flags, pens or pencils and a good book. It's ideal to have a couple of different colors.


There are *so* many different ways to annotate a book. Some people choose to only highlight in one color, others decide to highlight in multiple colors...and some highlight *and* underline. One way to annotate is by highlighting anything that stands out to you, whether it makes you laugh, cry or feel something else. You can start only using one color to make it simple, then incorporate more as you go.


A rainbow of colors

Maybe one color isn't your thing—that's okay too! If you choose to use multiple colors, one way to do it is by picking a color for each main character. Highlight blue whenever they say something or a sentence is about them. Another way is by choosing a color for a different emotion brought up in you by the text. When using multiple colors, try coordinating the colored flags with the highlighters.

Pro tips

If you like something, highlight it, and if you *really* like something, highlight and underline it! Try writing little notes next to the sentences you highlighted. You can write literally anything that pops into your mind—no matter how big or small.

Need help finding book recommendations to annotate? Check out these posts:
📖 12 books you need to read in 2022
📖 Here's what book to read next...based on your fave Taylor Swift album
📖 We've gathered our *fave* feminist classics for your next read

Check out @glbestiebookclub on Insta for more book posts!

All GIFs via Giphy
Slider image: @stephbohrer


by Kelly Schwint | 2/23/2022