All in One Gulp: Books that Kept Us Reading!


Rachel Seigel

No matter what your reading habits are like, we’ve all had at least one book that we just couldn’t put down. It’s the book that no matter where you were, or what else you needed to do that day (including sleep), it all went on the back-burner because it was that good that you had to finish it!

All of us at Pubcrawl know about books like that,(and that’s not even counting the ones written by our members) and we thought we’d share some of them with you!

Rachel Seigel: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, J.K. Rowling

Since I have always been the type of reader to devour a book, it was hard to narrow it down to just one. There have been many books that I’ve ended up reading in a single sitting, but one that I particularly remember losing a day to was Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I took the book with me to a park on a beautiful summer afternoon, thinking I’d read outside for a couple of hours. By about 100 pages in, I was so completely engrossed in the book, I hardly noticed that the sun had disappeared behind the trees, and that it had gotten quite chilly out. I was cold, and getting colder by the minute, but I wasn’t going anywhere until I finished that book and found out how it ended!

Susan Dennard: Ashes, Isla J. Dick

Ilsa Bick’s Ashes was a one-sitting read for me. It had everything I like in a book: a really tough heroine, a slow, natural romance, a ton of action, and a fantastic premise. The zombies were SO deliciously terrifying, and Tom–oh Tom! I sat down to read the book right after lunch, thinking I’d just read a few pages… Fast forward to hours later with the sun long gone: I was in the exact same spot on the couch with a hideous need to use the bathroom…that I didn’t even notice until I hit “The End”.

Joanna Volpe: A Midsummer’s Nightmare, Kody Keplinger

She loves Kody Keplinger’s A Midsummer’s Nightmare, and reads it in one sitting every time she picks it up. (And Joanna assures us there’s no professional bias!)

Sarah Jae-Jones: Froi of the Exiles, Melina Marchetta

For me, it’s Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta. This is the sequel to the totally amazing and equally unputdownable Finnikin of the Rock, and is totally complex and intense.

Kat Zhang: A Game of Thrones, George R.R. Martin

So, I read Game of Thrones in one night. Started around 7pm and read until I was finished 😛 To be fair, I might not have slept particularly well that night anyway, but the book definitely keep me enthralled!

Jodi Meadows: If I Stay, Gayle Forman

I started reading it on the car on the way home from the bookstore (I was not driving) and could not be separated from the book for anything!

Marie Lu: Ready Player One, Ernest Cline

When I needed to head out of the house and forgot to bring the book with me, I bought the ebook version too so that I could keep reading in the car. And proceeded to make myself
thoroughly carsick. Totally worth it, though.

Erin Bowman: Lola and the Boy Next Door, Stephanie Perkins

I absolutely devoured Lola and the Boy Next Door. I took it outside one afternoon to read a chapter or two, and hours later I was done. Stephanie Perkins writes such sweet, charming YA contemps. This book left me in a state of giddy happiness.

Julie Eshbaugh: Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins

For me, it was Suzanne Collins’s Mockingjay.  I had just had surgery to repair a badly broken leg and I was not allowed to get off the couch! Fortunately, on the day the book released my husband came home at lunch and picked up my pre-ordered copy at Borders. I started reading that afternoon and went straight through, finishing the next morning. Although it would have been nice to read it more slowly to postpone the inevitable conclusion of the series, I could not stop until I had learned the fate of each of the characters! 🙂

Amie Kaufman: The Book Thief, Markus Zusak

I nearly finished it on my train ride home, and couldn’t bring myself to drive home from the station without getting to the end. So I sat on the platform (in the freezing cold) crying and reading. A lady came along and leaned down to check I was okay, saw the cover, nodded, patted my shoulder, and went on her way. What an amazing book.

Vanessa Di Gregorio: The Thief, Megan Whalen Turner

I first read this book as a teen still living at home with my parents (and 4 brothers!). I remember being SO ENGROSSED (and I was just at the beginning!) that when my Mom called us all for dinner, I ended up bringing the book with me to the dinner table. I ignored my entire family, eating as fast as I could, before running back up to my room with that book still in hand. I kept telling myself, “just ONE more chapter”. At 2 am, my Dad peeked into my room to see me STILL reading and told me to go to sleep – to which I responded, “just one more chapter!” – only to finally put the book down at 4 in the morning. I didn’t even FEEL tired. And it’s not even a long book – but I’m the type of reader who likes to take her time reading.

So these are some of our all-in-one-sitting reads, and now we’d like to hear from you! What books have you read that you finished all in one gulp?

Rachel Seigel is the Children’s/Young Adult Book Buyer at wholesaler S&B Books in Mississauga, Ontario. She also maintains a personal blog at and can be found on Twitter as @rachelnseigel.

29 Responses to All in One Gulp: Books that Kept Us Reading!

  1. Avery Moore Jul 27 2012 at 7:01 am #

    For me, the Harry Potter books. All of them. I remember when I got the first two when I was a little girl, and I read them both so fast! And reread them. Several times. (I think, in total, I read the first book twelve times or so, I kinda lost count.) With every new release, I read the book within 12 hours. Except the last one. I was on vacation and only could get my hands on it in the afternoon, so I was forced to sleep a couple hours at night (worst experience of my life). I still finished it within 24 hours, and since it was the first book I had read in English without reading the Dutch translation first, I was quite proud of myself. :p

    I can get lost in a book really quick though. Some other examples are The Hunger Games, Wicked Lovely, Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini, Divergent, Shadow and Bone, The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson, …

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 8:53 am #

      I love that Harry Potter was your first English-language read! I devoured all of them pretty quickly too, but I especially remember having that experience with the fourth.

      I have GOFT and S&B on my to-read list!

  2. Hwa Sun Jul 27 2012 at 7:26 am #

    The first time I read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, I spent 3 whole days constantly reading (without counting the normal stuff, like eating and sometimes sleeping).

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 8:53 am #

      I know what you mean- I’ve been known to skip eating or sleeping too when I’m in the middle of a book.

  3. Lauren Jul 27 2012 at 7:43 am #

    Of those, I definitely agree with Harry Potter (just…all of them),”If I Stay,” “Lola and the Boy Next Door,” and “Mockingjay.” For “Mockingjay,” my friend and I were marathon reading it at the same time, each from our own houses. So every now and then we’d text and be like “DID YOU GET TO ____ PAGE?!” It made it a fun experience. I’ll also add “Where She Went” and “The Fault in our Stars” to that list.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 8:55 am #

      I love how technology can allow you to share the reading experience with your friends!

  4. Megan Duff Jul 27 2012 at 7:49 am #

    I remember getting up hours early on school days, like 4 am, to read the HARRY POTTER books. In middle school! Not that the books had just came out but I had just gotten into them and, well, when I get into something…

    I just read SHIP BREAKER all in one day on Wednesday, it was very different and engrossing. Also lately I took in SHATTER ME and INCARNATE (hi Jodi!) in one big gulp. Jeez I read really fast, most of the time I don’t realize how abnormal it is…

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 8:55 am #

      Not abnormal at all! I think there are more of us than you think! 🙂

  5. Katherine S Jul 27 2012 at 8:57 am #

    I love to get lost in a book. For me, it was The Forrest of Hands and Teeth, Warriors of Ankh, Incarnate, Divergent and Game of Thrones to name a few.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 6:36 pm #

      I loved Forest of Hands and Teeth, and I stayed up way too late finishing Insurgent- I just couldn’t put it down!

  6. Carla Cullen Jul 27 2012 at 9:26 am #

    For me, it was “Catching Fire.” Our family missed the U.S. release date because we were living in India, but I found it in a bookstore there (a version for the British market, in paperback). I sat down on the couch, intending to save it for my daughgter when she got home from school, but I just stayed there and read it until I finished. Another one I couldn’t stop reading was “The Compound” by S. A. Bodeen.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 6:37 pm #

      Oh yes! Compound was another one I couldn’t put down! Such a creepy read!

  7. Rachael Jul 27 2012 at 10:44 am #

    The only HP book that I distinctly remember reading in one sitting was DEATHLY HALLOWS. Started it at noon the day of release (the soonest I could get my mom to drive me to Borders to pick up my pre-order) and finished it exactly twelve hours later at midnight. The only times I paused were when I was sobbing too hard to see the words.

    I read GONE by Lisa McMann in three or four hours. I curled up on my bed with it and said “I’ll just read a few pages” and a few hours it spit me back out blinking and disoriented. Then there was MOCKINGJAY which I read obsessively the afternoon of its release. INSURGENT was another one. It arrived in the mail and when the truck pulled into our driveway, I ran through the house yelling “IT’S HERE!” and then I curled up in bed and tore through the entire thing in a day.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 6:38 pm #

      I haven’t read the Lisa McMann yet, but I agree with you on the other two! I stayed up very late finishing Insurgent!

  8. Alexa Love Books Jul 27 2012 at 11:41 am #

    I love that feeling. Getting lost in a book for hours without realizing it – and resurfacing to realize a whole day/night/afternoon has passed.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 27 2012 at 6:39 pm #

      Me too- of course it’s a bit discombobulating when I forget to get off the subway or the bus and end up somewhere completely foreign! 😉

  9. Susan Jul 27 2012 at 7:09 pm #

    The first book I ever read cover to cover nonstop was The Thorn Birds. Yep, I’m that old. I remember I started reading that novel on the bus ride home from school. I was the last kid to get dropped off so I was on that bus for almost an hour. By the time I got home, I was hooked. I stayed up half the night but I couldn’t stop.

    I keep hearing that you have to read IQ84 in one sitting. I have that book and it’s a monster. I’m trying to wrangle an empty day to try to read it in one go. It’ll be a real marathon session.

    It’s the best getting caught up in some mysterious alternate universe with all these strange characters that become friends.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 28 2012 at 12:36 pm #

      I totally agree- always the sign of a great book when u get completely drawn into its world!

  10. Sarah S Jul 28 2012 at 11:05 am #

    For me, ON THE JELLICOE ROAD by Melina Marchetta was a could-not-put-down. It wasn’t quite a one-sitting read because I had a choppy start — couldn’t understand what was going on at first. But after the first forty pages or so, I was totally hooked. Part of it was because I wanted to figure out what was going on and how the different parts of the story linked together. But more than that, the characters gradually became so real and their situations were so heartbreakingly tragic that I wanted to get through the end with them and make sure they were ok. At the end, I was seriously in awe of how Marchetta crafted the stories and the characters so perfectly.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 28 2012 at 12:36 pm #

      Melina Marchetta is an awesome writer! I’ve really enjoyed each of the books I’ve read from her!

  11. JQ Trotter Jul 28 2012 at 1:26 pm #

    The first HP book was the first book I ever read cover-to-cover in one sitting when I was just a little kid. When I was around eighteen or nineteen, by uncle bought me the Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire series for Christmas one year and that was the first series that I read book-to-book in less than a month. (Though, I can’t stand the TV show and gave up on the series while reading the last book…)

    But I’m going to have to go buy Ashes, A Midsummer’s Nightmare and The Theif. Good thing I had planned on going to a book store this afternoon.

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 31 2012 at 9:06 am #

      It’s a good thing I get so many of these in ARC form or I’d be totally broke!

  12. Cara M Jul 29 2012 at 5:16 pm #

    I did it with Ready Player One too! And most of the Harry Potters :). I’m also going to count the Doomsday Book, because I read the second half of it in one sitting, and for a six-hundred page book, that took some doing! (Well, it was one of those nights where I had a hard time getting to sleep, and around 1 am I needed something to keep me from a sneaky hate spiral. When I finished it, crying, at 4:30, the night was pretty much shot. But I was out cold in a few minutes!)

  13. Adriana Jul 30 2012 at 10:57 pm #

    THE FAULT IN OUR STARS by John Green. My butt was so sore when I finished that book and I cried and laughed and spazzed but God I loved it <3

    • Rachel Seigel Jul 31 2012 at 9:07 am #

      I loved TFOS as well! I had a hard time putting it down!

  14. Sandy Aug 1 2012 at 3:54 pm #

    All the Harry Potter books definitely keep me glued to the pages, The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima (I got this for Christmas) and read it straight into the sequel The Exiled Queen which I also got for Christmas. The whole Hunger Games Trilogy had me engrossed from the first book to the last one, but that last book that kept me in bed, reading from dawn until dusk was This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers. I thought I was just going to read a couple of chapters and before I knew it I was reading through lunch and done in the afternoon that very same day.

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