How Long Would It Take You To Read War & Peace?

Apparently, with some sustained and concerted effort and a lot of black coffee, I could do it in 13 hours, 45 minutes. “”You read 712 words per minute. That makes you 185% faster than the national average.”

ereader test
Source: Staples eReader Department

Sustaining it is the problem. I think I read faster than the average bear, but the problem with reading anything at that pace, for longer than a short stint, is that my brain starts to wander. It begins to rummage through the closets of recorded memory, to play in the fields of imagination, to wave like a recalcitrant child at the opposite end of the grocery aisle and refuse to focus on the page in front of my eyes.

I’ve never read War and Peace, but it would have to be fascinating from cover to cover for me to read it at that pace – unlike Anna Karenina, with its alternating between Anna’s scandalous affair and Levin’s stodgy righteousness. I started to say that the book would also have to be “smaller and lighter,” or my arm and page turning hand would need a break, but I suppose my nook eReader would remove that barrier.

Anyway, the test is very quick – give it a try and see how you do. I’d love to know – leave a comment, if you don’t mind sharing results, but don’t feel you have to. I was rather surprised by mine, because I was sure that a snail could crawl across my desk faster, some days, than I could read an article in People Magazine or a blog post. I think sometimes we slow down because our brains rebel and scream, “Why are you making me read this crap?” – not because they’re not nimble.


Holly Jahangiri is the author of Trockle; A Puppy, Not a Guppy; Innocents & Demons; and A New Leaf for Lyle. You can find her books on Amazon at For more information on her children's books, please visit
Please share this post!

1 thought on “How Long Would It Take You To Read War & Peace?”

  1. I already closed the window. I think I scored 103% and could read War and Peace in 19+ hours. I have read that book before. It took me 4 weeks as I sloughed through the lengthy book while I was in high school. Alas, I still haven’t read Anna Karerina. I tried to last summer but didn’t get very far.

    Either I’m a slower reader now don’t enjoy reading on the computer, or something. I finish most books from 3 to 5 hours depending on how serious the book is and how long. I did read Gone With the Wind in an evening, a day, and a morning.

    Fun quiz! Thanks.

Comments are closed.