How else can you refer to an audience, beside as audience, when you mean people who are reading a book?

I have thought of:





To clarify: I want words that refer to the audience of a text - doesn't have to be a book per se. So, in this sentence it would be "The simile makes the _ feel happy" where _ is replaced with audience, readers, us, etc..

  • Target comes to mind
    – mplungjan
    Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 7:41
  • Synonym for audience might be public. Sometimes readers are classified according to their level of expertise into two groups: general public and expert public, but here the word public isn't a synonym for audience; it is used for a part of the population.
    – Lucky
    Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 9:19

3 Answers 3


With regard to books, the traditional way is to refer to "the reader" (singular). This means the typical reader. Sometimes this phrasing is even used within a book (especially in a Preface) to avoid saying you. "the reader should note that...." Likewise "the author" is sometimes used to avoid saying I or we.


An audience can be people watching a performance. The noun audience can describe all the people watching a performance, or the part of the general public interested in a specific type of information or entertainment.

  • people who are reading a book can be called an audience or simply readers.

Also, readership is when the audience is reached by written communications (books or magazines or newspapers etc.)


You can think of lector which is a word you are looking for.

Meaning: Lector is a person who reads aloud. The word I am suggesting is specific to book audience which is you are looking for (not exactly).

For others who are asking for dictionary I had referred, I had searched on google for specific need. But for your shack of knowledge:

Oxford dictionary :

A reader, especially someone who reads lessons in a church service.

  • 1
    Did you look up the word lector in a dictionary? If so, and you (bizarrely) still think it's an appropriate answer, then please copy/paste the applicable dictionary definition into your answer here (with attribution to the specific dictionary you used, of course), so that OP and everyone else knows why you're suggesting it.
    – Dan Bron
    Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 10:57
  • This is a terrible answer. Good answers explain why a word is a good choice, using facts and not opinions. Commented Apr 20, 2015 at 12:42

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