It's absurd to think of going to a book group meeting and opining about a book you didn't even read.
More rude: Going to a PhD seminar and participating in the discussion without reading the book first.
And of course, no one wants a surgeon operating on them if she hasn't read the latest journal article on this particular procedure.
It makes no sense to me to vote for a candidate who doesn't care enough to have read (and understood) the history of those that came before.
A first hurdle: Are you aware of what the reading (your reading) must include? What's on the list? The more professional your field, the more likely it is that people know what's on the list.
The reading isn't merely a book, of course. The reading is what we call it when you do the difficult work of learning to think with the best, to stay caught up, to understand.
The reading exposes you to the state of the art. The reading helps you follow a thought-through line of reasoning and agree, or even better, challenge it. The reading takes effort.
If you haven't done the reading, why expect to be treated as a professional?