DH got me a kindle for Christmas as I'll be going downtown on the train for work more and more this year. I feel like this is a strange question but how do you decide what books to read?
For some context, I used to read a lot before kids and when I used to take the train. But that was about 8 years ago. Since then, I haven't found the time to pick up many books and I have no idea what sort of books I even like anymore. I already use the Libby app for anything I have read but there are just too many choices. Any suggestions on how one would even start the process?
Seems like a such a silly question so I appreciate any suggestions you may have.
pea / 21 posts
Pre baby I used to read a lot! When I would run out of books to read I would use Goodreads to help me figure out what to read next. I'd also look up books I like on Amazon and see what the recommendations would be.
What type of books do/did you like?
pear / 1622 posts
I have gotten great recommendations from book threads on Hellobee. I know there hasn’t been one recently but you can look at some of the ones that occurred over recent years.
I also look at recommendations from NY Times, Laura Tremaine, book clubs like Oprah’s, Reese’s, Jenna Bush.
What genre of books do you like?
apricot / 420 posts
If you have Amazon prime you can get one free Amazon First Reads kindle book download every month. Might be a good way to explore some new genres?
pomegranate / 3272 posts
@azbaby: @autumnleaves: This is the problem....I don't know what I like anymore! And I recognize the absurdity of my request to ask for help in figuring out what I like so that's why my first question was how do you look for books? Thank you for your answers. That helps! I know in the past I used to like some light hearted beach reads and some pseudo murder mysteries. I think I'd still like a few of those sprinkled in but now I think I would also like some books that are educational on social events? I'm all over the place!
@JMOM: Thanks! The one small issue is that the prime account is tied to DH's account and I think only the primary member gets that perk. But maybe I'm wrong. That's how it was a long time ago when we tried and TBH, haven't tried since.
apricot / 420 posts
@Mommy Finger: Interesting. I can have the download delivered to any place I choose - I always send it to my kindle but it automatically tries to send it somewhere else. But, I'm one of the least tech savvy people you can meet so don't take my word for it.
Can you download books through your library? Great way to check out books for free.
pomegranate / 3595 posts
@Mommy Finger: I love Libby and do the vast majority of my reading through there! One way to browse is to sort by popularity and kind of see if anything new sparks your interest. I use theholds list and tags if there is a lot of interest. You can also filter the popular list by “available now” to see what you could try right this minute.
I also listen to the Nerdette podcast and she does a book of the month with two related episodes. I have really liked her selections this year. I also get ideas by looking at “best books of the year” lists like there are a ton of this time of year.
I also tend to read something I like and then look for other things by the same author.
Some of my favorite books I read this year are Great Circle by Maggie Shipstead, Oona out of Order by Margarita Mortimore, and The Invisible Life of Addie La Rue by VE Schwab.
For light hearted beach reads I do like Elin Hilderbrand. Liane Moriarty also writes good quick reads but a little more depth or JoJo Moyes. For mysteries I like the Maisie Dobbs series by Jacqueline Winspear.
Just a few thoughts in case any of those are a starting point—have fun!
nectarine / 2240 posts
I struggle with this too! I usually go to “Available Now” in Libby and then sort by popularity, and then just try anything that sounds remotely good ha. Then if I like a specific author I request others by them.
persimmon / 1483 posts
This might sound dumb, but I think you just have to start trying books that sound interesting to see what you like now. There are some afternoon chats on the website Go Fug Yourself about what people are reading now that always have *tons* of suggestions. Here is the most recent one: https://www.gofugyourself.com/your-afternoon-chat-what-are-you-reading-11-10-2021
Book recommendations are so tricky. I heard really great things about the book Olive Kitteridge, but I couldn't read much of it and found it depressing.
nectarine / 2010 posts
Earlier this year I made it my goal to get back to reading. I realized that since my daughter was born in December 2014 I had only read about 10 books just for pleasure. (I mean parenting books are useful and all but aren't exactly fun reading.) I just finished my 46th book of the year, and will be starting another tonight. Putting a focus on reading has helped me cut back on tv and mindless screen time and gets me to bed earlier.
I started by browsing the "best of" categories on goodreads. I looked at the past 10ish years, picked categories I was interested in, and added any that sounded at all interesting to an excel list. I've just been working my way through the list based on what's available at my library. I typically put holds on my books ahead of time, but if I am browsing in person I always look at the display with recommendations from the people that work at the library - it's always a good assortment of books. I do a mix of actual books and kindle books from the library. Also, I found that picking some quick, easy reads in the beginning helped me get back into reading.
cantaloupe / 6085 posts
I definitely follow reading list threads on here, on my local moms group, etc and then go read the blurb and if it sounds interesting, put it on hold at the library. (I also keep my kindle in airplane mode when I have a bunch of library downloads - keeps popular library books from expiring if you don’t get them done in time!)
Another thing I’ve found helpful in addition to reading everything by an author once I like a book is to check out something like the Instagram feed for the author - often you can see what they are reading and give that a try.
At my current age (40), I enjoy fluff as well as more poignant books but can’t go too depressing or dark. Also don’t be afraid to quit a book if you’re just not into it, or skip to the end! I love library books for that, no guilt.
pomelo / 5563 posts
Sometimes I just go to the bookstore and look at covers, which I know goes against the whole “don’t judge a book etc” thing. NPR does a great thing every year called the Book Concierge.
cherry / 246 posts
I have found Goodreads Choice Awards to be really reliable picks. I'd start there to figure out what you like. If you go to older years you're more likely to find something available now at the library.
pomegranate / 3272 posts
Stupid question about GoodReads, is that just a place to keep track of books that you have read and ones that you want to read. And it also gives you suggestions on what to read next based on your ratings and such? I was just looking at that on my kindle last night and wasn't sure how I should be using it. Clearly I'm a bit behind the times!!!
persimmon / 1479 posts
I also really like book podcasts to give me some ideas! Sarah's bookshelves live is my favorite (especially the book preview episodes she does). She also has a b log: https://www.sarahsbookshelves.com/
And don't be afraid to quit books if they're not working!! You will find something that connected with you eventually!!
pomelo / 5563 posts
@Mommy Finger: Yes, and it tells you what your friends are reading. But every year they do a best-of vote in about 20 different categories which is a good jumping off point if you know you want, like, non-fiction or Sci-fi.