Thursday, October 30, 2008

How Do You Find Your Next Book?

When I'm looking for a new book to read, I usually pull one off my bookshelf. To satisfy my literary appetite, I keep several large bookshelves filled with hundreds of books I haven’t read but am interested in reading. I can always find something appealing to read on that shelf, regardless of my literary mood. I've got classics, contemporary fiction, non-fiction, memoirs, true crime, short story collections, poetry, whatever. This may sound extravagant, but I didn't have to spend a lot to collect these books. Unless it's a collectable, as soon as I finish a book, I'll trade it away for something I haven't read or sell it to my local used bookstore. This way, I've got my own private library filled with books I want to read. How do you find your next book?


trav said...

I actually like Bookmarks magazine. They do a GREAT job of stacking up all of the new releases out there.

I also use LibraryThing ALOT! Tons of info and help there. Lots of good discussions that point out more books to add to the ever growing pile.

My system is to have a fiction and non-fiction going at the same time. So that helps some too, knowing that I have to choose from one side of the fence or the other.

It can be slow going, but it works.

Anna van Gelderen said...

I have a somewhat complicated system :-)
I also have several hundreds of books I have not read, set apart on shelves and categorized into sections: pre-1900 English language fiction, post-1900 British/Irish fiction subdivided by period, post-1900 American/Canadian subdivided by period, fiction in Dutch, translated fiction and a handful of fluffy stuff for when I get the flue. Then there are the science, history, travel and miscellaneous books. Here the ones I have read and the tbr copies are all on the same shelves, but the ones I have read have a small white sticker on their spines.
The trouble is I have kept all the books I have bought over the past 30+ years, even out of date textbooks. My house has three floors and everyone of them is filled with books. So far I have been unable to throw away a single book.
I always have at least one fiction and one non-fiction book going at the same time.
When I have finished a book I browse through my tbr shelves (or the stickerless books when I am looking for non-fiction) until I find the one that seems just right for my mood. In my fiction reading I try to mix periods and countries, so that I don't end up reading nothing but recent British fiction, for instance.

Do I sound like a complete geek?

Anonymous said...

I have a bookcase full of books, but not near as many as you have. I have deadlines to meet with some books - other than that I choose whatever strikes my fancy. I am going to have to look into Bookmarks magazine.

Anonymous said...

I keep a large stack (though not hundreds) of TBRs on hand. Some are ARCs for review and others are personal selections. If an ARC's release date is coming up soon, I'll select that one, but otherwise, I just pull off whatever looks good at that moment.

S. Krishna said...

I'm similar - I'm constantly acquiring new books and getting rid of old ones, so I always have something new on the shelf.

Katherine said...

I use LibraryThing a lot for recommendations. and Amazon UK are also influential in helping me to decide. Altogether, my 'to be read" list is just under 100 books (just got to that point this week!) I don't keep shelves and shelves of unread books like you have (hey, I live in a New York City apartment!), but I do usually have about 5-10 books at hand to read, depending on what my mood is.

mike mitchell said...


Matt said...

I used to buy books just from browsing but it can get time-consuming and disappointing, although sometimes I find some jewels. It does take time and effort to dig through the stacks. Now I rely on bloggers who blog about what they are reading. The chance is, books that are recommended bloggers are closer to my expectation in terms of writing and style. I also check with book-savvy staff of my local bookstores.