Gone are the days(well almost..) when people go directly to the library/book store and stare at several book shelves, wondering what good book to read/buy. This post is for people who want to do a bit of research online before going to a bookstore to find a good book to read (whether online or your neighborhood bookstore).
As part of my New Year post, I mentioned to, “read more books”. Rather than, just preaching, I made a commitment publicly, to list a several books I plan to read this year. Yes, my way of making my self-accountable. Anyways, one of my blog readers emailed me and asked how I came up with that list. So I thought answering that in a blog post.
Given below is the process I followed. It is pretty straight forward.
1. Select an area you want to read aboutObviously, you need to have some idea of what you want to read about. Are you looking to read fiction books? Latest detective stories perhaps? Do you want to get ahead in your career ? Any area you want to work on your communication skills? You get the idea; Write a few keywords.
Example from my reading list: A few areas I concentrated on was blogging, personal development, management, personal finance etc
2. Search an online bookstore or search engine for the keywordOnce you have a rough idea about what to read about, visit an online bookstore (I use amazon.com) and then search for the keyword. The search result will give you a list of books. Depending on the results, sort it by either bestselling, relevance etc
Example from my reading list: I searched for blogging, and ProBlogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income was listed as #1, by relevance.
Alternately, you can use the search engine directly.
Example from my reading list: I Googled for “best books on blogging”
• Pick another book by the authors you have enjoyed the most.
• Use Amazon suggestions or other recommendation tools.
o See what "Other people have purchased" section on the website.
o Look up a book you particularly enjoyed and browse through the suggested books for another book to pick to read next.
3. Use a search engine and read a few book reviews for one of the booksNow, you should have a list of books. There may be some titles that immediately catch your eye. If so copy the title, and paste it in a search engine and append book review. See what other people are saying about the book.
Example from my reading list: Search for “Problogger book reviews”
• I would read the amazon review
• Read a first few pages of the books, summary, table of content
Going through all this, made it very clear to me whether it was a book I would want to read, enjoy reading and whether I would benefit from the book.
As you would imagine this would take a fair about of time. I wanted to be fully in control of what I would read. Looking back at it now, I think it was time well spent. Don't waste your time (and money!) randomly selecting books, unless you like surprises!
How do you go about choosing books you want to read? I’d like to hear from you.
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