Posted October 7, 2013 by in Awesome Books

Finding That Next Great Book

It’s a nice autumn evening. You’re curled up on your couch with a mug of hot cider in one hand and a great book in the other. The only problem you have now is that you are on the last page and have no idea what you want to read next. This book was great, one in a million, left you full of satisfying emotion, and you want the next book to leave you feeling the same way. If you’re like most avid readers around the world, when your fingers aren’t flipping through book pages, they are helping you search your way around the internet. If you don’t have another book lined up and ready to go, the digital world is a great place to hunt for one.

One of the best places to start finding that next great book is Google: try a quick search for book recommendations. If you’re lucky, you won’t have read all of the top 100 books that have been classics for decades. If you have advanced past those typical recommendations, though, you may be lucky enough to be directed towards blogs where other avid readers are discussing new and upcoming books. You are bound to get countless suggestions that you may never have found if you only spoke to family and friends about books they may have read. Recently I’ve started finding my books by searching phrases like “top books to read in your twenties” or “best books to read fresh out of college,” as those are my demographics. Use your age, your gender, location or any life chapters you might be on. You’d be surprised at the number of lists that have already been made specifically for people like you. I also like to browse sites like 101 Books, Bookslut and Katie’s Blog just to see what others are talking about!

If you aren’t a huge fan of trusting strangers to find that next gem and are an avid social media buff, you can search through groups and common interest posts for your next read. Perhaps you follow your favorite author on Twitter. Check his or her page to see if they have anything new coming out, or perhaps they just read something they loved that might be interesting for you. Nicholas Sparks has been my favorite author since I was a teenager, and I’m always finding out about his new books via Twitter. He Tweets what he is writing about and which books are being made into movies too!

4474421855_4b20643258Maybe your friend invited you to a group on Facebook that acts as a book club, reviews and discussions of recently read books. See what you find, browse through some comments, and pick something that sounds good for you. In fact, if you are a member of Pinterest, they have a special search called Book Club which allows other members to pin covers of great books that they have recently read. I like to search Pinterest boards for themes like “Books to read this summer” or “Romance novels.” Shelfari is a social media site where you can connect with others who  love books; it’s there for people to share and discover their current or new favorite books.

While some of you won’t like recommendations from strangers who don’t know your style, I’m sure there are also some of you who don’t like recommendations from anyone. You want to find the diamond in the rough, the hidden treasure that no one you know has read yet. You want to be the one up to date with interesting reads and be the one handing out the recommendations. Perhaps the path for you, then, is to search your local library or the Kindle store if you have a digital reading device. Each has a plethora of books, some popular, some no one has ever heard of. If you have the time, you can sit and search for hours, reading the back of book covers and hunting for that one description that really piques your interest.

Try searching for general ideas that have held your attention in the past; for example, if you really enjoyed a book about an experience at a drug rehab center, consider searching for “Novels about addiction.” Amazon is also a great place to find books that have similar stories to those you’ve already read and enjoyed. Filedby is another great resource for finding books!

Finding the next great book is not just a lucky break; for most of us, it takes careful consideration. You can’t trust just anyone based on their experience with a particular book. Not everyone has the same taste. Sometimes you are in the mood for a certain type of book that they have never read. To find a new, exciting read, sometimes you have to step out of your comfort zone. You have to open a new box. In the digital age of social media, there are a million boxes out there that you didn’t even know existed. If you start tearing through the packaging tape, you will, without a doubt, be able to find that next great book.

Image credit: Chris- Shutterhacks

Courtney Gordner