You’ve just finished a book.. you’re experiencing either a book hangover and don’t want to start a new book yet or you are immediately excited and ready for a new read. “What should I read next then?” pops in mind. I myself, often have an ASAP tbr stack ready to choose from or just already have a specific book in mind. But still, more often than you think, I end up having trouble making a final decision. Even though I was thinking about a specific book, or have a whole stack lying there to be read, I end up restless and indecisive.
Sometimes I just start a new book immediately, but most of the time I’m being extremely indecisive haha. My huge ass amount of tbr books don’t help with this struggle. Choosing between like 200 unread physical books and a huge amount of e-books makes a lot of readers indecisive I guess, right? Lol. I can’t imagine I’m the only one having trouble with choosing a new read, right? I’d love to hear your experience with this bookish struggle. Do you experience this struggle yourself or do you normally have no problem with picking up a new read?
Translated Article © Melissasbookworld. First time published on September 18th 2016.
Hope you’re going to like the article this time around as well! Happy reading!
TIPS & TRICKS
There are some tips & tricks available when it comes to choosing a new book, when you’re having trouble with it. There are several tricks that could help you if you’re unable to choose for yourself and are frustrated by it when you’re standing in front of your shelves and just don’t know what to do haha.
ASK A FELLOW READER TO RECOMMEND A BOOK FROM YOUR TBR
Getting each other enthusiastic and ‘in the mood’ for a specific read is a good trick. You don’t know what to choose? Ask someone else.. Show them your TBR stack and wait for the enthusiastic or maybe less enthusiastic – so you know what to avoid for now haha – responses, that hopefully make choosing easier for you. Let them persuade you to pick a specific book. I myself, LOVE recommending books to other readers and grab every chance I can to fangirl about my favorite reads and make others read them as well haha. My blog, among others, is a perfect ‘tool’ for me to do that as well. As I said, I love recommending – and fangirling about – books to others and I can be a pitbull when it comes to that as well haha. I hold on until my mission’s accomplished; MAKING YOU READ THAT PHENOMENAL BOOK! Aside from reaching out to someone in person, you could also look for reviews on Goodreads and blog-sites for books that are on your tbr. Most bloggers write non-spoiler reviews so that way you don’t have to be scared to read spoilers about the book, but you Do get some more insight and ‘feels’ about the concerned book. It’s just a great extra aside from reading the synopsis of a book, I think. Especially if you’re familiar with specific bloggers you know who have the same taste in books as you do, it’s a great option to have at hand; reading their reviews. This could be just the final push you needed to pick up that book. So yeah, use your fellow readers/bloggers and let them help you to make a choice!
Bonus; when you’re finished with the book and let’s say you loved it, you can fangirl all about it with the person who recommended it to you, so it’s a win-win! And it’s so much fun talking books with someone so I really like this option!
VISIT BOOK PLATFORMS LIKE GOODREADS!
On sites as Goodreads you get recommendations in every genre and they’re specifically linked to your read books and such so it matches your taste in books, which is so awesome I think. And aside from the linked recommendations it’s just a perfect platform to explore new genres and find new books because their database is HUGE. When I start prowling there, I’m immediately ‘lost’ in all the books haha. It’s book-heaven! For me Goodreads is really dangerous at the same time as well, because I always find so much new stuff I want to buy/read. But forgetting the side-effect of adding even more to your tbr, Goodreads is an awesome platform to use when you want to know more about some books on your tbr. A lot of readers write reviews on Goodreads, so you can read those as well. You see the ratings of a book, and so on.
And you could also use the so called generators. Websites where you can fill in favorite books, favorite genres etc. and the site automatically lines up a list of recommendations to you that match your taste in books. It’s fun, easy and quick! Start up google and type in ‘what should I read next’ and you get multiple sites you can use immediately.
NARROW YOUR CHOICE AND GO FOR A SPECIFIC GENRE
Make several stacks, divided in genre, and choose from there. Narrow your choice.. Sometimes I want to read a fantasy but my mind just isn’t ‘in the right place’ you know? Even though I really want to read a fantasy, my mind just isn’t in the mood for reading a book with a complex story-line and a complex world building, so that’s when I decide to choose something else. Maybe a new adult/contemporary romance for example. And narrowing down to a specific genre has made your choice a bit easier now. From there on you could choose by reading a first page/chapter from each book for example and see what matches you best at the moment.
When you eventually drive yourself crazy after having 10 books passing your hands and you still don’t know what to read?! Choose a ‘safe’ book. A book within a genre that’s Always something you can pick up and read. Do re-reads for example. For you it could be Harry Potter, even though you already read it like 20 times and always gets you out of a reading slump. Or maybe it’s choosing a lighter read, like a chick-lit you can easily loose yourself in. It’s different for every reader, but most readers Do have a specific book/genre they could Always pick up at any time. For me it’s new adult/contemporary romance for example. I can always pick up a read within those genres, regardless of my ‘mood’ – unless I’m in a big fat reading slump, then there’s only 1 option for me: re-reading the infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare haha. But normally, when I just don’t know what to choose and I’m frustrating myself beyond repairs, it’s always a new adult/contemporary romance book I end up with.
GO ANYTHING BUT SAFE
Choose a book that’s been on your shelves for ages, a book you’re still doubting about, if you should read it or not. But you did buy it, though.. So Be Brave and start a book like this from your shelves and let yourself be surprised. Maybe. So.. go outside your comfort zone! I want to do this more often, because I keep clinging to my favorite genres for example, but I want to be surprised with something ‘new’, you know? And choosing a book like this could be just the thing you need then! So I DARE YOU to choose a book that’s been on your shelves for ages and ages.. pick it up and read it asap. Hopefully you’ll get surprised in the best way possible!
BECOME A MEMBER OF A BOOK-CLUB
Within the Dutch book community, book clubs have been rising up in the past year or so, divided throughout the country. The idea is to meet up together like once a month or so and talk about a chosen book you’ve all read during the month. This can be very motivating for a lot of readers, because it’s 1. a lot of fun to hang out with other readers and talk books and 2. you all decide which book to read next together which solves the ‘I don’t know what to read next’ problem as well.
For me, having the ‘pressure’ of reading that particular book isn’t always a good thing, so I don’t know if being a member of a book-club is the way to go for me. But normally I always see positive responses from readers who are a member of such clubs. Being a book-club member is for a lot of readers a win-win then; problem solving regarding choosing a new read and spending time with other readers and discussing books!
the TBR has become really popular, really fast due to the fact that bookish items have become really popular and TBR jars are popping up more and more as well. I got a tbr jar from my Secret Santa last year, but unfortunately haven’t had the time/energy yet to fill the jar up. I’ve made a start recently and are adamant to finish my project. The TBR jar is a really helpful way of choosing a new read, especially if you’re not afraid of being surprised. You stick your hand in the jar, pick a folded paper – or whatever forms you use to fold your title papers with – and pick the book from your shelves that’s written on the paper you picked. And then you start reading, simple as that!
Since I’m a mood-reader, the tbr jar isn’t a very good option for me. It could be, I need to draw like 10 papers from the jar before I end up with one that feels right to start with at that moment. But I love having the jar on my shelves, even if it mostly is for decoration. But again, it’s really personal. What might help me, might not help you and vice versa. So I say; give it a try and find out how it works out for you!
Let others make the decision for you, again haha.. Make a list of 5 books for example and throw it as a poll ‘out there’ and whichever book gets the most votes, WINS and is chosen to be read! I love polls and use them myself for my Cover Crush articles, in which my blog readers can vote for the subject of the next article. I’m definitely planning on using polls for choosing a new read as well in the future.
MY WAY OF ‘CHOOSING’
I say choosing but well.. It isn’t really that buwhaha. I don’t have any particular way of choosing to be honest. The way I pick a new book is mostly random and I can’t really tell what I base my choice on when it comes to picking a new read. At any time there are multiple books that are on a AsAp TBR stack, books I want to read all at once if I was able to do that. In the end I often end up with a new release, a book I’ve been looking forward to read for months. But it could also be a book that’s been on my shelves for months and months, a book I’ve never gotten around to reading yet, which suddenly got my attention and got me aching for it.
I often literally stand in front of my shelves for half an hour at least, snuffling through my shelves and to see if there’s a book that gets my attention right away. I grab a couple of books from the shelves, different genres and such, flip through them a bit and read the synopsis again and/or the first page/chapter and see if it attracts me at that moment. If not, I’ll keep on prowling. Or maybe I end up with a favorite book of mine and I let myself fall right back into that world with me just standing in front of the shelves and a book in hand, and so I end up re-reading a favorite. Anyway… In the end I always end up with a book that’s chosen without any logic buwhaha, do you recognize this behavior?
Then there are often Arc’s waiting to be read as well. I try to give them priority but I really don’t like reading under pressure so if I don’t feel like reading it yet, I put it aside just as fast as I would with a book I bought myself. Don’t get me wrong, I only accept arc’s I’m really excited about and WANT TO READ, but it just happens sometimes that my mind ends up in the gutter somewhere and it doesn’t feel like ‘the right time’ to start it, so I’ll wait just a bit longer then. I’d rather write a review for a book I read while I was ‘in the mood’ than reading a book I have to ‘push’ myself to read when I’m not in the right mood yet. I don’t want it to mess with my review, so I’m very careful with that and try to prevent that from happening. Thank god I’ve got a fairly quick reading pace so I can get a lot of reading done in a month and my mood swings normally don’t mess up too much of my planning and such.
But yeah, ‘choosing’ a new book is dependent on a LOT of factors with me. How’s my mood; do I feel like I’m in need of a romance read? Fantasy with a complex world building and story-line? Sci-fi? Or do I switch things up and just let my ‘eyes’ search for me and look for books that look appealing and convince me to read them with their cover and synopsis? It’s just really random with me, but one thing’s always the same; I only start a book I really want to read at that specific moment. It can happen that I end up putting it aside for a while because I’m having trouble concentrating due to factors outside of reading, but I only start a book when I’m in the mood for it and don’t push myself to read any book in particular, ARC’s or not..
Do you have a ritual when it comes to choosing a new read? Or do you just go by feel and see what you end up with, let it be a surprise?
Love to hear from you!