Book Thought – Making the Right Choice

I honestly have hundreds of books on my TBR (to be read) list.  I am currently reading my way through Oprah’s Book Club list, 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die, the continuously updated Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers list, plus all of the books I own and have been recommended to read.

My list keeps growing, and I like it that way, although sometimes I do get anxious that I will never be able to finish.

So on to the important question: How do you decide what book to read next?

Right now, I have a bunch of books that I brought with me to Denver, plus I have borrowed books to read on my e-reader from the public library.  In addition, I  have a large chunk of e-reader books that were purchased, a book from an author who would like me to complete a review, and a new friend who has given me a book to read.  I also discovered the library area at my apartment complex, which, while it only contains about 75 books, currently holds about 10 on my list.

I don’t have any sort of method that I personally use, except to choose books that “feel right” or “speak to me” at that time.

What method do you use in order to decide what book to read next?  Or do you not have a method, but just pick up whatever is convenient?

Thanks for reading,



28 thoughts on “Book Thought – Making the Right Choice

  1. I think the best system is to read books written by people you know first. Oh wait, that would mean reading my book The Good Fight, weird. I also rarely keep lists of what I want to read, I usually go with where my mood goes…


    • Do you sometimes have a “learning” book and a “pleasure” book that you are reading at the same time? For instance, I’m reading a Stephen King book right now, which is pleasure, but also a nonfiction book at the same time.


  2. I first read this post earlier today and I’ve been thinking about your question. Hmm. After all of that thinking I still don’t really have an answer!

    Library books usually take precedence for me because they have to go back to the library at some point 😉 But other than that I make my choices on a willy nilly system of whatever I’m in the mood for! Very scientific.


    • But once you have those library books how do you choose the one to read first? 🙂

      It sounds like most people have the same thought with choosing a book, whatever is picked! Whatever you’re in the mood for, whatever speaks to you, it’s all a matter of choosing based on intuition almost.


  3. I don’t really have a method, and this is one of the hardest decisions I have to make on a regular basis. Haha! I just grab my printed list and pick one that sounds good at the time.


  4. If I have a deadline, I try to read those first. If not, I have a bad habit of starting books and putting them aside if they’re not what I’m in the mood for at that moment.


    • There’s nothing wrong with that! I actually had a Book Thought on not finishing recently, too! 🙂

      And in general, I think deadlines make me want to read a book even less! I will do it, but I prefer to read when I want to and how much I want to. Gosh, I sound like a brat!


      • I tend to finish most things I start, even if I have to come back to it months later. If I think there’s a chance I might like it, but am just not in the mood for it right now, I’ll just keep it on my currently reading shelf (which is why there are 5 books there right now) and eventually get back to it.


  5. I have a list of books to read by authors I enjoy. The list isn’t in any order. When I finish a book, I decide what type of book to read based on the theme, “am I in the mood for a new spy, espinage type book, murder mystery, comedy etc. Then I just pick one and start. However, there are certain books that build on each other like the Vince Flynn or Daniel Silva books. In those cases, when I feel like reading one, I work off a book list usually from the author’s website so I read them in order and check them off my list.


  6. I have a crazy and wildly complex system of rules. It goes something like…I alternate between fiction and non – fiction, every other non – fiction involves American Revolutionary War Period. every other fiction book is from an author that I read before. The rules go on and on. But then I rarely follow these rules! I tend to follow the rules! I actually follow a rough proximity of them…sometimes!


    • You’re one of the few commenters who actually has “rules” to follow! But I like the idea of switching between fiction and nonfiction. I try to read as much nonfiction as I can fit in, but it’s not on a particular subject, just more of what I am interested in.

      Good luck with your almost-sometimes followed rules!


  7. I’m ashamed to admit that I have quite the library of TBRs. Actually, more books lining my shelves are TBR because I tend to trade books that I’ve enjoyed but didn’t love. I’m not one for lists, but I recently signed up for the Classics Club challenge to add more classics to my reading diet, and my mother-in-law gave me the 1001 Books to Read Before You Die last year for Christmas. I used it to choose those that I wanted to read for the Classics Club. I’ll say that I’m really guilty picking up new releases over older novels. I generally shoot for those that I’ve seen reviewed on blogs and those that are featured in indie newsletters. Great discussion question! I’m currently speeding through my list to complete the RIP VII Challenge. Sometimes all those books can make you feel overwhelming!


    • Beth,

      I am planning in signing up for the Classics Club this week and have been working my way through “1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die” (which is literally right in front of me now) and totally also plan to use it to make my classics list! Kill 2 birds with 1 stone!

      I have hundreds of TBRs so don’t feel bad! We will get through as many as we can because our lists keep growing!

      But I think that starting my Classics Club list will be a good way to help choose which book to read, although I know I’ll fluctuate between classic and modern novel!

      Thanks for reading and commenting! 🙂


  8. I have almost 80 books on my to-read list! Thanks for the ideas/approaches in the comments section 🙂
    I’m currently reading books that were referenced in books I’ve already finished – so I can understand the story of the book I’ve read better. Then I guess the books thereafter I will read the books whose kindle samples I like, there on i would have to do a lucky draw 🙂


    • That’s a great strategy! I have read a few books recently (since July) that have mentioned Tess of D’Ubervilles. The book is high on my list to read, so that I can understand the other references. But no one mentioned that idea, and it’s a really great one!

      I guess I’ll have to move Tess up even higher on my list now with your suggestion!

      My dad is big on the Kindle samples, too. I haven’t tried that yet. Do they just give you the first few chapters?


      • Yes, they give you the first few chapters so you can get a feel for the book. I have bought 2 or 3 books based on the fact that I liked the samples – those are my next books to read after I read my referenced books.

        I actually like that feature since I wasn’t too pleased with The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova and i purchased it based on recommendations….


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