How Do I Know, What Books To Read?

How Do I Know What Books To Read, Feature image

Love reading but unable to decide what books to read precisely? Well, then this is just the article for you! Reading is fun indeed, but when it comes to choosing a book, it becomes quite a job. I understand that choosing an ideal book from so many options can be tricky, but we have to sort this problem out. Let’s know-how.

As an active reader, I read many books, but sometimes, even I get confused about what I should read next. So, I have figured out a few ways by which I make out what book I am going to read next.

For knowing what books to read, you must first figure out your interest areas and what genres catch your attention the most. Reading reviews about various books might help you make up your mind, and asking for recommendations from constant readers might help clear out any further confusion.

Now, let’s know in detail about the steps most of my reader friends and I follow in choosing an ideal book for reading and would recommend you guys to follow for finding your perfect book. 

Should You Make A Reading List Of The Books Before Reading?

Making a list of books before actually getting into reading them is a good idea. This way, you will have options to choose from it.

 If you have a single book in mind, sometimes it might be the case that you may not find that particular book at the time, so the time you’ll spend finding a specific book can be utilized in reading another one if you have a list ready to go with that.

Making a list seems like an easy job, but it takes some effort and research to get an ideal list of books ready.

A person can make a good list of books for reading by organizing the names of the books in a particular manner like, in ascending/descending order of the year they were published in, according to how they performed after being published, or simply in alphabetical order.

As I stated, making a list is not a simple job. It requires more than just knowing the names of the books. Let’s know more about listing books before reading to help us determine what to read.

Key Steps For Choosing What Books To Read

Now, it’s finally time for me to share my exact steps and procedure of choosing books with you all. It might seem a little difficult and hectic at first, but once you’ve got a hold of it, it’ll start to seem more and more interesting and helpful to you.

1. Know What You Like To Read

person choosing a book

Knowing what you like is an essential aspect of making choices in life, and it goes the same when it comes to choosing books. Knowing what genre you like or find interesting and easy to read is a must.

If you already know what kind of books interest you, then you’re good, but if not, you need to explore. Now, by exploring, I don’t mean reading an entire book of each genre. This might cause you to overwhelm your mind and put you off reading for quite some time.

To know your area of interest, you only need to have a glimpse of what’s inside the book and what that particular niche of book covers.

Once you’re done with exploring, you can move on to the next steps.

2. Make A List Of Books Of Your Favourite Authors

person is writing on a notebook.

Every author has their writing style, and every reader has a particular style they like to read. As a reader, the style I prefer reading might differ from what you, as a reader, might prefer.

As a reader, I also know that we have at least one such author whose books we love to read or whose one specific book has impacted our minds.

Making a list containing the names of such authors we admire and whose works we would love to explore more, along with the names of the books they have written, is an excellent way of scrutinizing books you might want to read next.

Now, after we’re done with naming all the books by some specific authors, we can pick and choose the names of a few books we would want to read first. 

3. Read The Contents Page Of Book

the content written on the book.

Reading the contents page of different books might give us an idea about what the book contains, and then we can decide whether we want to read it or not.

It gives us an idea if that book is what we were looking for. Sometimes, reading a summary of the book might not be enough as it just gives the crucks of the entire book.

The contents page states all the topics covered in the book and gives the reader a clearer view of the book’s inside.

Once you’ve read the book’s contents, you’ll be able to decide more easily whether you want to read that book or not.

4. Look For Reviews Of The Book Online/Offline

person reading newspaper

Relying on reviews for knowing whether the book is worth reading or not is an excellent source for determining what to read. 

Book reviews can be gained online as well as offline.

Online, these reviews are easier to find as they’re easily available. As for offline, you first need to find a trustworthy person who has read the book entirely and is capable of giving an honest review.

It saves the reader’s time and prevents them from committing to a book they weren’t looking for themselves.

5. Look For The Recommendations Of Readers

recommendation word

Asking or looking up for recommendations of various readers might help you with the process of selecting good books for reading.

For seeking recommendations, be careful and aware of the source of information. It sometimes happens that the person recommending you isn’t himself familiar with the book entirely.

If you’re seeking recommendations from a reader you know, make sure he has read the book and if you’re going online to look up recommendations, make sure to cross-check the facts stated.

Recommended books make it easier for one to choose books for reading and also help break down the process of scrutinizing. 

6. Define Your Purpose Of Reading

A girl in white dress reading book.

‘What to read’ is a question that cannot be answered until we know the answer to ‘Why to read’. 

We need to ask ourselves why we are actually reading. Is it for gaining knowledge? Or Is it for some project work? Or maybe simply for gaining pleasure?

Defining our purpose for reading will actually help us choose the types of books we would read next. One would obviously choose the books that will help him/her to fulfill that particular purpose.

Once we have a ‘Why’ in our mind for reading, our approach for choosing books will shift in the way of fulfilling that reason.

7. Look For Top Rated Books

books marked top rated

Talking about books or something else, we would always want to follow the trend and never want to go out of style. What’s top-rated is what’s trending.

I personally have been reading top-rated books, and so far, it seems to be going just great for me. Those are top-rated for a reason. 

Looking up top-rated books of your desired genre and including them in your list of what to read next will save a lot of time and make the process easier for you. 

If a book is top-rated, it would mean that the book is highly recommended by readers all over, and it will save you the time of doing extra research work.

8. Ask Friends And Family

A woman recommending a child to read a book

Whenever we need help with anything, most of us go to our friends or family as we trust them to help us. Shouldn’t it be the same when we need help choosing what books to read?

Reading has become a common hobby these days, and if we ask, our family members and friends might have some suggestions to give.

Asking people around you their opinions on reading and what they prefer reading might help us explore more than one genre and help us make our list even more comprehensive and diverse.

Our friends and family would never suggest anything not worth reading and would be more than happy to help us as they also realize that reading is a healthy habit.

9. Head To Library

A girl choosing a book from library

Where can you find a truckload of books of different genres, authors, and of all the times? In a library! 

You can head to a library and explore more books in the pin-drop silence there. You might find an ocean of books there and a wide range of options to select from.

Surrounding yourself with so many books as there are in a library might give you more thoughts and ideas about what you should read. You can even explore more and more genres in a library.

After selecting some specific books, you can even start reading them immediately if you’re in a library.

10. Watch Movies

couple watching movie in a cinema hall

Watching consumes less time than reading. There are a lot of movies based on different books.

Some people just watch the movies and don’t read the books as they assume that they already know what’s there in the book when this is clearly not the case. Movies are just based on books, but not every incident displayed is accurate and true.

If you’re not sure about reading a particular book, try finding a movie adapted from that book and watch it first. If it interests you, then go read the book as well.

Again, the movie will only give you an overview of the book, and if you like the storyline of the movie, I would highly recommend reading the book as well, to know what actually there is in the book.


Reading books is indeed fun, but it’s even more fun when the book is exactly about what we want to read at the moment. Reading random books might make one lose interest in reading for quite a bit and make the fun reading process seem monotonous and boring. So, organizing a list of books you would like to read and in the sequence of how you would like to read them is an excellent process for keeping you hooked to reading.

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