This last year, 2012, I made a goal for myself to read more and watch TV less. It's always easier to read more in the summer when there isn't much on TV to entice you. I also bought an Ipad, which made it great for having the Kindle app to download books. So throughout the year, I learned tips and tricks on my own to find more books that are great to read, based on the books I have already read and enjoyed.
So, for all you New Years Resolution type of people that have a goal of reading more... I hope these tips help you out quite a bit.
1. If you don't already have a kindle or an ipad or the kindle app on your phone... I would seriously recommend it. If you are a big reader, you will save lots of money this way and coming by books is definitely easier.
2. Amazon is your best friend! If you don't already have one, you need to start your own Amazon account. You only need to give your credit card when you are purchasing something. You can buy used books for less then half the price of a new one. You can download books to your kindle or you can get an audio version of the book. Its such a great resource!
3. I'm going to take you through Amazon step by step on finding just the right book that fits your style... First go to Amazon and Search by books. Type in the last book that you read that you really enjoyed; I'm using Matched by Ally Condie as an example.
Example (if you can't see it very good, just click on the image):
4. Now click on your book you just read and "loved"(mine is Matched). It will come up with pricing and description, etc... The important part we are looking for, you'll need to scroll down to get. Past the Book Description, it will say Frequently Bought Together. Amazon will automatically link you to the trilogy if you didn't already know your book was one. If you've read all three already then right after that it will say, Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought, this is where you can scroll from left or right to see all the books that people have purchased that are similar to your book. (You can use this for any style of book that you have read. The recommendations will always match up to the book that you are searching)
Here is an example of what you should see:
5. From here, it should be easy to choose your next book of choice. Some things to look for... How many customer reviews? If the book has less then 100 reviews you should question the rating. Not a lot of people have read that book to give a good opinion. Next you want to look at the star rating. I tend to choose books that have at least 4 1/2 stars. You'll most likely enjoy that book.
6. As just an example, from the list of recommended books, the one that stood out to me the most was The Book Thief. I clicked on the book and it gives me all the options of buying the book. What I'm really looking for is some reviews of the book to make my final decision on whether or not I want it. The best way to do that is to click on customer reviews next to the star ratings...
7. After clicking on the customer reviews you'll see at the very top: The most helpful favorable review versus The most helpful critical review. By reading both, it will give you a good perspective on whether or not you would enjoy reading the book.
8. If you like The Book Thief but aren't sure if you're in the mood for reading it right now, you can always save it to your wish list for later. This is a great resource for remembering books that you want to read and can come back to them later. Especially if you saw more than one book you wanted to read from the recommended list of books.
9. Amazon keeps track of the things you buy and will give you Recommendations for future things you would like according to what you have already purchased. So, in other words, the more books you buy on there, the more it will recommend other books to you by what you are reading. Example:
10. My last tip, pay attention to Price. If you are downloading a kindle book, it shouldn't cost you anymore then $9.99. If a book seems too pricey but its one you just can't seem to pass up, add it to your Wish List for later. Most times books (even Kindle books) go on sale. The Author can have a sell and knock off a big chunk of the price. Another tip of advice... check out Indie Authors. There are some really good ones out there and their books cost 1/3 of the price of an Author who has been published. If you are an experience reader with good advice about a book, leave a review! It will help us novice readers out there pick a good book and it also helps the Authors get more readers!
Please leave a comment of any advice you may have or experienced while choosing a book.