Since I discovered Netgalley, I have discovered new authors and genres, helping fuel my reading without getting to that awful point of not knowing what’s next. This had been further enhanced by buying books from a charity shop once a month, normally based purely on what I like the look of. It means, however, that I haven’t struggled to decide what to read.
But I want to make sure I’m experiencing some of the gems, even if they are outside of my chosen genres. Or experiencing the books considered the best in my preferred genre. But how do you set about discovering these books or knowing what your peers and like-minded readers are enjoying? There has to be an easy way, right?
Book lists! Bucket lists, top reads, set books to read before you’re a certain age… You name it, you can find it!
Around a year ago, I discovered a “Top 51 fantasy series” that I have been working my way through. A handful of the series on there I had already read, but it has introduced me to a lot of new authors, the majority of whom I have fallen in love with. It has prompted me to finally read a few that I had on hold for a while. Finding this list inspired my reading by giving me a challenge: working through the entire thing. Besides, it’s a list, and everyone knows I love a good list.
Finding this list inspired me, I keep my eyes out for others. There are hundreds upon hundreds on Goodreads, and the chances are that a lot of them just repeat one another if it is genre based. But there are other book lists I have bookmarked such as the best ones to read before you’re thirty and that sort of thing.
What interests me about this lists are the books that overlap. If a book is featured on a bucket list, then again on a to be read before 30 list, the chances are it is the type of novel that actually holds life lessons. Some of these books (I lie, most of them!) are ones I have never heard of, nor would I pick up if I saw them in a charity shop or library. But seeing it recommended in more than one place makes me feel perhaps I should give it a go.
It’s not always about finding deep and meaningful book lists to keep you inspired. You can create your own! I have a list on my phone of books that catch my eye in a shop, newly released. I’m then getting them from the library or buying them when I have the chance, but again, this is opening up my reading.
I will always find enough to read. My life is books, how can I not? But my reason for these lists are to open myself up to what is out there and genuinely considered good by like-minded readers.
What helps you chose what to read?