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How to choose a good book to read

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How to choose a good book to read

If you're looking for the next great read, here are a few tips to help you find one that you'll enjoy.
Browsing the local library or a popular bookstore, you come across several interesting titles that might be worth a second look. Picking up the closest one, you scan it quickly, trying to decide if it's worth getting. How do you know if your time will be well spent or if you'll give up halfway through? That's the dilemma faced by avid readers who value the quality of time spent poring over a book.

Book lovers inquire into a number of areas to find a tome they might enjoy. Here are some tips that can point you to some exciting possibilities too:
1. Surf the Web. Subscribe to publishers' newsletters or on-line book lists. Many ezines offer paid or unpaid subscriptions and publish the latest titles or book deals for their readership. Some arrive five days a week while others post monthly. You also can do a Web search to find sites where new or old book titles are posted and reviewed. Evaluators' credentials may be listed too, so you'll have an idea of who is providing the review and whether you are apt to find the commentary meaningful.
2. Read publishers' or writers' magazines. Many advertise prominent new titles or offer reviews of books in print, and you may be able to find titles categorized by genre or author.
3. Keep tabs on your favorite authors. Many post Web sites that list previous, current, and upcoming titles, along with book excerpts or sample chapters. Some even discuss their reasons for writing the book or how they developed some of their characters. Visitors can get a feel for the new work to decide if it's something they want to read.
4. Join or visit a specific genre organization. National or international groups hold conferences, maintain Web sites, and publish ezines with the latest information on specific genres and authors. Science fiction, romance novels, and other types of writing enjoy huge numbers of followers who stay in touch via the organization. Cruise by a favorite genre type for information about upcoming selections.
5. Study a book's front and back covers. The front typically offers a visible lure with a titillating graphic, compelling statistics, or an editor's blurb that will prompt readers to start reading. On the back you may find author information, reviewers' excerpts, and a brief summary of the book's contents. Sometimes sales information is included.
6. Check the table of contents or inside covers. A table of contents may list chapter names unless chapters are only numbered, which many are. The book may be divided further into larger sections that are named to give readers a better idea of the themes developed throughout the book. If the book is a hardback with a paper cover, the inside cover pages may include authorial detail or a plot summary.
  • Don't waste your time and money in making a random selection of reading material unless you like surprises. Spend a few minutes browsing sites, links, and covers to find one that will be worth the effort.
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