Since 1997, you’ve been coming to BarnesandNoble.com to discuss everything from Stephen King to writing to Harry Potter. You’ve made our site more than a place to discover your next book: you’ve made it a community. But like all things internet, BN.com is growing and changing. We've said goodbye to our community message boards—but that doesn’t mean we won’t still be a place for adventurous readers to connect and discover.

Now, you can explore the most exciting new titles (and remember the classics) at the Barnes & Noble Book Blog. Check out conversations with authors like Jeff VanderMeer and Gary Shteyngart at the B&N Review, and browse write-ups of the best in literary fiction. Come to our Facebook page to weigh in on what it means to be a book nerd. Browse digital deals on the NOOK blog, tweet about books with us,or self-publish your latest novella with NOOK Press. And for those of you looking for support for your NOOK, the NOOK Support Forums will still be here.

We will continue to provide you with books that make you turn pages well past midnight, discover new worlds, and reunite with old friends. And we hope that you’ll continue to tell us how you’re doing, what you’re reading, and what books mean to you.

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Wordsmith
maude40
Posts: 357
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Outside of the usual ways of choosing a book--cover, title, author, recommendations--I love to wander Barnes and Noble looking for titles using the alphabet as my guide. I start looking for a title that starts with the letter A. I find a book, buy it, read it and then go back for letter B and so on. I allot a month for each book, as I'm also reading other books at the same time. I don't use the articles, a,an,or the when choosing. So far I have read    A   Abe-Richard Slotkin

                                                 B   Blindness-Jose Saramago

                                                 C   Crow Lake-Mary Lawson

                                                 D   The Dante Club-Matthew Pearl

                                                 E   The Elegant Gathering of White Snows-Kris Radish

These were all excellent reads and it's a fun way to browse a bookstore. Yvonne

 

Wordsmith
Sarah3973
Posts: 403
Registered: ‎09-27-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?


maude40 wrote:

Outside of the usual ways of choosing a book--cover, title, author, recommendations--I love to wander Barnes and Noble looking for titles using the alphabet as my guide. I start looking for a title that starts with the letter A. I find a book, buy it, read it and then go back for letter B and so on. I allot a month for each book, as I'm also reading other books at the same time. I don't use the articles, a,an,or the when choosing. So far I have read    A   Abe-Richard Slotkin

                                                 B   Blindness-Jose Saramago

                                                 C   Crow Lake-Mary Lawson

                                                 D   The Dante Club-Matthew Pearl

                                                 E   The Elegant Gathering of White Snows-Kris Radish

These were all excellent reads and it's a fun way to browse a bookstore. Yvonne

 


Love the alphabet idea!  I'm going to have to give that a try.  Wandering around B&N is already one of my favorite things to do...this will make it even more fun!

Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book. ~Author Unknown
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DiverseSoul
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎10-09-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

There are many things I use to choose a book.  I do look at the Name first of all. Then i look at the cover.  I read the back cover or front flap- and most of the time I am very challenged to find a book that doesnt sound like something i have already read with different characters inserted randomly.  :smileyhappy:

I read a variety of books.  I really like historical fiction.  I do like a good "found an ancient manuscript with a curse and one archeologist must save the world" type of book too.

During "off seasons" i like to mix it up......sorta like in the middle of summer-read a book about Christmas where there is almost always a happy ending guaranteed.  

I do not rely on bookclubs only because what one person may say is a good read....I may not like so well. I do not like the typical outcome of certain authors.  I used to just stick to one author but it seemed every book was starting to sound the same. 

I enjoy wandering aimlessly up and down the aisles of the local library or bookstore to see what jumps off of the shelf at me-straying off into unknown worlds or avenues-you never know what could be lurking around the next corner.

Distinguished Bibliophile
Peppermill
Posts: 6,768
Registered: ‎04-04-2007
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Granta List

 

An article like the above is an example of the information that I use to tease out what authors or books I might be interested to explore next or in the future.   The comments here are as useful to me as the list itself.

"Seize the moments of happiness, love and be loved! That is the only reality in the world, all else is folly. It is the one thing we are interested in here." -- Leo Tolstoy
SF
New User
SF
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎10-25-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Like many of you, I look first at the coverIf the cover doesn't grab me, then I usually just keep walkingThe next step for me is to collect about 4 books looking solely on the cover

I find a nice spot to curl up and then I read the backs of each bookIf I still can't decide (or once I have made a decision) I read the first chapter

If after the first chapter, I want to continue to read, then I know that I have found the right book at the right timeI make note of the other books that caught my eye just in case!

So there you have it!

 

Sarah 

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CutestLilBookworm
Posts: 2
Registered: ‎10-25-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

I choose books based on my preference for certain writers, recommendations from others, and my desire to complete 'reading lists' or series.  I would like to complete reading J.D. Robb's In Death Series and Vince Flynn's Mitch Rapp series.  Also, I pick a book from Sacred Fire's 100 Essential African American Books list...based on what I'm in the mood for reading at the time.  Then I throw in a little horror, usually from King or Koontz--trying to get through all their books as well. As for literary, I'm working on getting through all of Barbara Kingsolver and Wally Lambs books.  

 

 

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Lindsey93
Posts: 61
Registered: ‎11-02-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

For me it is mostly the cover art.  If something strikes my eye and looks interesting, I will pick it up.  But, it also has to do with the author.  If I read something, and really like it, I will look for more books by that author.  I know they say "Don't judge a book by it's cover," but for me it's mostly first impressions.

That rebel moon is shinin' Those stars burn like diamonds
Hell bent on chasin' down that crazy spark
I'll follow you where you're leading
To the first sweet taste of freedom
You got me runnin' baby,
Wild at heart
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Braguine
Posts: 140
Registered: ‎06-20-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Welcome Lindsey :smileyhappy:

 

The cover art will influence me whether I look inside the book or not and read a couple of paragraphs.

 

I have a question for everybody. When browsing for a book online what key words do you use? I'm particularly interested what people use to find a book about spies.

 

Brag

Alexey Braguine, author of Kingmaker
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syd_32_00
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎11-09-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

I always thought you should read the back. Remember, never judge a book by it's cover! :smileyhappy:Flight of the Raven  

 

When I first looked at this book Flight of the Raven by Stephanie S. Tolan, I thought it looked a little hokey, then I read the back. It sounded like a really good book, I read it, now I think it is the best book I've ever read.

Correspondent
momgee
Posts: 584
Registered: ‎07-24-2007
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Spies is a good start! :smileyhappy:  My husband reads a lot of "spy stuff" as I call it. Sometimes I do a search for him as he also likes submarines and naval stories. Subs, military, intrique, undercover, suspense, covert some tags like these will usually produce good results.

 

As for me also, cover art is the grabber. i have found a lot of really enjoyable books  just by the cover in a genre I like. I have only been burnt so to speak once. The cover was gorgeous, the story, or non story as it should have been billed, was awful. The characters could be cousins to Flat Stanley. It was also almost devoid of dialogue and boring boring boring would be the tag for that book and No I am not naming names!

 

 

 

 


Braguine wrote:

Welcome Lindsey :smileyhappy:

 

The cover art will influence me whether I look inside the book or not and read a couple of paragraphs.

 

I have a question for everybody. When browsing for a book online what key words do you use? I'm particularly interested what people use to find a book about spies.

 

Brag


 

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read."
Groucho Marx
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MsMorninglight
Posts: 80
Registered: ‎01-21-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Ha!   love your signature line Momgee! :smileyhappy:

 

There are different things that may draw me to a book: the cover, the author.  But for me to actually choose the book, I read about half of the front flap, back of the book if it's a paper back, or synopsis if online.  If that little bit doesn't grab me right away, then I know the book won't either.   I've gone against my theory a few times, just in case I might be wrong, but it always turns out I was right in the first place.




"Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind." - Henry James
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lilacbouquet
Posts: 104
Registered: ‎11-12-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

[ Edited ]
Well, it's easy for me since I work with books. I see hundreds of books a day, and if one pops out at me with an interesting title or cover, I take a second to peek in the book, and if it sounds interesting, it goes on "the list". Another tip-off is if I see a certain book being purchased frequently. That's usually my cue to research it and see if it looks any good. And of course, just talking to my friends, coworkers, etc to get ideas always helps! I swap books a lot with my friends since we all have different interests but all enjoy reading. It's great. :smileyhappy:
Message Edited by lilacbouquet on 11-25-2008 12:13 PM
- Emily
"The test of literature is, I suppose, whether we ourselves live more intensely for the reading of it." - Elizabeth Drew
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dhaupt
Posts: 11,865
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: How do you choose a book?

[ Edited ]
Hmmm, how do I choose a book well there's several different ways. First by knowing and loving the author's previous works and waiting (un)patiently until the next novel is published. Second and by far the way I get introduced to most of my beloved titles and authors is by logging on to this very site every day and reading about what every body else loves, hates and why.
Message Edited by dhaupt on 12-03-2008 09:36 AM
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janalee40
Posts: 40
Registered: ‎11-19-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

When choosing a book, I usually stick to classic novels that I haven't read yet. If I am in the mood for something more recent, I check the best seller's list, ask a few friends of mine who read on a regular basis, consult book clubs, and then check their reviews online to see what the general public thinks. A lot of people follow Oprah's book club, but not me. I don't have to have a famous person lead me in the right direction. Any intelligent reader can inspire me to read a particular book as long as the recommendation is enticing.
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Braguine
Posts: 140
Registered: ‎06-20-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?


janalee40 wrote:
When choosing a book, I usually stick to classic novels that I haven't read yet. If I am in the mood for something more recent, I check the best seller's list, ask a few friends of mine who read on a regular basis, consult book clubs, and then check their reviews online to see what the general public thinks. A lot of people follow Oprah's book club, but not me. I don't have to have a famous person lead me in the right direction. Any intelligent reader can inspire me to read a particular book as long as the recommendation is enticing.

 

You sound very selective. Way to go! :smileyhappy:
janalee40 wrote:
When choosing a book, I usually stick to classic novels that I haven't read yet. If I am in the mood for something more recent, I check the best seller's list, ask a few friends of mine who read on a regular basis, consult book clubs, and then check their reviews online to see what the general public thinks. A lot of people follow Oprah's book club, but not me. I don't have to have a famous person lead me in the right direction. Any intelligent reader can inspire me to read a particular book as long as the recommendation is enticing.

 

Alexey Braguine, author of Kingmaker
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Purpyl
Posts: 78
Registered: ‎12-06-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

This is an excellent question, & one with more than one answer. I look at the LA Times Book Review every Sunday (the only thing good about the paper, IMHO) & every now & then something just pops out at me. I keep a list of Books to Read on my Treo & add to it often. I may not live long enough to read all the books I'd like, but that is my goal. I know we've all been told not to judge a book by it's cover, but the truth is sometimes the cover grabs me. I find myself attracted to the new paperback format. Larger, thinner. Feels good in my hands.

 

I like certain genres, certainly; but I'm trying to "read outside the box." I jump around. I do stick to certain authors (Stephen King, James Patterson, John Sanford, just to name a few), but am open to just about anyone. I'm trying to slowly go through the classics, as well.

 

I've been wanting to join a Book Club for years where we all get together every few weeks to discuss what we read & then start on another together.

 

So many books, so little time.

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janalee40
Posts: 40
Registered: ‎11-19-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Braguine,

 

I am selective!:smileywink:

 

I think I am kind of obsessive about my selection process because I just can't stand reading an awful book. It's worse than watching a really horrible movie, because you invest so much more time. Are you this way?

 

-Janalee

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Braguine
Posts: 140
Registered: ‎06-20-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Hi Janalee,

 

I try to finish even bad books in the hope of finding some redeeming quality. I have no problem walking off a bad movie.

 

Brag

Alexey Braguine, author of Kingmaker
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writers_fable
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎11-17-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

At first I'll go with an author I'm familiar with. But if I can't find anything by that particular author, then sometimes the title will catch my eye and I'm like...oh what's this?

 

I like fiction for the most part. I have gone into some romance and then to fantasy. I have really only read one romance novel and that was enough. LOL. 

 

For a little while I was a fan of Nicholas Sparks, but lately his writing has gotten a little flat to me. Like he is writing all these stories to hurry and sell it. Like the last book, I want to say was The Choice. Didn't like it at all. All the while I'm thinking "why in the world does this man love this woman?" and it just turned me away from his books. Especially Dear John, oh I did not like it at all. I was disappointed with it. 

 

So, no set author in mind unless they are really good, I try to read different types just to get the feel of what each author has to offer. 

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surferartchick
Posts: 7
Registered: ‎12-19-2008
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Re: How do you choose a book?

Usually I pick up a book because of the jacket design. But I randomly open the book and start reading, if I continue to the next page I'll buy it.  I figure if it keeps me engaged long enough for me to read through a page and a half then it should be good enough to buy.

 

And yes, there are some authors I will buy whatever they put out because I love their style.