When picking books I try not to read what others do but, its actually hard to do so. So I got to know what I like and there are many different kinds of books out there.
So, how do you pick your books. I know that many will have authors send them books to review. Some will get the newest books that have come out within the week.
I select based on what looks interesting to me at any given time. If I'm doing a themed reading challenge (ie. horror, fantasy, sci-fi) then I'll pick books that fit into those themes. I don't particularly care when a book was released, and I'm actually more prone to choosing older releases. I write my blog because it's a great way to connect with other people who love books, and because it's nice to have a record of what I've read and what I thought about it. I'm not in it for free books, and most of what I read comes from browsing bookstores/the library. I am influenced a bit in my choices by other book bloggers who have similar taste in books as my own.
I honestly read almost exclusively the books that are sent to my by authors. When it comes to which book to pick up next however, I try to go with whatever I'm in the mood for, or a genre I haven't read in a while. It's nice to keep a good mix going if possible.
It depends on if I want to review books or if I want to read for pleasure. If I want to read for pleasure, I just go to a library and start picking things off the shelf. Especially graphic novels. I just pick out ten of those since I rip through those books in like matter or hours. Then when I get the YA section, I check out authors that I know. Or pretty covers that I made a notice of. For instance, Wither by Lauren DeStefano, has a gorgeous cover, an interesting genre, and an interesting blurb. So I picked it up. Sometimes, I pick up the popular titles or popular authors. Just to see if they are as good as a lot of people say they are. Like the Shiver author. Wasn't as good as I thought she would be. Andrea Cremer def was better than I thought.
When I want to review a book, then I have to think about who is sending me book review request. I go through those and see if any are peeking my interest. Then I go to Library Thing and Good Reads to see if any author is offering up their book to get reviewed. If none interest me there, then my last stop would be here to see if any author's book is interesting.
Lol, that's my long process. :) Usually, if I'm stuck for which books I want, I go on barnes and noble to see what is current in my fav genre, YA.
Anyway, I hoped that helped.
I confess that it's all about my mood when I choose a book to read. Since I also read a lot of non-fiction most of my moods are covered. lol The age of the book doesn't bother me because if I just found the title, then it's 'new' to me. The few books that I have reviewed were purchased. That's because I don't promise reviews--they are a reaction to what I've just read.
I select my books depending on my mood. I also have my list of favorite authors I keep reading from. I am pretty open to most genres so I find myself reading from Sci Fi books to Erotica.
Even when I reading to review I choose something I know I am going to enjoy or at least something I am going to be able to recommend. I have yet to find a book I didn't like.
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It's a combination of if i'm on a schedule (library books need to be returned, reviews I wanna squeeze out by a certain date, eGalleys whose licenses expire, etc), what i'm in the mood for, and what's been released recently (because if it's something I've been eagerly awaiting, it could easily turn into a case of: Oh, was I in the middle of that book? Darn. Oh, well, reading this one now! :D)
I don't choose the books I read.
I live on the east coast of Taiwan, far away from any English bookstores or libraries (the closest bookstore is in Taipei... a 3 hour train ride away). The bare minimum of English books make their way to my corner of the world. I literally read whatever is given to me (and the odd shipment from back home). I have been forced to read some read stinkers and more Penguin Classics than anyone should be allowed to read but I've also been surprised by books that I would have never otherwise read. This has been my unique circumstance for almost ten years.
It's kind of a nice social experiment, having no control over your book choices. Makes you appreciate choice when you have it.
I love reading and reviewing picture books for kids. I try to pick books that are fun, interesting and colorfully illustrated. When it comes to reading for my own personal pleasure i love a good detective or mystery book. I browse Amazon and Half Price book store.
When I'm writing or trying to start a new project I read horror (Stephen King, Dean Koontz, John Saul, Clive Barker, Robert McCammon, and sometimes even the some of the classics).
To pick which one I want, I read the back cover of the book then the first page. If it captures my attention, I'll read it.
When I'm in between projects, I'll venture into other authors (old and new), but they really need to capture my interest quickly.
I am an eclectic reader, so I pick a mix of genres. Whether I'm looking at work from an indie author or a "mainstream" author, I do my homework before I pick a book to try to make the best choice possible.
A lot of how you decide to pick books depends on your blog/web site and its purpose. What's going to be right for one of us probably won't be for another of us. Set up the guidelines for the kind of reviewer you're going to be and let that help guide you in picking books.
For me the biggest issue is that there are just so many wonderful books out there and I'd love to be able to read them all!
There are huge amount of new books that come out every week. How would you choose if you could.
My favorite genre is mystery/suspense. I write in that genre and, for the most part, I read in that genre. I have favorite authors and I always read their new releases. If I'm choosing a book at random, I look at title, cover design, author bio and the brief synopsis on the back of the book or on the dust jacket. If I like all of that, I read a couple of paragraphs on the first page to see whether or not the author's style appeals to me.