As someone who is on an overdrive reading books this year (more than 28 already in the first 9 months of the year), i do get asked as to How do you choose a book to read? Or, what kind of books do i read and why do i read the books that i read. These are the few loose set of rules that i follow while selecting a book to read.
It has to be non-fiction. Fiction is a big no-no to me. I cant bring myself to waste time reading fiction. If at all i want to read fiction, i would rather watch a movie that is made on that book. Saves me considerable time considering the fact that iam a slow reader.
Biographies are an instant pick up for me. Doesnt matter the background of the author or the person the book is based on. I have read biographies of Warren Buffett, Lance Amstrong, Louis Gerstner, Andre Agassi, Steve Jobs, Hillary Clinton, Michael Dell, Jack Welch, Kishore Biyani, Richard Branson etc.
Books on finance, investing, stock markets, management, science etc are also my favourites.
Book recommendations in magazines or by successful people like CEOs or other management people who have read books and recommend the same.
Random search on google or amazon after i have read a particular author and liked their writing.
Listening to audio books is my favorite method of reading. Earlier, audio books had someone reading out in a droning voice which could put you to sleep as soon as the books started. Today professional readers pour emotions into their reading with perfect voice modulation which makes listening to a book very much interesting. Sometimes its the author who himself / herself reads out the book. Sometimes its a professional reader and these have made listening to audio books much interesting.
Earlier i used to complain that i had no time to read books till someone nailed it as excuses. I spend at least 2 hours daily commuting to and from work. Mostly the time is spent looking around or listening to some inane radio DJ railing about some crap in between the same songs that you have been hearing for years now. Not to mention the ads that keep popping in between the songs.
I started with one audio book first. It was a bit difficult concentrating on listening to the book. 2-3 books later, you learn to control your mind and concentrate on listening to the book. Honestly today, i hate wasting time listening to songs or radio. I put on an audio book even when i go jogging or ironing clothes at home.
List of books that i have read are here
Above picture courtesy: ArabDetroit