by Kristen Abell
So, some of y’all may know by now that I’ve started an online book club on Twitter and GoodReads called #sareads. One of the goals of this little online venture is to help those in student affairs find books to read that provide professional development, spur creativity, or just are just plain awesome to read. I tend to have suggestions somewhat frequently when people ask (okay, I’m a one-woman book-recommending machine – I can’t help it, I lurv reading, people!), so I thought I’d share just a few of the sites I use to find new books to read.
Yeah, yeah, if you’re part of the #sareads book club, you might already be a part of GoodReads, but have you really used it? Take a look around that site, make some friends (a few of you have even friended me – feel free if you haven’t), join some groups. There is no better way to get book recommendations than to find some folks who have similar tastes to you, then follow them. Find out what they’ve been reading and steal those book recommendations – I promise they won’t mind! I find a good portion of my books this way – from a very well cultivated group of people whose taste I love. If you want to step outside your comfort zone, find someone who reads books that are totally different than your usual fare and find the ones they like the most. There’s even a “popular student affairs” shelf on GoodReads – surely you can find something on there?
By dint of being a long-time customer – oh, and by giving them my email – I’m on Barnes and Noble‘s email list, so I get new book recommendations pretty much weekly, but you can go on their site and receive the same recommendations. Amazon is also a good place to look, and if you look at enough books you like, they’ll start giving you recommendations – always helpful, that Amazon. Of course, if you also tend to look at, say, Wonder Woman merchandise, your “recommended” list may look less like a book list and more like you drive an invisible jet.
Check out the website for your local library – even if you’re not much of a library user yourself. Because KC straddles the state line of Missouri and Kansas, I’m fortunate enough to have two local libraries that have excellent websites (KCMO and JOCO). Whether it’s suggestions by the library staff, recommended books for different genres, or just an up-and-coming book club book, they always have great suggestions for books to read. And since I also follow both of them on Facebook, they often will make recommendations to me personally based on my recent favorites. Seriously, y’all, I love libraries so hard.
Finally, follow #sareads on Twitter – in addition to discussing a particular book, we also tend to throw out lots of suggestions and book review blog posts using that hashtag. Go check it out – or tweet me and ask for recommendations – you know I’ll come up with something for you!
What are you reading? Where do you go for new reads?