I want to recommend the book I've been reading lately. Well, not so much reading as browsing, which I've discovered is the only way for me to get any reading done right now. It's More Book Lust by Nancy Pearl. She is a librarian, and must be a great one, because this, her second book, is a collection of her recommended reading, complete with descriptions and groupings that make sense. I read her first (just Book Lust, of course) a year or two ago, and got some great titles from her.
I don't know about you, but I get a little overwhelmed in the library/bookstore/Amazon if I head in there cold, with no titles to get me started. I often find something good, but tend to go with the sure thing, rather than a risk of my own. So, the next Elizabeth Berg novel, rather than the intriguing looking paperback on the 3 for 2 table at Borders, because what if it's really bad? Though I am much more free with my reading choices now than I was when I was teaching or in grad school, I still have to be choosy, due to my limited down time and self imposed book budget. The library is even worse, what with the alphabetical sorting and very little marketing going on there. But Nancy Pearl seems to have solved that issue, and as we seem to have some similarities in reading tastes, I now have a good list going to add to my Amazon wish list. (By the way, anyone else having issues with the Amazon website as they are "remodeling"? Seems very slow to me, and shut down Internet Explorer twice for me last night)
Better yet, I have also discovered a website that is helping me deal with another of my book dilemmas. There are some books which I really don't need to own, and as I mentioned, I've tried to budget my book purchases a little more in the last couple of years, and make more use of the library. O. really likes to play with the pretend cupcakes and dinosaurs in the children's area, so we're there every week or so anyway. But, every system I've tried to keep track of titles I want to read has fallen through. I even dedicated a little book to it, as well as trying to keep track of what I read. I never had the book with me though, and didn't need the extra weight in the giant purse, so I had it on various old calendar pages or to do lists, also never around when I needed them. Then I stumbled upon Good Reads, a website that allows you to type in titles -- they have most everything I've tried -- and shelve them in categories, from "currently reading" to "to read" to "couldn't get through it." It's supposed to be a networking site, where you review books and share info with other readers, but so far, I'm just using it for myself. I entered a whole pile of "to reads" yesterday. We'll see how it goes...Maybe in a couple of years I can actually read a whole novel in less than a month, and I'll have need for the list!