Picking the next book


I enjoy reading (you may have already guessed that); however, no matter what your favorite genre, it feels like there is simply too much out there to know what to read next. It’s challenging to pick the next “great thing” to read. I wish there was a secret to it, but when someone asks me “what made you decide to read that?” I usually give one of these three answers:

1. I like who I like!
As I develop a preference for certain authors, I obviously look for any new work from each of them. For me, Dan Pink, Malcom Gladwell, Jon Acuff or Dan Ariely could literally write a book titled, “This is not for Rob” and I would still buy it the day it came out and read it immediately. Not kidding.

Note: Malcom has a new book out recently, Talking to Strangers that might be the best book I’ve ever read. Grab it now…literally.

I’ve added a few to this category in 2019. Specifically Brené Brown (Dare to Lead), Annie Duke (Thinking in Bets) and Simon Sinek (Start with Why). Note: all of these were recommended to me by either an author listed above, or by a friend.

2. I like who others like!
Just as I mentioned above, when I find a book where one or more of those authors have given a testimonial, such as on Grit by Angela Duckworth, or Emotional Agility by Susan David, then I will give that a serious look.

Note: there a few others who I hear about, but within a chapter or two I find that I’m not so interested in finishing their book. I won’t bother you with names/reviews of those.

3. I like who I meet.
Specifically, I like people I hear speak – Kindra Hall, Diana Kander, Michelle Gielan, and Whitney Johnson are all amazing authors I first heard at a conference. After hearing them speak, I read their current books, then went on to learn more.

I heard Kindra Hall speak at a Toastmasters International convention, and recently read her new book, Stories that Stick. I totally loved this book (review coming).

Diana Kander spoke at a Gartner conference a few years back, and now she has an excellent podcast that I listen to every week. Here is my post about Diana.

Michelle Gielan spoke at the 2019 Gartner conference and might be the best author I’ve seen speak. I actually bought the audible of her book, Broadcasting Happiness, before she finished her talk. Then I wrote a review.

Whitney Johnson was also at a Gartner conference, and also has a great podcast. Here is the post I wrote about her after that conference.

So, in not-so-many-words those are some of my favorite authors and some of their recent books I have read. If you have any ideas I’m missing, please make a note in the comments!

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