Finding Your Next Book (And Unlock Your Inner Bibliophile)

May 4, 2017

I was reminded a couple of weeks ago how enjoyable it is to slow down, get comfortable and take in a good book. It’s funny how something so simple can feel like such a luxury when screen time dominates the daily routine. Our lives — well, at least my life — are deeply intertwined with devices, whether it’s logging hours on the laptop, spending time on social media, browsing the web, reading a digital news subscription, perusing the latest Spotify playlist or binge-watching Grey’s Anatomy on Netflix (guilty!). Oh, and #sports.

Working in marketing makes it even easier to get caught in the web of devices and the online world, and that much more difficult to detangle from it. So, I made a mid-year resolution to create more space every day to disconnect. Life is more vibrant when you find time to settle into the quiet, to learn something new and get lost in another story.

And, contrary to what some may think, my taste in reading material isn’t confined to the Ivory Tower. In the last month, I’ve immersed myself in the parent politics of suburban Australia (“Big Little Lies”), followed Cora along her Whiteheadian journey (“The Underground Railroad”), thought a fair amount about the changes and mainstays in brand positioning strategy over the last 30 years (“Positioning”) and just passed the halfway point in Neil Gaiman’s “American Gods.”

If you’re like me and want to read more, check out the below resources for book recommendations. Share your favorites in the comments section.

Bookstores
There are many great bookstores in the Twin Cities with book clubs, staff recommendations, featured picks, etc. This is by far my favorite way to find a new book. Some of my frequent haunts include:

  • Magers & Quinn
  • Birchbark Books
  • SubText Bookstore (shout out to Mike Keliher’s little bro!)
  • The Elliott Bay Book Company

Writer’s note: The Elliott Bay Book Company is in Seattle, but is hands down one of the best bookstores I’ve ever been into. I’ve been known to spend a significant amount of time in there and lug many books back to Minneapolis.

New York Times Book Section
Not surprisingly, this is a great resource for finding new reading material. Whether you’re looking for fiction, nonfiction, history, bestsellers or more eclectic reads, this has something for everyone.

NPR’s Book Concierge
This book guide lets you use filters to explore recommended titles from NPR staffers and critics. It’s easy to use and the recommendations make it easy to see if a title is up your alley or not.

Instagram
Yes, I know this is a post about getting off social media and disconnecting with a good book, but there are a couple of must-follow Instagram accounts for bibliophiles:

  • @oursharedshelf – Our Shared Shelf is Emma Watson’s feminist book club
  • @bookofthemonthclub – This Instagram feed is a good place to find my next summer beach read
  • @goop – I love to hate Gwyneth Paltrow, but I can’t throw too much shade at Goop. Paltrow’s lifestyle brand and website has a book club and their picks are usually pretty on point.
  • @kaylenralph – Kaylen is the co-founder of The Riveter Magazine and frequently posts about her favorite book of the moment. (Also, if you haven’t picked up a copy of The Riveter, do yourself a favor and snag one immediately.)