Life

Looking for Your Next Great Summer Read? Let These Sites Be Your Guide

Emmy Rossum

Emmy Rossum

Readers are part of a community. Not just those who casually peruse a magazine from time to time or scan a newspaper here and there, but people who like to take in a story, get involved with facts, fiction, history and characters through these things called books. And let's be real — the community isn't huge. If you're like us, you've been disappointed when a much-loved story comes to an end. What will you read next? Who do you turn to? Sure you can ask your friends, but their opinion is going to be based on their interests. How can you find something based on yours? Well, we've got the answers. Turns out there is a handful of sites built to help you get the most out of your reading time. Read on to find out where to go.

Whichbook 

Whichbook gives you an exhaustive list of categories to help you find the perfect book for your mood and any other preference you can think of. A list of conditions that allows you to go from subtle to overt levels of happy, sad, danger and more, like you're moving a light dimmer, lets you pick a feeling. If you'd rather pick a plot structure like revelation or generations, there's that, too. Want to read about a specific type of character or setting? Set your slider and get a list of suggestions. Create lists so you'll always know what's next. You can also peruse pre-made lists from the site or members just like you.

What Should I Read Next? 

So simple and pretty self-explanatory, unlike other sites that can be hard to navigate and force you to set up yet another online profile, you can see results by typing in the title or author of any book you loved. Just click on the link that shows up beneath what you typed to confirm it's the book you're thinking of. You'll be taken to a page that suggests similar books for you to check out.

Shelfari 

Sometimes you want a suggestion fast because you're on your way out of town on vacation and need to stop in the bookstore before you go or you just need a quick download. But then there are other times when you really want to be choosy. That's what this site is for. Powered by Amazon, you get to connect with friends, read others' suggestions and create your ideal virtual library to keep track of what's next. You can also keep track of what you've read in the past, while adding to book profiles and summaries. 

Gnooks 

An awesome search engine, just type in three authors you like to get a suggestion for one you're likely to love. If you're not thrilled, simply click "I don't like it" and you'll get another. Prepare to have your mind blown with the map option. Authors that are closest to the one suggested are the most likely to give you your best reader fix. Oh, and you can use it for music and art, too.

Bookish 

This site is all about the editor-curated list. While an algorithm is in play for recommendations, the stalwart editors also give their two cents on the best books to read in different genres you pick from a drop-down menu. Click on "Mind, Body and Sprit" and get a list for the best nonfiction beach reads. They even have a quarter-life crisis list inspired by none other than Hannah Horvath (the protag of HBO's Girls). 

Lazy Library 

OK, so you're not always looking for a 3,000-page tome, especially if you're just hanging by the pool. This site's one way to get suggestions for books with one important criterion in mind — they're all 200 pages or less. Type in keywords and know you're getting something that packs a punch in a (relatively) short amount of time.

Goodreads

Goodreads is uber popular, in part because of its handy Facebook and Amazon integration that lets you find friends who are existing members, as well as auto-add books you've already purchased for easy record-keeping. You can read thousands of reader reviews of the books you're considering next, create lists and never go another day with no-book-to-read anxiety. Want to be part of a book club? Goodreads has thousands. If you're not into personal suggestions or reviews, you can make your own decisions by simply using the search field on the homepage to look up a book by author, title or ISBN. And if that isn't enough, you can find books based on genres. With various email options, choose to be kept up to date on everything from new reviews your friends post to the latest books by authors you've read.