4. Discuss the book with others and read reviews.
Discussing books with others can help you read more, and can also help you remember more. Being part of a book club or reading group, whether online or in real life, is a great way to do this. But you don’t even need an official group or a club.
“Discuss the book with others” can sound like a cheesy group learning method that you’d read in a college textbook. However, it’s really a great way to reinforce what you’re reading.
If you can’t find anyone to talk with about the book, just look on Amazon. Chances are, people are already arguing about it. You can chime in with your own review. It will help you to interact with others and share your viewpoint. As people read your review, they can vote on whether or not it was helpful to them, or they can leave kind (or not-so-kind) feedback. Amazon is not the only place to do this. Barnes and Noble, Christian bookstores, Audible, and other book retailers all offer a place to post your review, and some allow for further interaction like with Amazon (Did I mention Goodreads? ).
5. Highlight and take notes.
As long as you own the book, any white space in the book is yours to write on. Talk back to the author, or start an argument with her in the white space at the end if the chapter. This is fun, plus it helps you remember the material.
Electronic reading tools like Kindle allow you to add notes, and even the Audible app (for listening to audiobooks) allows you to insert typed notes at certain points in the recording.
I also like to skim through my notes and highlights upon finishing a book.
6. Plan a set time to briefly look over some of the books you’ve read for the year.
You could do this at the end of each week, every time you finish a book, or at the start or beginning of each month. It could as brief as just looking at your list or books you’ve read so far, or it could be as complex as looking at the table of contents for each book. Either way should help you recall elements and themes of your reading, and doing this frequently over the course of the year will help lodge them in your mind.
Do you have trouble recalling what you’ve read weeks and months (and years) later? What tips can you share that have helped you better remember what you’ve read?