Updated: Oct 17, 2021
Reading is without doubt, the best way to improve your English vocabulary.
But firstly you need answers to the following questions...
How should you read?
To start with, reading freely will be quite difficult. With practice, you will find it will become easier and easier!
Ensure that you sit with a pen and piece of paper (or a notes app on your phone).
Whenever you meet a word or phrase that you are unfamiliar with, make a note of it.
After you finish reading for that session, go through the words and write their meanings
Write an example sentence for each word.
This process will help to demonstrate to your brain that this information is worth storing.
When you combine this process with the ‘when should you read’ step, your vocabulary will improve in no time!
When should you read?
When should you read? EVERY DAY! Put it in your daily schedule for at least 10 minutes every day... more if you can manage it!! Also review all the vocabulary that you have on your list daily, to keep the words fresh in your mind. Make it a mission to use as many of them during the day as possible too!
What should you read?
The easy answer is... whatever you like. Read whatever interests you, whether it is a newspaper article, a good detective novel or even an instruction booklet. The more variety, the better, since you will be exposed to different subjects and therefore different vocabulary.
I have some recommendations...
I’m currently reading: Michelle Obama – Becoming
I’m 25% through and am finding it an interesting autobiography. So far, so good!
Next: Take Your Shot – Robin Waite
This was recommended by one of my favourite Youtubers – Ali Abdaal. I read the Kindle sample and found it to be quite inspiring – I will let you know how I get on with it.
Robert Galbraith – (aka JK Rowling) – She has written a series of detective novels which are really good – give him (her) a go! Start from the beginning – these should be read in order.
The first one is The Cuckoo’s Calling.
David Baldacci – Action packed – My favourite of his books contain the character... Amos Decker, who is an FBI consultant with a perfect memory.
My favourite is the first of this character Memory Man. It’s worth reading this one first.
Lee Childs – Action packed – my favourite books contain the character ...Jack Reacher... read them in whichever order you like – they are all gripping.
My favourite is Killing Floor..
Lesley Pearse – Dramatic fiction. Her older books are historical – her newer ones are based in more recent times. Always a page turner!
My favourite is Remember Me.
Marian Keyes - Aimed at a primarily female audience aged around 21 – 30. Her books are fun romantic comedies and are glorious!
My favourite is Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married.
The Hunger Games Trilogy - from 13+ - Science fiction – This is a fabulous trilogy of books – which have been turned into films. The books are better though (I will always say that by the way!).
Start at the beginning – the first one is called (surprisingly) The Hunger Games
Harry Potter – from 13+ - Magical Fiction – Everyone has heard of this character. If you have not watched the films, be wary of words that may well not be English – they may be magic terms – you will still get a defintion if you google them... and you will usually be able to get away with using them in day to day life – perhaps not in a business meeting. The first one is either called Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone or if you are in the US, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone.
The Happiness Project – Non – fiction. This is a lovely read about an experiment that was done to make yourself happier – worth trying out!