There is no best way to read but there are a great many strategies you can use. Think of them more as options rather than rules. Try them out and then decide which ones work best for you.
Faster reading skills will enable you to read more in less time, have better concentration, understand material with greater depth and accuracy, retain information better and enjoy reading more.
My Top Tips for Reading Non-Fiction:
1. Don't believe the lie that you have to read every word. Deciding what is worth reading is as important as reading fast.
2. With a newspaper article, read the first 2-3 paragraphs, skim through the rest and then read the final 2 paragraphs. That will give you the gist of the article, then you can decide if you want to read it more in depth.
3. With a book, read the front and back cover, then glance over the table of contents, read the introduction or foreword, then the conclusion. You might want to glance quickly through the contents inbetween, noting headings, diagrams or chapter summaries. This approach is like hovering over a large city central business district with a helicopter, catching the lie of the land, the shape of the city streets, before deciding you want to walk every alley way (which you dont have to do if you dont want to)! This approach enables you do clarity the 'big idea' of the book even before having read it in detail.
4. For a book you have chosen to read indepth, underline when you read. Highlight headings, key words or memorable sentences.
5. As you finish each chapter, make a bullet point list of the main points, insights or takeaways in the blank area at the end of the chapter. When you have finished the entire book doing this, you can then look back and you have a summary of the book ready for instant recollection.
6. Try not to read horizontally from left to right with your eye stopping on every word. Instead, try to take snap shots of an entire line or paragraph at once, using your eye's amazing periphial vision. You'll be amazed at how much you can take in this way.
For more, check out the following helpful resources: