If you've ever felt flummoxed by the rhetoric in more "advanced" level books, it might be a good idea to employ some equalizing techniques so that you can understand what it is that you're reading. Blogger Ryan Holiday says that the best thing you can do is to remember that you're reading for no one else but yourself. While some bibliophiles would disagree, Ryan says that you might want to ruin the ending to understand the specific themes to be discussed throughout the book. Also, check out reviews to find out what's important to other readers. While reading, if you're confused with a word, look it up. Highlight important passages and take notes.
Before you close the book for good, review your notes once again. Additionally, if you want to broaden your knowledge in a particular subject matter, read related books (often found in the bibliographies themselves). Start connecting what you've read with your everyday life. Ryan says that applying these skills has caused him to "leap years ahead" of his peers. What tricks do you utilize when reading complex books?