I will describe what I mean by the above with an example.
Suppose you are a professor, about to teach a first Calculus course in a university. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of calculus books out there. How do you choose which one to use as a reference for your course? You may narrow it down to a few books, but how do you actually read the ones in the final list to make a choice?
In another example, continuing from the preceding one, maybe you just choose the one you used as a student, but next month a new Calculus book comes about and attracts a lot of attention. How do you read it to know if, next semester, you could use it instead of the original one?
I cannot possibly believe a math professor has the time to study them in depth to know what they contain, what are their pros/cons, etc, as, at least in my experience, it takes from weeks to months to read a book in depth, doing some exercises, even if you already know most of the contents.
So do they just read the books like a novel? Do a quick en-passant through each one to have some idea of the differences?
I would really like to know the answer, since, as a student, every good book I know has been recommended by someone else - but, at some point, I would like to be able to make my own judgement.
Thanks in advance!
Just to clarify, I know there is no "correct" answer, but I would really like people who have been through this' opinions/techniques. Also, I used calculus only as an example, so the same question can be asked regarding any type of math book.
PS: This is a port of my original (now closed) question on MSE, which was asked to be ported over to this community