Try to answer each of these questions BEFORE you begin to read. Obviously, you will not be able to answer all of them fully and correctly, but give it a shot. As you read, you will notice that your first impressions of the text will either change or remain basically the same, but they will most certainly EVOLVE. After you have finished reading, come back to these questions again, and revise your answers.
What is your worldview? Are you a Christian/Buddhist/Muslim, etc…? Are you liberal or conservative? Are you a man or a woman? What are your biases? Are you and I going to get along?
What is your tone? Are you in a good mood or a bad mood? Are you going to make me laugh or piss me off?
Who are the main characters, and which ones am I going to like/hate?
What are these people like? What do they believe? What makes them tick? What do they want out of life?
Which of these characters do I identify with most?
How are the characters related to one another? (For epics and other large and complicated texts you may need to map these relationships). Do any of these relationships make me feel uncomfortable?
What are the most important events? Has anything like this ever happened to me or to someone I know? If it is an historical event, have I ever heard of it? What do I know about it? Is the text accurate?
What are the most important ideas? How comfortable or uncomfortable do these ideas make me?
What is the setting? Have I ever been there? Would I like to go?