I haven't received Sear's books yet and can only speak of books I have read. RIC in my opinion is the best reference I've seen so far. I like how everything is set up chronologically and the plates in the end makes it easy to search and find the coins you're looking for. History and info is also neatly written. I also like the Handbook of Coins books (Oliver D. Hoover). They chronologically showcase coins, no plates but pictures directly in order under the city and some history summary for every section. I think it's a more hands-on way of reading which is nice as you don't need to search for the coins in a plate section. From my own experience and preferences so far my go to books are RIC for roman imperial coins and Handbook of Coins for greek coins. I'm interested to hear what others have and prefer to use, and most importantly WHY do you like to use it?