You might want to look at these two websites:http://www.digitalvocationguide.org/vision/2010#pg1http://vocation-network.org/
I am unaware of any book length treatments comparing various forms of religious life. Thomas Merton wrote The Silent Life
decades ago about the various forms of strict monasticism. Recently, Dominic Monti wrote Francis and His Brothers
about the history of Franciscan men.
Part of the issue is that religious communities are living things, like families. Each has a spirit, both in the technical sense of a charism and in the sense of just having a "vibe" that distinguishes them, and even distinguishes different provinces of the same order.
I would suggest that you begin to talk to someone directly, and go from there. You should be able to visit different communities informally. Before I joined the Capuchins, I had visited many groups, and began to feel that I could assess a community very quickly after a while - think of "speed dating" where people assess whether there is any hope of a possibility very quickly.
Finally, trust God and trust the Church. God usually puts us in contact with the people and groups he wants us to interact with, if we keep our eyes and ears open. Trust the Church, which has tested religious orders over the decades and centuries. There is something romantic about new start up groups, and some are called to them. But they will go through their growing pains, and that may be difficult when those growing pains occur.