Back in mid-July, I was introduced to the Goodreads website by a friend. I had always seen links to it when searching for book titles, but didn’t have a clue what it was. I thought it was something like Amazon, so I never really bothered to click the links.
Well… Am I ever glad that I was finally informed about the site. I have since told everyone that I know about it, and I hope that everyone signs up for an account. It’s this really neat social media site, really, where you rate and review books that you’ve read, follow authors and learn about all sorts of new books. It is not a site that sells things to you; it’s a site that allows you to learn about books.
I linked my account through my Facebook account, so I could easily find my friends who use the site.
My favourite things about Goodreads.com are:
- Book Shelves (Lists): Currently Reading / Read / Want to Read
- Reading Challenge
- Customized Recommendations
Book Shelves (Lists): Currently Reading / Want to Read / Read
This feature allows you to add the books that you are currently reading to a list to track how long it is taking you to read and perhaps just to remember that they’re on your list of things you want to achieve before the year is out.
Want to Read:
This is my fullest shelf by far. I love that I can browse recommendations, books that friends have read and reviewed and books by genre to find out what I might want to read. This is opening my eyes to an enormous number of titles and authors that I didn’t yet know but which I can’t wait to get my hands on.
I really like this option, too, because it allows me to rate and review the books that I have read. I don’t write reviews about all the books, but about some. And I really appreciate being able to track my thoughts and feelings about the things I’ve read. I like being able to read friends’ reviews as well.
You are given the chance to set a reading goal for the year of how many books you want to read. I set mine to thirty books this year. That might have been a little ambitious, but I am at least striding for it. I find that having the challenge really inspires me to read. I’m a lot more focused on it now that I have a goal that I look at every day.
Authors and publishers are sponsoring free giveaways of books all the time. There’s a page on the site that allows you to browse them and enter (each entry is free – and who doesn’t like free?) yourself into the draw.
The bonus of this function is that Goodreads will automatically email you when a book that you’ve added to your “want to read” shelf has been entered as a giveaway. It’s nice that the website helps give you opportunities to win free books that you’re interested in.
By adding books to the shelves, you give Goodreads the information it needs to formulate a list of recommendations of other books that you might like to read. It’s hard to always know what books you might like, so a website that generates suggestions based upon books that you are reading, have read or want to read is a great help – and a really neat concept.