Meet Your Next Favorite Book


This is the slogan on the homepage of my new favorite website, Goodreads.com.  Have you seen it?  Have you used it?   Let me tell you about it.

Essentially it is a book lover’s site.  You can follow your friends in what they are reading, make new friends and see what they are reading, check out reviews, find leads for new reading material and all of your Goodreads friends can follow your book adventures too.  Over 10 million people have discovered it since its launch in 2007.  If you have used Facebook then the site will have a familiar feel.  If not, you’ll still find Goodreads.com to be fun and user friendly.

It doesn’t cost anything to join or use.  The site will only need your name and an email address to get you started.  You have the opportunity to develop your “about me” section and add a photo at any time.
Now the fun starts!   You can create “read” “currently reading” and “to read” bookshelves.  After finishing a book you can write a review.  You can read other users’ reviews to get ideas for future reads or compare notes on books that you have finished (or had to put down because you simply couldn’t finish—it was that bad!).  Like Facebook, you can “friend” others on the site.  Check your friends’ bookshelves and reviews for ideas.  Connect your account to your Facebook or Twitter profiles and you can share your reading adventures with more internet friends.

And there is so much more you’ll want to do—give yourself reading challenges, find friends and chat on discussion boards, book giveaways, virtual book clubs, trivia contests, make your own custom bookshelves like, “to-reread” or “guilty pleasures.”   With a simple app from your mobile device you can type in the ISBN of a book at the library or bookstore and pull up the book’s reviews on Goodreads.  The site also gives you the opportunity to connect with authors, including scheduled web chats.  Budding authors are able to post their own writing.

I learned of Goodreads by word of mouth and my Facebook friends’ book recommendations.  I gave it a try after a local patron, Kyle Smith, gave a talk at the Hightstown Branch introducing Goodreads to patrons and staff.  I want to thank her for her instruction and enthusiasm.  After her talk I wanted to just jump in!  If you are a book lover, you will want to jump into Goodreads.com too!

- Kim L.

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