I know, I should still love bookshops. Coffee infused aisles of wonder. Large chairs and sofas to relax in and read a section of a book you might buy. A place to sit, while your other half undergoes their shopping adventure in a nearby mall. A place of solace, surrounded by knowledge and adventure.
So you walk into your large local bookshop with a book recommendation written on a piece of paper, from one of your literary friends, who has told you about the latest life-changing book action thriller poetry. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a few other perspectives on the book? You saunter up to the gum-chewing, English graduate shop-assistant, and request the recommended work of genius. The look of derision speaks volumes to the possible garbage you are about to buy, and a feeble arm is raised, to point you to the aisle of doom. Your mind drifts to the in-house coffee shop. Maybe a double espresso would make the book choice easier. The barista may have a better recommendation. Where is everyone who can help recommend a better read?
And so I joined Goodreads.
Described around the internet, as a social media site for readers and lovers of all things literary, I signed up and filled out my basic profile. Then I noticed the virtual bookshelf functionality, and for a habitual collector of things, I was in hoarding heaven.
It is a very intuitive site, easy to navigate and understand. You collect the books you want to read from your favourite genre(s), read them, leave a review and move onto the next book.
Reviewing adds social gravitas (or removes it) to your last read thus helping other readers to make their choices. Self-published authors rely heavily on your reviews, and I have to say that it is nice to become part of their team. If like a book, leave a review or a star rating?
Here are ten things I love about Goodreads.
A digital librarian
It’s a well thought out site and managed by people who love reading and reviewing books (wonderfully named – Librarians).
The reader comes first
Goodreads is about the books and the people who read and review them, no matter what the format they are published in. It is not about Authors pushing their books because this is frowned upon.
Social media for readers
I have yet to buy a book based on a recommendation from someone on Twitter or Facebook. My book purchases are now almost all from recommendations on Goodreads.
The start of your buying process
I read the book blurb I’m interested in, plus the collection of reviews on Goodreads then I scoot over to Smashwords and see if I can buy it from them. If the author’s not listed there, I go to Amazon and purchase the book for my Kindle.
All the books I have read recently, except for a friend’s novel, have come via a book recommendation or by following an author that someone has suggested.
Easier than Amazon
It is easier to follow reviews and reviewers on Goodreads than it is on Amazon or other online stores (you can also connect and befriend readers and reviewers).
It’s just about books
Again, it is a social network for readers and authors. It’s for people who love reading, not sharing photos of cats, their latest meal or some charity that needs money.
Genre groups to join
There are groups, split by genre or similar interests, which you can join and engage with other readers (and authors) about books.
Scan the book barcodes
The mobile app also has a scan function, which allows you to scan the bar-code of a printed book, so you can see what others have thought. So if you are visiting a friend and they have a new ‘amazing’ novel, you can have the opinion of several others, right at your fingertips
Finally, it’s also a place for authors
As a Goodreads author, it does allow me to have my novels and short stories listed and displayed on my Author profile. Obviously, spamming readers is heavily frowned upon, so you do so at the risk of wrath from the Librarians.
I’d love to connect with you on Goodreads so please look at my profile and let’s compare books
I have a growing book catalogue CLICK HERE to see all my books
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