Six alternatives to Goodreads
April 2, 2013 | 10:15 am
When Amazon announced the purchase of Goodreads, many readers were skeptical about the future of the social reading site. Goodreads allowed users to add reviews and keep track of the books they read and interact with others on the site.
Some readers are concerned with how the site might change and are looking for an alternative.
Here are a couple of sites that you might consider:
Library Thing – The site claims to have 1.6 million users and calls itself “the world’s largest book club.” Books are catalogued from Amazon, The Library of Congress and other sites. It should be noted that Amazon is a partial owner of Library Thing, so if you’re looking to get away from Amazon, this may not be the site for you.
Library Thing is free for the first 200 books, otherwise it’s $10 a year or $25 for life. Right now, Library Thing is offering a free year if you sign up by Friday at midnight.
Library Thing claims that new Goodreads users have added more than 500,000 books to its system—already feeling the ripples of the Amazon acquisition.
Libib – This is a library management app for books, movies and video games—and it’s free. The app is mainly for cataloging your own collections, along with reviews, but it can be published for others to see.
The app allows you to keep an unlimited amount of notes.
While libib doesn’t have the social aspect of Goodreads, it does allow you to share your reviews and collections through social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook.
The Reading Room – This site seems to closely resemble Goodreads in that it allows discussions and you can join book clubs. The Reading Room provides reviews, recommendations and news on the book world.
“We’re not the biggest kid on the block and we’re not perfect but we are constantly improving,” the company writes on its ‘about’ page. “We want our site to be a life log of your reading, where you can manage your bookshelf, participate in book clubs, preview sample chapters, read respected book reviews, access all the latest bestsellers and award winners, view author interviews, and buy books through a range of retailers. Most importantly, we want it to be a place where you can be yourself.”
The Reading Room seems to operate much like Goodreads, but the community isn’t nearly as large.
Riffle – This site is in beta right now, so it’s not available for everyone. Riffle shows off books like a Pinterest board. You can follow other readers and check out their lists, but the social aspect is lacking. You can share your libraries, but there doesn’t seem to be much more than listing books and checking out what other people read.
Bookish – The site has gotten a lot of attention since the Goodreads announcement. Readers can add books to shelves and give reviews. The site is aimed towards recommendations and allowing users to find new books—on a limited basis—rather than building a community.
The only social aspect is sharing books and information about authors on social media sites. Readers can also purchase books.
Collectorz.com – This offers a way to catalog books through ISBN numbers. Full details are entered, including cover art. You can also scan your hard disk for e-book files. Collectors can export data into an app available on Apple products and Android.
Readers can try the software for free (limited to 100 books); the standard version costs $29.95.
Collectorz, however, doesn’t seem to allow for the social aspect as well as some of the other sites mentioned here. Essentially, it’s just a library catalog for your books.