GoodReads, LibraryThing, or Shelfari?

I currently have accounts at GoodReads, LibraryThing, and Shelfari. I can’t seem to commit to a single one.

Of the three, Shelfari seems the least complex, which in some ways is an advantage. Also, I like their “bookshelf” widgets, such as the one I use over on the left column of this blog. But I find the interface is somewhat awkward, and I find I use it mainly for the widget and as backup.

GoodReads seems to be the most social. There are all kinds of ways to follow people’s reviews, join discussions, and the like. Unfortunately, much as I love the idea of those features, I must admit I don’t actually use them because I have so many other demands on my time. I might have added a brief review once or twice. But to keep up with all my reading, not to mention all the books I added to my GoodReads account at the start…the very idea makes me want to go lie down and have palpitations.

Finally, there’s LibraryThing. It seems to be the most useful, to me, for cataloging purposes, and I purchased a permanent account some time ago. I entered my World War One research library, or most of it. One of these days…yes…I’m going to really put all of my books up there. Really, quite soon now. Any minute now I’m going to buy a CueCat to scan ISBNs, and unpack all the boxes of books in my closet, and scan those suckers! And my library will be complete and in one place!

Except for the books I’ve lent out. And the books that are stored with my family for various reasons. And…sigh.

One of these days.

About Victoria Janssen

Victoria Janssen [she, her] currently writes cozy space opera for Kalikoi. The novella series A Place of Refuge begins with Finding Refuge: Telepathic warrior Talia Avi, genius engineer Miki Boudreaux, and augmented soldier Faigin Balfour fought the fascist Federated Colonies for ten years, following the charismatic dissenter Jon Churchill. Then Jon disappeared, Talia was thought dead, and Miki and Faigin struggled to take Jon’s place and stay alive. When the FC is unexpectedly upended, Talia is reunited with her friends and they are given sanctuary on the enigmatic planet Refuge. The trio of former guerillas strive to recover from lifetimes of trauma, build new lives on a planet with endless horizons, and forge tender new connections with each other.
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2 Responses to GoodReads, LibraryThing, or Shelfari?

  1. Wendy says:

    I bought a lifetime membership to LibraryThing, and that’s the only service I use. At the time, GoodReads had just launched (?) and I liked the cataloging options on LT moreso than Shelfari.

    For me, I mainly just want a catalog service. I already have a blog. I’m already on Twitter. I’m also a half-assed Facebooker. The last thing I need in my life is another social network, and GR feels unnecessary to me because all my reads/reviews land on my blog eventually (hence, why I do monthly recap posts). I know oodles of people on GR, but meh. They’re people I follow already at other venues. Plus, I’m not sure I need more social networking “noise” in my life. Hey, a girl has to save sometime for reading :)

  2. Hey, a girl has to save sometime for reading :)

    Good point! I am thinking LT should be my catalogue-of-record.

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