Web Crush of the Week: Personal Online Libraries

Shelf RenewalBack in the day, I created an Access database to keep track of the books I read. I used it for several years, and then, all of a sudden, not one, not two, but THREE online services popped up that made that old database completely obsolete. (That’s my current to-be-read pile below, and no, I haven’t entered any of those into my online library yet!)

Shelfari, GoodReads, and LibraryThing all do the same thing with a little different feel. Personally, I’m a Shelfari fan. I just like the look of it and find it easier to use. Also note, LibraryThing limits the number of books you can have with a free account.

What happens when someone asks you for
a personal recommendation? Everything
you’ve just read goes flying right out of your
brain and you can’t recall a thing.

tbr pile

If you haven’t already signed up for a free account at one of these sites, do so immediately! You will not only appreciate it for your own use, but it can save your butt at work as well. If you’re anything like me, what happens when someone asks you for a personal recommendation? Everything you’ve just read goes flying right out of your brain and you can’t recall a thing. Use one of these sites, and it’s mere moments until you have recommendations right in front of you.

(Library staff: You can also use these sites for staff-wide reading lists as well. Set up a staff account, and everyone can enter the books they’re reading, complete with annotations and ratings. Bookshelf widgets are available to post on your library’s website to showcase what the staff is currently reading.)

What do you think? Do you use one (or more) of these sites? What do you like about the one you’re using?

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About the Author:

Rebecca Vnuk is the editor for Collection Management and Library Outreach at Booklist. She is also the author of 3 reader’s-advisory nonfiction books: Read On…Women’s Fiction (2009), Women’s Fiction: A Guide to Popular Reading Interests (2014), and Women’s Fiction Authors: A Research Guide (2009). Follow her on Twitter at @Booklist_RVnuk.

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