Let’s talk about apps. I’ve done a few posts on apps before, like the best apps for college students, and the apps I use to edit my photos to post on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. I’m kind of ridiculous when it comes to apps. I love them, but I also don’t have tons on my phone. I’m not really into game-style apps, but I have tons of photo editing apps, and blog apps, and pretty much every form of social media in app form on my phone. I love apps, and I figured most of the world does too, at least the tech-savvy population. My phone is organized into little folders, and under social media, the top apps I use include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and others. One of my favorite apps for social media that people probably wouldn’t think of as social media, unless they are bibliophile.
Goodreads is an app for book nerds that allows you to track not only what you’re currently reading, what you’ve read, and what you want to read, but also the same details about your friends! This is great, especially for college students, because while you’re away from your fellow book nerds you can still monitor what they’re reading, and maybe discover some future reads!
The Goodreads app is set up so that it’s super easy to navigate. The ‘updates’ section is where you can find what your friends are up to. In other words, where you can see their book lists, what they’re wanting to read, how far they are in the book they are reading, as well as what groups they are part of within the app. The ‘my books’ section is where you find all your reading lists. My reading lists are currently “to-read,” “read,” “currently reading,” and “summer 2014.” The “scan” option is probably one of my absolute favorite things about this app. With this, you simply scan the barcode on the back or inside flap of a novel, and then can shelve it to whichever list you want. This way you always remember the books you find in bookstores that you want to read, but don’t necessarily want to buy right away. No more pesky paper lists that you stuff into your bag, and then have them disappear a week later. The ‘progress’ department is pretty self explanatory. This section allows you to post a general status update about which page of a book you are on, which is great if your reading a book as part of a book club or something where your progress is especially important. The ‘explore’ section is where you can peruse books and top lists and most downloaded books just as you would if you were in a bookstore. The ‘groups’ sections is for connecting with people or just following reading circles you enjoy. I’m part of two groups: The Rory Gilmore Book Club and the Banned Books group. ‘Challenge’ is a personal challenge regarding how many books you want to read in a year. “Recommended’ books are books that the app feels you would like based on what you want to read or read previously. ‘Friends’ is pretty self explanatory.
The other sections include your personal profile, where all your info is synthesized in one place, the ‘events section,’ which lists all literary events either online or near you, and the ‘eBooks’ section allows you to have mobile versions of books on your phone. I really love this because there are some situations where I really don’t feel like taking a physical copy of the book with me, and having it on my phone makes sure I can continue reading.
I usually have a really hard time mixing technology and reading. I tried to use a Nook when they first came out because I thought it seemed like an awesome tool, but I felt like it was way too impersonal, so I switched back to physical copies of books instead. I like feeling like I’ve accomplished something when I finish a book, and I feel like I feel more accomplished when I can see each page I read compiled into a single book. I’m also a huge advocate of the coffee stained novels piled up next to your bed…there’s something comforting in them.
BUT, this app feels like a perfect blend of technology and reading! Do you use Goodreads? If so, add me today, and share what you’re reading!