Shelfari and Reading Updates


Before I curl up with my books, I wanted to mention two things. First, I joined Shelfari today. I resisted joining another network because I am very happy at Goodreads. I am a member of LibraryThing, but unless you agree to pay for a membership, you are limited to only 200 books, so I am not at all active at LibraryThing. You might not remember this, but back in 2007 a controversy erupted over the fact that Shelfari did not used to allow users to easily uncheck the names of contacts they did not want to invite to use Shelfari. Tim Spalding, CEO of LibraryThing, also caught Shelfari astroturfing. However, I’ve not heard any criticism of Shelfari for two years, now, so I joined up. The interface is beautiful, and the community is more in charge. At Goodreads, you can apply to become a “Librarian” and edit book information, but Shelfari allows all community members to do so, which is both more risky and more open. Goodreads easily allows users to connect their accounts to Twitter, and it also allows me to share blog posts, but that may be because I’m a Goodreads author. As far as I can tell, Shelfari doesn’t allow you to do either of those things. So anyway, I’ve joined up, and we’ll see how it works out. Considering the time investment today, I hope it will be worthwhile. You can see my bookshelf in the sidebar to the right, and feel free to be my friend on Shelfari (and Goodreads, for that matter, but don’t expect too much if you become my friend on LibraryThing).

Second, I have begun two reading challenges: the Bibliophilic Books Challenge and the All About the Brontës Challenge. with my first selection, Syrie James’s The Secret Diaries of Charlotte Brontë. It should be obvious how the book meets the Brontë challenge, but in case you were wondering how it meets the Bibliophilic Challenge, it is the fictionalized diary of Charlotte Brontë, and at only about 50 pages in, James has already mentioned Rochester and Jane and discussed the juvenile writing of the Brontës, as well as Branwell Brontë’s poetry, so I decided it met the criteria for the challenge.

I’m also in the midst of re-reading the Outlander series. I have not read the last three books, and it has been so long that I think I had better re-read the first four before I try to pick up the most recent books. I am currently working on the second (and my favorite) book in the series, Dragonfly in Amber. I am continuing to read Crime and Punishment through DailyLit, and when I have to turn out the lights, I’m reading Mansfield Park on the iPhone with Stanza.


4 thoughts on “Shelfari and Reading Updates

  1. I have only ever been a member of LibraryThing, since I got the lifetime membership back in 2006, and have never really looked into the others but I wonder if there's a side-by-side comparison somewhere for Goodreads/LibraryThing/Shelfari/etc. I'm wondering if there are any other features (besides the Facebook thing) that Goodreads has that LibraryThing doesn't.

    1. I don't know if I've ever seen any side-by-side comparisons of each service, but I think you're right. That would be a great way to compare services and help folks decide which one to use.

  2. Another high potential for your Books About Reading Challenge: The Book of Unholy Mischief by Elle Newmark. I am half way through the audio version and I am enjoying it thoroughly. It is the story of a street urchin taken under the wing of an intriguing master chef in the palace of the Doge in Venice. Seduction and subterfuge are the order of the day as everyone, of high and low order, seeks out an ancient book with the secret to unimagineable power. To some, it is an alchemist’s dream, containing elixirs for love and eternal life. Others believe it to be a collection of the missing gospels that, by their very presence, could loosen the Pope’s grip on Renaissance Italy. The stakes are high, emotions run deep, and imaginations run wild in this well-written story.

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