In the olden days, one had to painstakingly write down and keep track of the books one had in one’s to-read pile. I for one had them all locked up in a cabinet away from pesky dust mites and had no real staking regiment to know which book to read next. Once I had devised a plan to write down the titles of 20 books on little strips of paper and literally pull them out of a hat to help me choose which book I should read next.
My problem was keeping track of the books I read in a particular series. My first attempt was printing off lists of that author’s bibliography and manually checking off each book I had read. Then to save on paper, I kept an excel sheet which also reminded me when the next book of a particular series was going to be released. However, after a few years of tirelessly updating said excel sheet, I got tired of it. It was a hassle but I was resilient because it was the only option I had at the moment.
Before I move on to the incredible find that replaced my super awesome excel sheet, I shall point out the first of the tools of a book obsessed person. It is none other than the fabulous site www.Goodreads.com.
I stumbled upon this website in the year 2008. It was relatively new at the time, about a year old. Finally, a website dedicated to books! I could keep track of my library. Catagorize them. Visually see what I have in my to read pile. Credible reviews which I can trust more than other sites such as amazon.com. It was, and still is, a haven to any reader out there. They slowly grew over the years and introduced many new features, one of which is my ultimate favourite – the Goodreads recommendation system. In earlier years, I had relied on the recommendations that were spewed by Amazon based on my purchase history. The system was completely flawed. It actually kept recommended books that I had already bought from them! I grew frustrated from such inaccurate recommendations which always resulted in me reading a completely useless book. On the other hand, the Goodreads recommendation system kept recommending me books that were exactly what I had need based on the books I had in my library and based on how I had tagged each book by genre.
The only thing that was missing from Goodreads was a way to track the books in a series. As I pointed out earlier, I went down the Excel sheet road and found it a bit tiring. Apps on smartphones were tried as well but they didn’t fully satisfy what I needed. That was when I discovered the second tool of a book obsessed person – FictFact!
One word: Spectacular.
It even has a calendar of when the next book of each series you are reading is going to be released! I have no words to describe how much this website has helped me organize my to read pile in terms of book series, seeing as how I follow almost 43 book series! One can now prioritize which book to read next quite easily!
Lastly, for the on the go reader, the last tool of a book obsessed person, the Kindle. I no longer have to carry with a bunch of books while travelling since one can carry them all in a simple dainty device lovingly known as the Kindle. With each iteration of this device, the wiz kids at amazon appease our obsession such as the new Kindle Paperwhite. One can now safely read in the dark without annoying the people with or as I usually do, read in the car. Yes, I used to carry a little flashlight to illuminate my ordinary book as I read and immersed myself in the story. The lengths I would go to just to know what will happen next!
The newest Kindle Paperwhite (WiFi) is available on the Amazon website for $119 (with special offers) or $139 (without special offers) and can be purchased last I checked in Virgin Megastores in Bahrain City Centre.