Track Your Reading: Why and How

Before I started keeping track of what I had read, I would find myself reading books that felt familiar before realizing that I had read them before. Bibliodejavu. I hated it because I always felt like precious reading time had been wasted. Rereading a book can be fun and rewarding when done on purpose, but it can be a waste of time and money if you didn’t actually want to reread the book.  So how do I keep track of the books I’ve read? There are so many ways you can do so yourself.


Goodreads

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Goodreads is probably one of the most popular reading/book tracking tools out there. It’s easy to use, thorough, customizable, and can quickly spit out stats on your reading behaviors. Goodreads is a website that combines reading-tracking with social media. You can mark books as “to read,” “reading” and “read.” You can rate them and get recommendations based on your ratings. You can also create “bookshelves” that allow you to group the books you’ve read in different ways. On top of all of this, you can “friend” people and follow their reading progress and take a peek at their shelves. Goodreads is a great way to keep track of your reading and find your next great read.


LibraryThing

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This is probably the best solution for somebody who wishes to track their reading history together with their personal library. It contains a lot of information. You can sort your lists by traditional facets like title and author, but you can also choose Series or Dewey decimal classification. It has a built in tool to track who you lend your books to, and you can create custom item records for each book you enter. LibraryThing makes it very easy to import and export lists you have already made from other sources (Goodreads, Amazon, Excel), so you don’t have to start from scratch.


Apps

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Of course there are several Apps that can be used to track your reading history…there’s an App for everything, right? Goodreads has a free App containing the features that I have described above; I have been completely content with it, so have not tried any of the other Apps available. Book Crawler, iBookshelf, iReaditnow, BookBuddy, ReadMore are some examples. Some are free, some have bar-code scanners, some allow for exporting or sharing. You can find whatever you need in a tracking app, just search your phone app store for “tracking reading” or “tracking books” and browse descriptions and reviews.


Notebook

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Perhaps the most archaic of the solutions I am reviewing, but it has worked well for many people, for many years, and will continue to be a reliable solution for years to come. Grab a pen, grab a notebook, and you’re set.


How do you keep track of your reading?

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