Books Magazine

Top Ten Online Book Resources

By Curlygeek04 @curlygeek04

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic (hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl) is our favorite online book resources, which is something I have lots of opinions about.

Sites for book tracking, reviewing, and recommendations.  This year I started using The StoryGraph in addition to Goodreads.  At the moment I’m still using both, but I hope to switch over to one at some point so I’m not doing everything twice. 

  • Top Ten Online Book Resources

What I like about The StoryGraph:

  • Tracking challenges
  • It categorizes books by genre, mood, etc. so I don’t have to.
  • More data analysis – it creates lots of graphs and pie charts to show me what I’m reading.
  • Better book recommendations.

What I prefer about Goodreads:

  • A little easier to navigate. 
  • Unlimited ways to categorize books. 
  • I can use a widget to share what I’m currently reading on my blog.
  • It’s easier to write and post reviews (StoryGraph has a structured review format).
  • Many more readers, so its easier to connect with others and lead people to the blog.

Sites for free books.

I love Overdrive and my library websites.  Overdrive and related app Libby make it so easy to  create wish lists, put books on hold, and download books when they’re available.  It’s a great source for both ebooks and audiobooks, so I always have plenty to read.  I can even “recommend” a book when the libraries don’t stock it, and then if they purchase it, the book comes to me automatically. 

I’ve been using NetGalley to pick up advance review copies for a long time.  The trick with NetGalley is only to request books you really want to read.  Otherwise you’ll get bogged down with books you should read but don’t have time for, which then hurts your reviewer profile.  I try to use NetGalley pretty sparingly, but it’s a fantastic way to get the newest books from some of my favorite authors.

Sites for reading ideas and information.

I write a lot about Modern Mrs. Darcy, by Anne Bogel.  It’s a wonderful source of book recommendations, from creative book lists like “31 mystery novels avid readers recommend again and again” to the What Should I Read Next? Podcast.  And if you’re a paying member of the site,  you also have access to the MMD community, book club, and book events. 

The Mary Sue is a website focused on science fiction and fantasy geekdom in all its forms (TV, movies, books) but viewed through a feminist lens.  So they profile a lot of diverse female authors and also are deeply critical of entertainment that’s sexist or racist or homophobic.  Books are a rather small part of the website but I do enjoy their monthly book recommendations, and since so many books are turned into shows and movies, I find a lot of books that way too. 

Audie awards (AudioFile Magazine): I don’t have a lot of good sources for audiobook recommendations, and wish I did.  But I was happy to discover this website that gives out “Audie Awards” every year to audiobooks in a wide range of categories.

  • Top Ten Online Book Resources

Sites for connecting with readers.

I found my current book club a few years ago using, and if I was looking for another book club, there are tons of options on this website.  It’s an easy way to connect with people who share your interests, and it’s helpful because you can see if they meet in your area and what types of books they read.  The only downside is that these book clubs are basically open to the public, so I’ve found it’s difficult to build personal connections in these clubs because members change so often.  On the other hand, if you’re looking for book clubs where people really read and discuss the books (rather than friends just getting together to drink wine) this is a great resource.  Of course I live in a metropolitan area, so there are tons of people on Meetup, and that probably won’t be true in more rural or remote areas.

Sites for creating blog graphics

I’m still very much a novice at making blog graphics, though I’d love to get better.  I’ve been using PicMonkey for the last few years, and this year my friend Stephanie from SGW Design introduced me to Canva, which I need to explore more.  I’m paying for both at the moment, and not really having the time to learn to use them, but I hope to make this a priority in the next year. 

Sites for buying books

  • Top Ten Online Book Resources

When I tried to find a book vendor that wasn’t Amazon, I discovered Kobo and I’ve been pretty happy with them. Their selection is more limited than Amazon, but since I get most of my reading from the library anyway, Kobo helps fill out my options nicely.  For audiobooks, I pay a monthly fee that’s less than Audible and get one audiobook a month.  For ebooks, they sometimes have really good sales and I can keep a wishlist as I can with Amazon, and pick something up when it’s a good price or I need to read something that isn’t at the library.  Their website is easy to use, and I bought a Kobo e-reader so my purchases sync up with my reader (which also syncs up with Overdrive). 

Those are the online reading I resources I use most often!  I hope you find some of these recommendations useful, and would love to hear what you’re using. 

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