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20 September 2011


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For some reason, Goodreads is only fixated on certain things I read (books about Africa, classics that I can download to my kindle for free), but ignores a lot of things I do read. I have to say that the Semmelweis book and "Pushed" (TBR still), have also made a HUGE impact on what Goodreads thinks I should be reading.

I'll be getting my reading suggestions from blogs like yours, friend, NPR... Just like I do now.

Well, I'll believe that. I'm guessing the algorithm gets better the more people have certain titles in their databases--classics and the like. Perhaps the Semmelweis book is not in a lot of people's databases and therefore more powerfully skews results? I would be interested in seeing the fiction/nonfiction percentage in Goodreads too.
I personally never used it because it seemed too much like work--if I'm "cataloging" books, I don't have time to be reading, and that's really all I want to do.

Goodreads (or Library Thing, Shelfari etc.) can be a time-suck...just like anything on the internet. But for non-bloggers like myself, it is a great way to keep track of what I have read and what I want to read as well as having immediate access to other peoples opinions on what I have just finished reading.

I had fun checking out my "recommended reading" on goodreads...but as to its accuracy? I don't know. I would have to read one of them first and let you know. I can tell you that none of the recommended books are on my (mental) TBR list. And I read so little non-fiction, goodreads did not even bother to give me suggestions (and I read the Semmelweis book too!). Oddly enough, I did get five recommendations based on what I was most recently reading "Master and Commander"...all historical/naval/military type books. I liked "Master and Commander" and may continue with the series, but I don't have any interest in reading say, Horatio Hornblower books...but goodreads thinks I should.

Yes, I understand these programs are a good way to keep your own reading lists. I'm trying to remember how I tracked my reading before CR, and I think if I kept any track at all, I just sometimes wrote things down (quotes, titles) in a little journal. I think I toyed with the idea of a spreadsheet or database but the thought of setting up either, as per usual, made me cry. I hate Excel.

I'm fascinated by the whole accuracy/Goodreads question. I must say it's an issue I really don't understand, as my only problem is finding too many books to read. Who needs recommendations when the TBR pile is already too big? But I also read all over the place so I have lots of options. People with a taste only for noir mysteries, for example, I understand might need to seek out recommendations to keep finding titles in their niche.

Perhaps Goodreads more heavily weights your recent reading entries for suggestions? This is one thing that makes me nervous about algorithms--I'm never quite certain of the variables and what they're really computing.

I love goodreads for tracking what I read and seeing if other's have also read something but I don't get too overboard with it. My favorite thing is that I can have a place to list books I want to read someday and who told me about it. and for keeping up with Ruthiella! :)
But I have yet to even bother to check what books goodreads thinks I should read. I already have too many!

btw, I came over here to check if you've read any Marilyn Johnson (specifically, The Dead Beat) and have been catching up on past posts. I very much enjoy your blog.

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