“How Long Will It Take to Read This Book?”

So Many Books So Little Time

In a recent blogpost, bookish blogger Alexander Atkins mentions a heretofore unknown-to-me genuine Internet Wonder, a website developed by Idaho-based Bridger Putnam that will tell you, based on your reading speed, how many hours it will take for you to finish reading any given book.

I just plugged into the website the title of the book my book club just finished reading this week and found the results to be quite plausible.

Given the difficult – and important – choices book clubs are constantly forced to make, and the numerous factors that sometimes go into choosing one book over other candidates, this tool could come in mighty handy at times in resolving some of those choices.

And for any reader, even those not participating in (or even allergic to) book clubs, this tool is also a sobering reminder of ye olde adage “So Many Books, So Little Time.”

Found at Atkins’s Bookshelf blog

Social Networks for Avid Readers

Responding to the controversial sale of GoodReads to Amazon.com earlier this year, ThirdScribe recently summarized the features of almost a dozen reader-centric social networks.

Not covered in ThirdScribe’s survey is yet another new social network for readers (which we saw mentioned at The Paris Review) called Riffle. An article describing Riffle is posted at Publishers Weekly.

You’ll find links to all these book-recommending, book-discussing, reading tracking/personal library-cataloging networks in The Atlanta Booklover’s Blog’s “Booklover’s Toolbox,” under the heading Social Networks (Title Recommendations, Book Discussions, Blogs, and Book Inventory Software) .


The Books Most Esteemed by Book Writers

Top Ten Books Cover ImageJ. Peter Zane, author of The Top Ten: Writers Pick Their Favorite Books (2007) and Remarkable Reads: Writers and Their Adventures in Reading (2004), has created a website that continues the work of publicizing the favorite books of over one hundred American and British writers.

The website includes the annotated lists from the 2007 book, as well as lists garnered from authors since then. The site also includes a master list of every title mentioned in any of the lists, a list of every author cited, a list of titles divided into categories (for example, “The Top Ten Books by Russian Authors”), and top-ten lists selected from the site’s readers.

Zane’s website – especially because each reading recommendation is annotated – could be a handy tool for booklovers wanting guidance for picking their next book, and especially for the subset of booklovers who have decided that the most rational solution to the “too many books, too little time” dilemma is to focus their reading solely on classic or at least highly-recommended titles. Although you’ll find many citations of The Usual Suspects on these writer-recommended lists, you’ll also find passionate recommendations for titles you’ve never heard of.

Mary Kalfatovic recently posted to The Committee Room blog her fascinating article about Zane’s project to gather and publish writers’ favorite titles.

Because we think Zane’s website is so potentially useful for booklovers everywhere, we’ve added a link to his site under the heading “Reading Recommendations” in our Booklover’s Toolbox.

Found via a Facebook post written by booklover (and Atlanta bookstore manager) Al Cotton

GoodReads, A Resource for Booklovers

Earlier this month, the New York Times posted a story about Goodreads, the most popular book-centric website on the Internet.

If it’s reader-written book reviews you’re after, Goodreads has 21 million of them. Plus a lot of other features and tools for the avid (computer-owning) booklover.

Mentioned in the story are two similar book-focused social networks, LibraryThing and Shelfari.