Posts Tagged ‘LibraryThing’

Tuesday Thingers – Tagging

June 10, 2008

Today’s question is about tags- do you tag? How do you tag? How do you feel about tagging- do you think it would be better to have standardized tags, like libraries have standardized subject headings, or do you like the individualized nature of tagging? What are your top 5 tags and what do they say about your collection or your reading habits?

My tagging methods have changed somewhat over my year at LT.  When I first joined, I used my tags as a basis for organizing my physical library.  Basically I was using hierarchical tags, but I was not calling them that.  A set of tags for a book might be historical fiction, Europe, England, 16th century.  Books were organized alphabetically by each successive tag.  Historical fiction was after just fiction, but before history.  Historical fiction from England came right before historical fiction based in France.  It was a somewhat cumbersome process and was sort of annoying to have to think through every time I added a new book to my library.
After having to pack and unpack all of my books, I decided to abandon my tagging organization – mostly because I didn’t want to have to meticulously order all of my books again.  Besides that, I think tagging is more interesting when there is some content tagging, as opposed to mere genre/subject tagging, like I was doing before.  This helps me see the cross-genre connections between my books.  All my books dealing with immigration, for instance, books that wouldn’t necessarily be shelved together.

This subject-based tagging is definitely a work in progress, but it is made so much easier by LibraryThing’s new tag page, which easily lets me tweak my tagging so that I don’t have two similar tags.

Tuesday Thingers – Why LT?

June 3, 2008

Post 99!!

Why LT?

Why did you choose to open and maintain an LT account? Do you/did you use other online cataloging/social networking sites, like GoodReads or Shelfari? Do you use more than one? Are they different or do they serve different purposes?

LibraryThing was the first of the social networking booksites I learned of. A good friend of mine told me about it and strongly insisted that I join, so that she (and others) could peruse my library. I joined and signed up for a lifetime membership immediately, simply based on the strength of the cataloging, with no idea about the social aspects. My oh-so-enthusiastic friend promptly stopped doing anything with LT at all, although she has recently re-joined.

I started plugging into the social side of LibraryThing after learning about the Early Reviewers program in order to figure out how to increase my chances of winning and was promptly addicted. I have a couple of friends who have joined GoodReads, so I keep thinking about creating an account over there as well. However, I simply don’t have the energy to update two different accounts. If I did, I’d keep my wishlist separated from my library on LibraryThing. I have also thought about joining GoodReads or Shelfari to network with more book bloggers, but I just can’t seem to get excited enough about either one to do it. Because LT is what I know, they seem like a lesser thing to me, because they aren’t LibraryThing. I’m sure that both GoodReads and Shelfari have some fun, fantastic features that LT lacks, but with Tim and ‘The Powers That Be’ as responsive as they are, I would need a whole lot more time in my schedule before plugging into other booksites would be worth it.

Thingers (and others), this is my LAST POST before the end of the contest! I will be accepting comments through 9 pm Eastern Standard Time. After that the contest will close. Three winners will be announced tomorrow, Wednesday, June 4th.

Tuesday Thingers – My Library

May 27, 2008

“How many books do you have cataloged in your LibraryThing account? How do you decide what to include- everything you have, everything you’ve read- and are there things you leave off?”

After going through all of my books with a printed list of my library, I was finally able to eliminate the books I sold back to Half Price Books and have come up with 679 books in my LibraryThing Library.  This includes books I own, books I want, a small number of books I have borrowed, and books I have gotten rid of on BookMooch.

In the beginning I used LibraryThing solely to catalog my books.  Not so much because I was a catalog purist, but primarily because that is what I thought it was for, nothing else.  Then I discovered ‘talk.’  With talk came endless recommendations, so I had to start putting wishlisted books in there, because I would never remember them all (134 right now).  Yes, it bothers me a little that it screws up my connections, etc., but I am far too lazy to switch back and forth between accounts to make a separate wishlist account. 

Then I got my first Early Reviewer book.  It was TERRIBLE.  Terrible.  I got rid of it as soon as someone agreed to take it off of my hands.  However, I couldn’t remove it from my library, otherwise my review would disappear, thus harming my chances for future ER books. Thus I started leaving some books in my library that I did not plan on keeping, in order to leave reviews and ratings on LibraryThing.  I’ve also been leaving in my library books placed on BookMooch, so that I can keep track there as well of what I am having mooched.

Someday, maybe, we will get collections, and then I can keep all of these things separated out. 

Whether or not you use LibraryThing, how do you organize YOUR books?


Library Thing Tuesday – Intros

May 13, 2008

The Early Reviewers group on LibraryThing decided a week or so ago that we all need to share our book blogs with one another. From that decision, an idea was formed to do a once-per-week blogging circle/prompt along the lines of Booking Through Thursday.

Our goal today is simply to introduce ourselves and our blogs. Those that have been reading for awhile, please bear with me. Who knows, perhaps you’ll even learn something new.

I have been on LibraryThing for approximately a year, but did not get active in the community until discovering Early Reviewers sometime in February. The community there, as well as The Literate Housewife’s blog, inspired me to begin my own book blog to post my reviews, and perhaps be sent some books for review. Now I’m totally addicted to my blog, and to reviewing. This is something like post 74 in about 2.5 months, so close to a post a day on average (P.S. I’ll be having a big contest for post 100, although I haven’t decided whether to start or end it on post 100). I would love to someday be a professional reviewer. This blog is pretty much solely about books but NOT about my life in general, except as it relates to books (for example: Reading While Remodeling or Book Promiscuity).

I read a good deal of fiction, primarily historical fiction, but I do love good non-genre fiction, as well as non-fiction and memoir. At this time I have not been reading much young adult literature or science fiction, but I have read them in the past and am hoping to get back into them (I’m killing two birds with one stone this summer by being part of J. Scott Savage’s blog tour). I am currently attempting to “Read Around the World,” although my progress is fairly slow.

The books I review are those from my shelves, from LibraryThing Early Reviewers, from ReaderViews, Connecting Books with the Online World, Literary Ventures Fund, and authors’ blog tours. Now if someone would just decide to pay me to do this (besides in free books, which is great in itself), so that I could sit at home all day and read!

By the way, all of my reviews are posted on LibraryThing as well. However, I post only a partial review there – although enough that LT readers would not be confused – and post a link back to my site for people to get the entire review.

Top 106 Unread Books on LibraryThing

May 9, 2008

This meme has been going around a bunch of book blogs, so I thought I would partake for two reasons

  1. I love LibraryThing
  2. I’m not very far into any of the books in my theme read (since I’m reading them simultaneously), so I don’t have reviews to post.

Below are listed the top 106 books tagged ‘unread’ on LibraryThing (or at least these were once the top 106).  The rules for marking them are:

Asterisk – I own the book
Bold – I’ve read the book
Italics – I’ve started the book
Stricken – I hated the book
Underline – on my current TBR list

Jonathan Strange & M. Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
*One hundred years of solitude
*Wuthering Heights
*The Silmarillion (Brian owns it, but it is at my house)
Life of Pi: a novel
The Name of the Rose
Don Quixote
Moby Dick
Madame Bovary
*The Odyssey
*Pride and Prejudice (owned/read as an audio book)
Jane Eyre
*A Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov
*Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
*The Time Traveler’s Wife
The Iliad
The Blind Assassin
*The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations
American Gods
*A heartbreaking work of staggering genius
Atlas shrugged
*Reading Lolita in Tehran
Memoirs of a Geisha
*Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West
The Canterbury Tales
(or at least some of it in school)
*The Historian
A portrait of the artist as a young man
Love in the time of cholera
*Brave new world
The Fountainhead
Foucault’s Pendulum
The Count of Monte Cristo
*Dracula (currently being read for my theme read)
A clockwork orange
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King
*The Grapes of Wrath
*The Poisonwood Bible
*Angels & Demons
The Inferno
The Satanic Verses
*Sense and sensibility (owned on audio)
The Picture of Dorian Gray
*Mansfield Park (owned on audio)
*One flew over the cuckoo’s nest
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Oliver Twist
Gulliver’s Travels
Les misérables
*The Corrections
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
*The curious incident of the dog in the night-time
The Prince
*The Sound and the Fury
Angela’s Ashes
The God of Small Things
*A people’s history of the United States : 1492-present
A confederacy of dunces
A Short History of Nearly Everything
The unbearable lightness of being
*The Scarlet Letter
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake : a novel
*Collapse : how societies choose to fail or succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion
*Persuasion (owned as audio)
*Northanger Abbey (owned as audio)
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
The Aeneid
Watership Down
Gravity’s Rainbow
*The Hobbit
*In Cold Blood
White teeth
Treasure Island
David Copperfield
*The Three Musketeers

So I own 37

I’ve read 32

I’ve started 2 (plus one that is a re-read)

I’ve hated 3

And 18 are on my TBR list
How do you fare against the 106?

U.S. History Early Reviewer Morning: The Civil War, FDR

April 21, 2008

My April ER book arrived this morning (actually, our wonderful mailman Irving left it in our mail slot on Saturday, but I got it today).  The book is called “Two Brothers: One North, One South” and is historical fiction about the Civil War, the story is narrated by Walt Whitman by David H. Jones.  It is not actually an ARC, but is a very pretty hardback book that arrived in wonderful condition, personally autographed by the author, with two lovely book marks inside (both with information about the book).  I will have to decide what sort of historical fiction I’m in the mood for next: this, or a story of Juana la Loca.

Funnily enough, this same morning that I received my April U.S. historical fiction ER book, I saw a story in the New York Times about my March bonus batch U.S. history ER book.  This article discusses Joseph Persico’s new book Franklin and Lucy, the research therein, and the Roosevelt’s parallels to the Clintons.  Read my review of the book here.


April 17, 2008

I have started to get a fair number of books that need to be read (and usually reviewed) at or by a certain time. I’m currently on my 4th consecutive win of Early Reviewer books, I’m beginning reviewing on ReaderViews, I’m taking part in a few theme reads on LibraryThing, I’m getting an ARC from the Barnes and Nobles First Look Book Club, I keep trying to receive Harper Collins First Look books, I’m part of a blog tour, and I’ve got my book club.

For each of these things (and hopefully more in the future!) there is some sort of deadline. Obviously I’m not going to be kicked out of book club or the theme reads if my book isn’t done on time, but not finishing and reviewing/discussing the other books on time would not be conducive to receiving more books.

I was afraid that I was just going to simply forget to read a book in its allotted time, so I’ve decided to schedule out (some of) my TBR time with the books that need to be read at a certain time, using the handy-dandy Google Calendar. The link to my TBR Calendar can also be found on the right-hand side of my page under “Devourer’s Stuff”. As long as I’m doing this, I might as well include the other books I read that didn’t HAVE to be read, so I will add other books as I read them and edit what I read to reflect the correct dates. Books that ‘had’ to be read will be indicated with asterisks.

Feel free to check out my calendar!

Book Mooching

April 17, 2008

BookMooch banenr

Some time ago I joined BookMooch (BM).  Unfortunately, at the time all of my books were in boxes, so I couldn’t exactly list any.  All of my books are now on shelves, but they still aren’t organized, which means I haven’t pulled any out to list on BM either.  I did, however, upload my “WANT” list from LibraryThing over to BM, so that when I do start listing books and having them mooched I will already know what books I want are available.  Perhaps this weekend I can redo my shelves and list some books!


Edited to Add: I did list 10 books tonight.  Mostly Jodi Picoult (I guess I’m really over her now) and a few others.  My name on bookmooch is the same as here: Devourerofbooks.

Venetian Mask – Book Review

April 16, 2008

Venetian Mask cover LT Early Reviewer Badge The Venetian Mask was my March Early Reviewer book from LibraryThing. The book, originally published in the early 1990s, has been reprinted and rereleased by Three Rivers Press.

This is the story of Marietta and Elena, two orphaned girls who meet at the Ospedale della Pieta, essentially a Venetian orphanage/music school. Circumstance finds the girls in their 20s and married Venice’s version of the Montagues and the Capulets: the Ceranos and the Torrisis, between whom was vendetta.

Perhaps the best developed characters in the novel were the Pieta and late 18th-century Venice. The Pieta was strict and watchful, but also kind in offering its girls a home and a future. Venice was just the opposite: secretive and debauched, violent, corrupt, and ruthless. Yet Venice was also alluring, freeing, and very attractive to the girls shut away in the strictures of the Pieta.

Unfortunately, Marietta and Elena, not to mention their friends Adrianna and Bianca, were not nearly as well developed as the Pieta and Venice. They are relatively shallow characters with valid but not complex motives for their actions.

To me, the most enjoyable part of the story was not the oft-mindless plot, but the glimpses of life in 18th-century Venice. For example, I had never heard of the completely different sort of orphanage that was the Pieta, nor did I know about the placing of denunciations in the Lion’s Mouth. Also quite interesting was the culture of mask wearing and secrecy of Venice. Lastly I learned of the significance to Venice of the Napoleonic Wars, which I did not previous know.

The storyline of this book is not fantastic, but it does seem that Ms. Laker did her research into the life and culture of Venice and, for that, the book was enjoyable.

Buy this book on Amazon: The Venetian Mask: A Novel

Franklin Roosevelt ARC

April 1, 2008

Early Review badgeI don’t think that I shared the joy that I actually was chosen for two LibraryThing Early Reviewer books. Random House offered LibraryThing a bonus batch in March and I was chosen for Franklin and Lucy: President Roosevelt, Mrs. Rutherfurd, and the Other Remarkable Women in His Life in addition to The Venetian Mask that I ‘won’ in the regular batch. Well, the Venetian Mask still hasn’t shown up for me (or anyone else, as far as I can tell), but Franklin and Lucy was brought to me today by my buddy, the UPS guy who delivers to our office.

I suppose that this means I will be reading Franklin and Lucy first, unless perhaps my other Early Reviewer book comes with our fantastic mailman Irving at noon (why do we have such great mail delivery men at my office?), in which case I might go ahead and read it first. I only got through the first (very short) chapter in The Handmaid’s Tale, so I guess Margaret Atwood is going to have to get shifted back…

Let me just finish by saying that Brian is VERY EXCITED for our budget that I am getting these free books. In addition to these two LibraryThing Early Reviewer books, I am lucky enough to have two other LibraryThing members sending me books this week that they had previously been given for review, plus I’m entering everywhere I can around the ‘net to win more books. I’m not sure if he is correct in thinking that these books will really impede my buying habit, but time will tell.
Edited to add: Unfortunately my dear friend Irving did not bring The Venetian Mask today, so I suppose it will be Franklin and Lucy at lunch!