Monday, August 15, 2011

Worth a Look: LibraryThing

In case you haven’t heard of the website LibraryThing, let me introduce you to a fantastic resource for all of us book lovers. LibraryThing is essentially a place to catalog all your books online, discuss them if you’d like, and share reading suggestions. If you are like me, you have 100’s of beloved books scattered across your home, not even sure what books you have anymore. LibraryThing brings some semblance of order to them. Simply enter each book using it’s ISBN number, title, or author, and LibraryThing will automatically search the catalogs of nearly a 1000 libraries and bookstores around the world (including the Library of Congress and Amazon) to fill in every piece of information you could possibly want to know about that book—title, authors, subjects, first lines, series’, reviews, cover images, you name it. It will even assign Dewey Decimal System numbers to your books if you want to get all librarian on them.

There are more features than we can possible mention here, but another great use for LibraryThing is to gather ideas for your next read. Once you have a few books catalogued, LibraryThing uses recommendations from its 1.3 million users to give you reading suggestions based on the books in your library.

To that end, the Mukwonago Community Library has started its own LibraryThing “Catalog of Recommendations” (you can also find it by searching LibraryThing for “Mukwonago library”). In this catalog you will find a completely random assortment of books--for adults, teens, and children--that we, for whatever reason, really like and think you might too. So check it out, browse around, and follow some links. There’s no telling what great book you might find.