I don’t know when it happened for me, but I got to a point in life where I truly started to enjoy reading. Maybe it was after I got done with grad school and I actually had time to read. I’ll admit that I don’t read as often as I would like, and now that I am back in school and a father to a two year old, that time has shrunk even further. But, that still hasn’t stopped me from finding books that I want to get to “someday”, as I know I will get to them eventually.
A year or so ago, I started to experiment with different ways that I could save book titiles that I was interested in reading so that when I did have some time, I could actually find a book to read. I defaulted to Evernote since I practically use it for just about everything these days, but about a month ago, I stumbled upon a web app called Slice Bookshelf. To be perfectly honest, the only reason why I even found it was the fact that I had been using Slice for other reasons. If you are unfamiliar with Slice, I did a review on their app a little while back and I still use it till this day. So, when I saw that they had a book saving app, I knew I had to try it out to see if it was worth it.
When you sign up for Slice Bookshelf, similar to the actual Slice app, it scans your email for past book purchases so that you can immediately add them to your bookshelf. There are a few preset shelves for you that you can put books on, or you can create you own. Once you are done adding books that you purchased, there are a variety of other things you can now do within the app itself.
Discovering and Interacting
The one thing that I could appreciate about Slice Bookshelf is that it is so much more than just a place to add your own books, but a place to discover other amazing ones that are out there. The best way to discover new material is to follow other people and there are a couple of ways to do this. Slice has set up a handful of famous people and organizations to curate their own list of books and you can also invite your Facebook friends to share theirs as well. Obviously the more people you follow the more you get to choose from.
As you are perusing what other people have added to Bookshelf, you can look at them individually by clicking on one and then you can add it to one of your shelves. You can also rate the book if you have already read it, share it with your friends on Facebook, or actually buy it through Amazon. You also have the ability to write a review about the book or start a discussion about it with others.
There were two things that intrigued me about Slice Bookshelf, with the first being that it is a great place to add your own books and to discover other ones. I needed a place where I could jot down titles that I was interested in reading and this app did this, but it also let me save books that I have read and organized them the way that I want to. Another thing that interested me was the social aspect of it, where I could follow other people and see what they were reading so that I could get more ideas. I also liked how I could interact with others, which could come in handy if you want to know more about a book before you decide to buy it.
Slice was able to take these two components and put them together and come out with a very good looking and easy to use app for book lovers. I really liked that it was kind of like a one stop shop for me as a place where I could add books for later, review ones I have read, interact with others, and even buy one if I wanted. It really did it all for me, other than being able to read inside the app. Speaking of reading, I think they can tap into this market and possibly give the user the ability to read a book on their site, maybe share quotes or highlights as well. They could also come out with a tablet reading app, similar to the Kindle or iBooks, where you could read something there.
Although Slice labels their app as in beta, I honestly believe it is ready for prime time as I couldn’t find anything wrong with it and it worked smoothly for me. In order to use the app, you have to be willing to let them scan your email as well as log in with Facebook. That will detract some people, but hopefully they figure out other ways for this as well. I would love to see them continue to partner with more publishers or other well known organizations and people to share their books as I think this would only attract more users.
If you are a book worm, or just want a place to find a good read, you definitely have to go and check out Slice Bookshelf and start creating your own collection of books.
Add books to read, find good ones for later, and interact with other book lovers using Slice Bookshelf.8
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