Today, I’m coming to you from self-isolation (my third round!). I have no symptoms of COVID, but a bubble at the school I was working at closed and I was among the staff told to self-isolate, so here we are. The plus side? It means I have more time to get ahead of myself with reading and blogging!
Recently, Readerly had a pretty big update, so I wanted to share with you all some of the new features and my thoughts on Readerly. If you’re new to Readerly, it’s a mobile app (not a website) that acts as a sort of GoodReads/Instagram/Twitter cross. Obviously, it’s book focused, and also community focused, which makes it similar to GoodReads. Like Instagram, it’s very graphic. To post a ‘review’ to Readerly, you have the chance to create a small slideshow, with different slides for topics such as characters, quotes, trigger tags, ‘similar to…’ and genre tags. And finally, like Twitter, it’s brief. Instead of reviews, there are Gists, which are limited by character. I don’t actually find this as restrictive as I did on BookSloth, as you can pad out your Gist with the additional slides types offered, and you can add a link to a blog or GoodReads review. For more detail about the basics of Readerly, I did a post not so long ago talking through its original functions. Today, we’re talking about the latest updates!
As the app is new, there’s a lot of updates happening all the time. The main elements I want to talk about today are the GoodReads import, Takes, and the new-look profile page. Firstly, the GoodReads import. Super simple, does exactly what you’d expect it to. You can find this at the bottom of your profile page. Click on ‘Import Reading History’, then select how you want your GoodReads stars to match up to Readerly’s rating system, then log into GoodReads and allow the import to run! I found it a really quick and easy process, and it only took Readerly a few minutes to populate with all the imported books from my GoodReads.
Next, Takes! Takes offer an opportunity for a more social approach than Gists. While Gists cannot be replied to or commented on (though they can be interacted with), Takes can be replied to, and discussions can be started. Takes can only be viewed by other readers who have marked the book as read, so be as spoiler-y as you like with them! I’m not sure if there’s a limit on how long a Take can be (if there is, I haven’t hit it yet!), so you can go a bit more in-depth with your thoughts here. The only issue I’ve found with Takes is that there just… aren’t many yet! Of all the books I’ve marked as ‘read’, there are only around 10 takes connected to those books, which is a shame, but as more people get the update and start using the feature, and as more people join the app, hopefully this section will improve.
Finally, the new profile pages. If you like The StoryGraph because of its graphs, well, you’ll love this. The new-look profile pages feature links to your Gists, your follower/following stats, your read books, how many people your Gists helped discover a new book, and your recent favourites. As if that wasn’t enough, there’s also, brace for it, reading stats! There’s a genre word cloud to show your most read genres, a pie chart to show what forms/age groups you read more of (it’s split into Fiction, Non-fiction, Drama, Poetry and also differentiates between Adult and YA), and a little chart that shows you which decades are your most-read by way of a colour map. Admittedly, there aren’t as many graphs as StoryGraph has, but I really like the way Readerly have chosen to integrate these stats. They’re simple, visual, and easy to locate and understand. I quite like the simplicity to them and, for the most part, they give me all the data I’m really interested in regarding my reading habits.
All these new updates have really enhanced Readerly, and the experience on the app now is even better than it was before. If you’re looking for a GoodReads alternative that keeps the social aspect alive, then I really do think that this is a great app. If you’d like access to Readerly, please drop me a DM on Twitter or Instagram, and I can send you one of my invite codes! If you use Readerly already, I’d love to know what you think about it down in the comments!