Reading books is a solitary activity and can therefore dissuade some sociable people from engaging in it. Book clubs have long served as a way to enjoy and explore books with others, but it can nonetheless be difficult to find others who have the time to talk and share your exact interests. With the emergence of the internet, services like Goodreads sprung up to cater to those searching for book-oriented communities. With more than 30 million users, Goodreads has become basically the gold standard in this market, but that does not mean that new players cannot emerge. Indeed, from Poznan, Poland, we have Booklikes, a service aiming to become “a cross between Tumblr and Goodreads”.
Once you have created an account on the Booklikes site, you are offered a tutorial of the site, so there is no need to worry about finding things. Once inside, users will find that the service is quite focused on the “social” aspect. You can manage your own virtual bookshelf, reading list or find interesting recommendations from your friends or other prominent users (certain users, such as authors or publishers, can become “verified” on the service).
There are also reading groups, a section for giveaways, or daily deals for puchasing books. However, the real centerpiece of the service is your personal blog, at which you can opine on basically anything. And it does not need to just include boring text, either, as users are free to share photos and videos in order to spice up your commentary.
You don’t need to be an English speaker to use Booklikes, as several months ago they incorporated books in German, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian, Polish, and Dutch into the service. The company’s community manager tells me that most of their users come from the United States and other English-speaking countries, but they have also made inroads in places like Germany, France, Spain, Poland, India, and more.