Goodreads Blog
blog posts (showing 321-330 of 447)
Alas, poor George! We knew him ... or did we?
Posted by Ken-ichi on January 13, 2009 216786

President George W. Bush has been called many things over the past 8 years, but "bookworm" definitely wasn't on my shortlist of monikers. Yet behold! None other than champion secret-leaker Karl Rove has spilled the beans (again): our president not only reads, but he reads competitively, from Team of Rivals to Next, Prisoner Without a Name, Cell Without a Number to Ana's Story. Even *gasp* The Holy Bible! I mean, we all know he's read "My Pet Goat", but the The Stranger?!

Given this demonstrated love for the printed (if not spoken) word, one can only imagine what literary heights he'll be scaling now that he has all this free time! So I'd like to make a few humble suggestions:

I'm sure you all can add to this list. Leave some comments!
API Update: Add Reviews Using OAuth
Posted by Ben on January 09, 2009 351833

We've just added support for OAuth in our API!

With it comes a new method allowing you to build applications that add reviews on behalf of members. You can read more about using OAuth with our API in the documentation.

Register your app to get started. We'd love to hear what you're building — join the developers group and let people know.
Plaxo added Goodreads as a feed source
Posted by Otis on January 09, 2009 1

We're pleased to announce that Plaxo has added Goodreads as a feed source on their Plaxo Pulse update stream. This will be a great way for all you Plaxo members to share your Goodreads book reviews with your Plaxo friends!

Check out Plaxo's announcement for more details.

Site slowness
Posted by Michael on January 08, 2009 73

The goodreads servers are currently having some networking problems. Unfortunately it's really slowing down page loads. Out host has a status page up.

We're terribly sorry!

-The goodreads team

Calling all Goodreads Sci Fi and Fantasy authors!
Posted by Otis on January 07, 2009 1

In March and April the Sci Fi and Fantasy Book Club will be picking their reading selection from Goodreads Authors! The group has over 1,000 members so this is a great opportunity for any Sci Fi or Fantasy writer.

To submit suggestions for SciFi (March):

To submit suggestions for Fantasy books (April):

Here's what they're reading now:
Wizards First Rule

A Fire Upon The Deep
new and improved videos
Posted by Otis on January 04, 2009 1

Some members have asked why a book site would need videos, but once you browse some of the amazing footage of authors speaking about and reading their books, you'll agree its a great feature. Just check out the priceless footage of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle below!

Previously we allowed YouTube videos to be embedded on author pages, however now if you browse the videos page for an author you'll see we are automatically pulling in search results from YouTube for that author. We also greatly improved the display of videos and the explore videos pages.

Here are some of more popular videos:

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Stephenie Meyer

Neil Gaiman

J.K. Rowling

View all popular videos »
bookclubs just got even better!
Posted by Otis on December 22, 2008 1

We just launched a great new feature for bookclubs: structure for easily showing off what a group is currently, has read, and is going to read.

Bookclubs have always had a 'currently-reading' shelf, but now they can add start and finish dates, a blurb of text about why they picked it, who the discussion leader is, and link to the discussion folder. These changes allowed us to change the group page to show more exactly what the group is reading, with a neat "upcoming" section. Similarly, the books the group has read now shows the date the group read them.

There are over 9,000 groups on Goodreads now, and 1,600 of them have the word book club in their title or description. One of them, the Glens Falls (NY) Online Book Discussion Group, even got mentioned in the news recently!

For example, here's what the Sci Fi and Fantasy Bookclub is currently reading:

And here's what the Constant Reader group is reading:

December Newsletter and Holiday Gift Guide!
Posted by Elizabeth on December 04, 2008 5

Please check out our Newsletter and Gift Guide!

This month we interviewed Malcolm Gladwell, John Grogan and Dennis Lehane for our monthly newsletter, all interesting and influential authors in their own right. Goodreads member Andrew Lundwall contributed his poem "unscrew the moon".

We also had a blast putting together the Gift Guide for our users. Some fun ideas include book lover's pajamas, a quirky book light shaped like a novel, and a sensuous leather-bound journal. We took care to pick gifts at a variety of prices.

Hope you all have a happy December!
Goodreads hits 5,000 authors
Posted by Otis on December 01, 2008 1

We hit a fun benchmark over the holiday - 5,000 authors who have signed up for our Author Program!

The Author Program has grown quickly ever since we noticed lots of real authors creating profiles on the site, and gave them the ability to take control of their author profile.

We have been honored to have lots of popular authors sign up. Authors like Neil Gaiman, Paulo Coelho, Jennifer Weiner, Sarah Dessen, Michael Connelly, Chris Bohjalian, and many more have joined and been using Goodreads to connect to their fans. It's also a lot of fun to see what they are reading - just the other day I saw a book review from Neil Gaiman in my friend updates!

But the majority of the the 5,000 authors are of course newer, self-published, smaller authors - and we have been thrilled to give them the tools to start building a following for their books.

About the Goodreads Author program:
Goodreads has a new look!
Posted by Otis on November 26, 2008 1

Goodreads 2.0 is here! We're very excited to release a new design to you all tonight. We've been testing the new design for the past week and are really excited about it.

The redesign is focused on improving site usability and navigation. It contains only a few new features, but we have moved a number of things around to make them easier to find and use.

Key aspects of the redesign are:
* The site is wider (960px)!
* New header navigation that uses dropdowns to allow faster access to key areas of the site.
* The row of books in the header moved from hanging upside down to being right side up. Our designer pointed out that before it looked as though they were about to fall out of the sky! :)
* New "explore books" page that is a jumping off point to all explore books pages (listopia, popular books, most read books, etc)
* The grey boxes used all over the site have been replaced with a clean rounded brown header. This allows for less visual clutter and more space for content.
* The elements on the book page have been rearranged a bit to make the content people use the most more prominent.
* The wider site allowed us to move the bookshelves on the 'my books' page to a narrow column on the left, which really cleaned up the look & feel of that page - especially for those of us (like me) who have a lot of shelves.

We also launch one fairly significant new feature - a new comment digest system! This allows members to follow a discussion in a group instantly, daily, or weekly. Previously we just had daily. You can also now follow any discussion anywhere on the site, where previously only groups and review comments had email notifications. We expect this to be a significant improvement in letting members easily follow the discussions they care about!

Please check it out and give us your feedback, and help us nail any remaining bugs!