Thursday, May 29, 2008

Social Networking for Book Nerds

Does you library live in cyberspace too?

Hermione Buckland-Hoby on The Guardian blog looks at the rise of the virtual bookshelf and takes a look at social networking sites for the literati.

I have a bookshelf up on my Facebook profile, and it's nice to see what others are reading too.

I am as in love with LibraryThing as ever, not so much for social networking (most interactions don't get much further than "Hi! Nice library!") but because it really does help me to organise my ever-growing collection. Also, they look so pretty when they flash up in the sidebar of the blog, and it's good that I am reminded from time to time of the titles I haven't got round to yet!

(I've added too more widgets there so as well as random books from my library, you can see my most recent additions and a selection of the books I've tagged "Malaysian".)

If you live nearby and can promise to return what you borrow within a reasonable time frame and in good condition, then you are welcome to borrow. (And if you don't return them, I can always put your wanted poster on this blog!)

I now have 1729 books listed though I keep finding books on my shelves I've accidentally omitted ... and still can't bring myself to add Abu's yellowing thrillers or my teaching books. The main categories are fiction (801), non-fiction (658), novel (619), british (399), american (203), malaysian (186), short stories (130), history (106), travel (103), poetry (99).

I've been acquiring books apace (28 so far this month!) many of them bought cheaply from warehouse sales and discount bookshops. (Was at the Payless Sale last weekend and BookXcess yesterday.) Many others have been given to me - many as review copies given by authors, bookshops and distributors. (One of the perks of blogging about books.)

I've also managed (thanks to AbeBooks) to track down a couple of English translations of Malay novels (which should never have gone out of print in the first place) : I've now got Harry Aveling's translation of A. Samad Said's Salina which I want to read side by side with the original, and Adibah Amin's No Harvest but a Thorn (a translation of Ranjau Sepanjang Jalan).

I will eventually bequeath my library to the nation ... though by the time I shuffle off this mortal coil you will probably all be reading ebooks anyway - or maybe you will have devices fitted into your brain that download all the content of all the books ever published directly into your brain.


Web Sutera said...

A. Samad Said's first book I bought & read (yes Sharon, I read it!)) is Salina (Bahasa Melayu version). I keep it at my bookshelf even though its cover already torn.

Amir said...

I just managed to catalogue 308 books so far. It's fun to add books to the site, too.

Isn't 'book nerd' a redundancy? Like saying 'sports jock.'


bibliobibuli said...

web sutera - and i will read it too!

amir - will go take a stroll round your library. it is fun, isn't it. i enjoy entering books.

you have a lot more to go?

The Rhymeweaver said...

"Many others have been given to me - many as review copies given by authors, bookshops and distributors. (One of the perks of blogging about books.)"

Hi, I wonder if you'd be interested to review a hip hop CD based on classic literature? I'm in the process of recording it now and it'll be released late 2008. It's just an amateur effort though, limited distribution and definitely not commercial. I reckon it would be a good idea to get an opinion from a bibliophile as well as hip hop heads. I'll give you a free copy when it drops. You can click here for more details.

The Rhymeweaver

Mikeay said...

Librarything is a great site coz it has out of print books, but to connect with my friends' bookshelves, so I use, like its news feed.

bibliobibuli said...

and presumably is paying you to post this comment on blogs? that's what happened with shelfari.

bluskyes said...

hi Sharon
accidentally stumbled upon your blog and am so glad I did!!! I'm an avid reader - thanks to my mum, who's worse than me!! - and really enjoying all the 2nd hand books so easily available here in London!! Am just piling up books by the dozen and feeling so guilty that I have a huge pile still unread...nice to see that it's quite 'normal' :-)
I love the idea of a library as well, in fact, that's my retirement plan for sure - to set up my own library!! Nice to 'meet' you - I'll definitely drop by again sometime!

bibliobibuli said...

thanks so much for dropping by, and hope you come by regularly now you know your way here. how i envy you being able to poke around in the second-hand bookshops in london!

mizranee said...

Hello! I would like to suggest another literary social networking site at if you have not visited it already.