Books are easily one of the most popular and sought-after pastimes in all of human civilization. Granted, paper and hardback books may, in future, be transformed into digital format and will simply be words on a screen, but I still believe there’s nothing better than picking up a book in your book shop and getting lost in it. The feel of your fingers on the pages, the touch of the cover in your hands, even the smell is to die for! But, as an avid book reader, it’s easy to run out of ideas on what to read next.
Fortunately, there is a wide variety of book review websites available that can help you to discover your new favourite novel or story. If you’re wondering where to turn to next and nothing is jumping out at you from the shelves, here is a list of some of the best book reviews sites on the Internet, giving you a taste of what the world of literature has to offer.
BookBrowse labels itself as the “one-stop resource for books.” BookBrowse is an extremely popular book review site where can search for new books to your heart’s content. There’s a dedicated section for finding new books that you haven’t read, and there are even online book clubs so you can discuss your current favourites with other like-minded fans.
BookReporter: If you’re looking for quick reviews so you can get a rough opinion on a book you’re interested in, Book Reporter is the website for you. The reviews average out around 500 words long, meaning you get everything you need on the book, without giving too much away, in a matter of minutes. There’s also a tonne of built-in forums and discussion groups for getting some great new reader inspirations.
AllReaders.com: The website itself may look dated, but All Readers is easily one of the most comprehensive book databases available on the Internet. There’s a heavily customizable search engine bar so you can find exactly what kind of books you are after, and the reviews are short and easy to read, giving you all the information you need before picking up a new classic.
The New York Times: One of America’s leading media publications, the New York Times book review section is as comprehensive as it gets. The reviews on books can easily reach 1,000 words long, but the reviewers, opinions and concepts the writers introduce are unlike anything you’d find elsewhere. If you’re after some seriously thought-provoking content and reviews that are worth reading for their own sake, not just to learn if a book is any good or not, The New York Times is the place for you.
Library Thing: With over 2 million active users, it’s safe to say that Library Thing is one of the most popular book review sites on the Internet. The soul of this website comes from its user interaction. There are dedicated chat rooms, forums and discussion rooms to talk with other like-minded readers, enabling you to discuss concepts and ideas as well as exploring new ideas on what you could read next.
BookPage: If you’re in need of a book review site that’s modern, up-to-date and easy to navigate, Book Page has got you covered. With an extensive range of reviews, trending lists, author interviews and opinion columns, Book Page, at its core, is an online newspaper publication specifically made with books and readers in mind.
Jennifer Scott is a business developer who works in different areas of education, technology, security and various types of online marketing. Prior to business developing, Jennifer was a consultant at Deloitte, and managed security services and developed of a wide range of security solutions.
Of course, there are many other excellent book sites (Goodreads comes to mind) and especially for Canadians, there’s Quick Brown Fox. Read book reviews on Quick Brown Fox here (and scroll down). Check out assorted other reviews here (and scroll down). And of course many of the personal essays published on Quick Brown Fox are about a favourite book or more generally about reading or writing – check them out here (and scroll down).
Note that Quick Brown Fox always welcomes your essays about a favourite book or your experience of reading or writing. Read a few essays on the blog to get a taste of what other writers have done, write your own, and submit it to me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’d like to try your hand at writing a book review (or any kind of review), they’re always welcome, too. You can read an essay about how to write a book review here and see guidelines about submitting reviews of any kind to Quick Brown Fox here. ~Brian
See Brian Henry’s schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.