Guest Post (& Giveaway): Sandy Williams, author of The Shattered Dark

5 Things I Adore About Goodreads

-Sandy Williams

I’ll admit it. I’m a Goodreads addict. I compulsively check the site, read all my reviews – yes, even the negative ones – and stalk my friends’ updates. I love Goodreads! As a reader, I peruse the reviews to make sure a book is something I might like. As a writer, I feel like I did back in high school and college, when I turned in a paper and received feedback from a teacher or professor. Did I pass the test? What can I improve on? What did I do well? (Um, yeah, I was a total nerd in school!)

But Goodreads has a few features aside from just the reviews that makes it so much better than other review sites. Below are the 5 things I adore most about this site.

1. “Liking” reviews: I get an email notification every time someone likes one of my reviews. I love this! Not only does it tell me that other people sometimes read my reviews, but they enjoyed something about the review. Considering that most of my reviews are blathering lovefests, I’m sure many of the likes I get are because other people just like the book I reviewed but still, I get happy when I get those email notifications. As of today, my most liked review is of Amanda Bonilla’s SHAEDES OF GRAY.

2. Status Updates: I was on Goodreads for years before I noticed the tiny “Status Updates” link at the top right of my home screen. When people read books, they sometimes update their status, noting that they’re on page 162 or 52%. Sometimes, when they make these updates, they even add comments. I love this so much! I check it nearly every day because it’s pretty damn awesome to see when a book moves someone enough (either in good ways or bad) to comment. Occasionally, readers will write things like, “Noooooooo!” and when I look at the page or percentage, I can guess what just happened in the book. A recent example from THE SHATTERED DARK: at a little over 50%, someone wrote “Woah, didn’t see that coming!” I grinned because I knew what the surprise was.

3. Quotes: Readers can add their favorite quotes to Goodreads! This is another one of my favorite features. When you click on a book’s profile, the list of quotes shows up in the right sidebar. Even if a reader doesn’t add one herself, she can click on one someone’s already added and “like” it. In THE SHADOW READER, the *quotes people have liked are the quotes that I loved so much when writing this book. Writing is such an isolated endeavor; I never know if the scenes and words that move me will move others, but the quotes section of Goodreads is proof that they do!

4. Comments on reviews: This feature is similar to the status updates, but the comments are separate from them, and usually occurs after someone finishes and rates a book. Oftentimes, I’ll get a comment from someone saying they also loved the book or that they now want to give the book a try. I love that! Some Goodreads users get into long, thoughtful discussions on what they loved and hated about books, and I think it’s great. I won’t comment negatively about a book, but I think it’s fine for others to do so. Yes, this can get out of hand, but for the most part, people are just talking passionately about books. There’s something awesome about that. My most commented on review? My MOCKINGJAY review.

5. My shelf: I love having one place to go to see all my favorite books! Quickly glancing through my online bookshelf always puts a smile on my face. Every so often, I read the reviews I wrote, reminding myself of what I liked about a book. I write some sort of review for every book I put on Goodreads (I only put up books I’d recommend to others). Most of those reviews are, like I said, blabbering lovefests – nothing like the awesome, more professional reviews on this blog and others! – but they’re great for taking me back to that happy moment when I finished reading a great story.

Goodreads is one of my favorite and most frequented sites. The people who designed it have done almost everything right – they’ve made it a community!

Are you on Goodreads? If so, what’s your favorite part of it?
Keep up with Sandy: Website | Twitter

Sandy Williams

Sandy graduated from TexasA&MUniversitywith a double major in political science and history. She thought about attending law school. Fortunately, before handing over her life’s savings, she realized case studies weren’t nearly as interesting as novels and decided to get an MA in Library Science instead. She worked as a librarian until her husband whisked her off to Londonon an extended business trip. She’s now back home in Texas, writing full-time, raising newborn twin boys, and squeezing in time to play geeky board and card games like Settlers of Catan, Dominion, and Runebound.

1. You MUST fill out the form below
2. Giveaway is for 1 copy of The Shattered Dark by Sandy Williams to 1 winner.
3. Giveaway is open to US addresses only
4. Must include a valid email address with your entry (no need to leave it in the comments, just include it when you fill out the rafflecopter form)
5. You must enter on or before 11/15/12
6. Giveaway books courtesy of Ace
7. Please see my Giveaway Policy.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I like Goodreads, because I can keep track of books I’ve read and check out other people’s reviews. I don’t interact with others too much, but the few times I have, I’ve enjoyed it!

  2. Like Rebe, I like Goodreads because I also keep track of my reads via them. So that’s my favorite thing about Goodreads.
    I also like the giveaways. It helps me find new authors too.

  3. I wish other book sites where as organized as Good reads.

  4. I’m not much of a commentator, but I love being able to keep track of what books I’ve read and what others think about my favorites!

  5. Yay I already read the first one and now hopefully win the second book. 🙂 Thanks for the giveaway. 🙂

  6. Keeps me more organized.

  7. Ah Goodreads, what a fun place. Though I have beel slacking there recently with my move. Seems like there is always some new feature to discover. And I have found so many great books by picking up what some of my friends have raved about!

  8. Thanks for the giveaway. Please enter me in contest.

  9. You just reminded me I need to update the page count on the book I’m reading, because I’m sure everyone was waiting on the edge of their seat for the day I hit 138. Haha whatever, I think it’s kind of fun to do.

  10. Thanks for the post Sandy. I was not aware of status updates. I don’t know if I’ll use it but it sounds like a cool feature. Thanks for the giveaway too.

  11. Yes, I’m on Goodreads and I love it all. I love being able to look up a book I like or want to read, and checking to see all the other books that author has written. I like reading reviews and seeing which of my friends have read the book I’m reading and what they thought of it.

  12. I am terrible about updating it, but I think its a great site.

    Congrats on the new release!!

  13. I’m a fan of Goodreads, but, more in theory than practice. I don’t like using the phone app, cuz it takes too long with my 1-thumb typing. (And Goodreads is blocked on work comp, too. Boo.) Besides, it takes some of my limited reading time!

  14. I loathe Facebook and don’t care about Twitter but Goodreads is something I’m on a ton. As others have said, it’s a great way to keep track of the books I’ve read and I love finding new books and authors on it. I also love the fact that you can hide spoilers and find the reviews more helpful here than on other sites. And I love it when someone likes one of my reviews.

    One of my favorite things on the site is the stats tool in My Books. They just need to work on a fuzzy search ’cause their search capabilities suck!

  15. I absolutely love Goodreads. They host giveaways, I can keep track of my books and write reviews, and with a smartphone they have an AMAZINGLY useful barcode scanning app so that I can keep track of the books I’ve purchased but haven’t read yet so I don’t buy more than 1 copy (yes, I’ve accidentally done that before).

  16. I love Goodreads. I like the giveaways and I can keep track of what I’ve read and find new books to read. I also really like checking out the reviews; when I find a new book, the first thing I usually do is check out the reviews on Goodreads to see if it looks like it’ll be up my alley or not.

    I also like the fun things on the site, though I don’t do them too often, like the quizzes and voting on different lists. I love being able to have quotes on my page, too.

  17. Here is another one i will be reading!

  18. I am on Goodreads but have to get better at noting my books that I read. I like the reviews where I can look them up on a book I’m interested in.

  19. I love Goodreads. I like that you can see all the books by authors and read reviews. It’s also cool that they do the giveaways and you can become friends and follow different people and authors.

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