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Topic: keeping track of books you've read

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Subject: keeping track of books you've read
Date Posted: 9/7/2007 10:49 AM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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I was wondering how you all keep track of the books you've read.  I have a 3 ring binder that I have printed out my most fav authors and a list of all books they've written. i t is in alphabetical order and as I get a book I put a little check mark next to it.  that way if I come across a book I may like  I can look it up and see if I already have it.  now, I usually remember if Ihave read one before (unless it was a long time ago..sometimes those romances seem to blend together) but I have a lot of books that Ihaven't gotten around to read yet.  also it helps me see what book is next in a series.

am I a bit obsessive or do others do similar things?

Lori V. (cjsmom) - ,
Date Posted: 9/7/2007 11:39 AM ET
Member Since: 5/19/2006
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I never kept track untill this website. Now I add to my BIR list.  If I am browsing and see a book that I know I have read I add it.  I also listed everything I have at home on my TBR list. 


Date Posted: 9/7/2007 12:10 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Since I have so many books that I haven't read, I ended up duplicating a couple.  So a while back I made a list of all the books I have.  I put it on Word Perfect and alphabetical by author.  Then I loaded it onto my PDA. So if I'm at the used bookstore and something looks familiar I can look to see if I already have it in the tbr pile or if I might have read at some point.  A few years ago I started saving books I wanted to read on my Amazon wish list.  I typed that into WP as well and saved it to my PDA.  Then I can look for books on the list since I seem to go blank when I enter the store.

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 12:40 PM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2006
Posts: 5,498
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I just use the BIR list here but Mary I like your idea of putting a list into your PDA.  I can't tell you how many times I've looked at a Hannah Howell or Jude Deveraux book and wondered if I'd read it before.


Date Posted: 9/7/2007 1:25 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I can usually look at one and remember I've read it already. My problem is I have so many unread ones that I've bought a couple duplicates not realizing I already had one collecting dust. 

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 4:02 PM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2005
Posts: 960
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I keep a track of what I've read in an excel spreadsheet. I have it sorted by title, author, # of pages, date started and date finished. I also keep track of what I didn't finish as well.

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 6:33 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 12,137
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I count on my memory!  I rarely end up buying a duplicate book.  I'm pretty good at looking at newer books and spotting that publication date to figure out if it's really new or just a re-issue.  If it's a re-issue I know I can find it online cheaper.

The only places near me that sell used books sell them pretty cheap (50 cents or less) so I don't mind if I pick up a duplicate now and again.

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2006
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I used to write down the books I read with a short description, separated by author but then I'd forget to do it and then try go back and catch up with what I'd read. I finally just gave it up. I don't usually end up with duplicates. I do keep a notebook of books I'm looking for to help me out when I go to book sales or the UBS.

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 7:02 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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i've gotta come up with a system and I don't have any idea how to  use one of those pda thingies...or what kind to even buy! I keep gettin gduplicates and there are books in series i"m wanting to get to finish up the series and I end up getting 2 of one book and none of the other...sigh...and I have aLOT of books!

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 8:46 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Before I got the PDA I just put the list of books I wanted and a seperate list of books I have in Word Perfect.  Then I would print it out before I went to the book store. 

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 9:16 PM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2006
Posts: 1,086
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I count on my memory too. Once in a long while, I get a duplicate but I usually buy used  so it isn't too bad. I just  put them on my bookshelf here or pass along to a friend or neighbor. I had to keep extensive records for years when I worked and had my fill of that. Guess it all sounds like a lot of work and time to keep up with all the books that I have read over these many years, I would rather be reading them then recording them. That's more fun!

Date Posted: 9/7/2007 10:07 PM ET
Member Since: 7/14/2007
Posts: 8,942
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I just count on memory too.  I figure if I don't rememeber reading it, I'll probably enjoy re-reading it.  It's amazing how much was in the book that you forgot was there.

Date Posted: 9/8/2007 9:13 AM ET
Member Since: 12/8/2006
Posts: 29,785
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Jeanette, I have a binder, too! I keep an alphabetical list of all the author's I read with all of their books listed and highlight the ones I've read. It helps so much! I do update the lists twice a year for new releases as well, or tey to anyway. I started doing it in June and still haven't finished it. By the time I do, I'll have to start from A all over again:)

Date Posted: 9/8/2007 6:15 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2006
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Date Posted: 9/8/2007 7:07 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 12,137
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I always figure it's just way more work that I ever want to do to keep a list of stuff read and then keep updating it.  I barely have enough time to read the books, much less write them down.

Now, if I'm set on a particular author, I will find a list online and print it out of all their books so I can go thru my collection and check them off so I know what of theirs I don't have.

Date Posted: 9/8/2007 7:44 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2005
Posts: 396
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I use a text lest on my PDA for when I go to used bookstores and garage sales, but I also use the sites Bibliophil and LibraryThing to keep track of my collection, what I've read, what I want to read, etc.

Date Posted: 9/8/2007 9:04 PM ET
Member Since: 1/4/2006
Posts: 1,479
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I too use Excel.  I have a sheet for books I have, books I want, books I've read, lists of authors who write paranormal, lists of Black Lace and Ellora's Cave I have/want. It's nice being on the computer, where I need it when I'm on PBS. And you can sort it and do whatever you want (basically) with it.

Date Posted: 9/8/2007 9:47 PM ET
Member Since: 4/18/2005
Posts: 663
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I use Bibliophil to keep track of the books I've read"


Date Posted: 9/9/2007 8:44 AM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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I like the pda idea. I'm not real good with figuring out how to get stuff transferred on my pda but it sounds like a rainy day challenge I may tackle. I love my notebook at home but I am freq at a bookstore or thrift and wish I new if I had a particular book already.   

Date Posted: 9/10/2007 12:43 AM ET
Member Since: 8/21/2007
Posts: 56
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I mainly use an excel spreadsheet, but last week I converted it to a webpage. This way I can access it from almost anywhere as I need to. I think I need to add number of pages to the list though.



Date Posted: 9/13/2007 10:58 AM ET
Member Since: 2/19/2006
Posts: 938
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I am horrible at remembering - particularly when books come out with new covers.  I make certain I do a stars rating here.  That when when I look at the book online, if it has a yellow stars rating, I know I have read the book.

Date Posted: 9/13/2007 2:38 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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what's a stars rating?

Date Posted: 9/13/2007 4:47 PM ET
Member Since: 11/13/2005
Posts: 1,950
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LibraryThing.com....Best.Thing.Ever.  http://www.librarything.com/ 

I'm also horrible at remembering titles/authors, and having the cover art show there is a huge bonus over trying to do an excel spreadsheet for me.

And it's free up to 200 books or lifetime for 25 bucks.

Last Edited on: 9/13/07 4:50 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/14/2007 12:59 PM ET
Member Since: 2/7/2007
Posts: 44
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I definitely second the LibraryThing recommendation. That thing saves my hard-earned money :-).

It's so easily sortable, and all you have to do is add tags about whether you've read it, want it, etc.

Very VERY handy