I added the Library Thing widget to my blog shortly after I started it. It is by no means completely representative of everything I have on my bookshelf. To enter all of my books would have required my getting up and walking across the room. And it takes something really earth-shattering to do that once I've ensconced myself in the recliner.
It isn't just a place to catalog one's books, however. There are all sorts of groups and message boards and other book-related things. I joined something called a 50-book challenge. The challenge is to read 50 books in a year. That should be a piece of cake, if I can ever get through Bridge of Sighs. It's a wonderfully written book, and I chose it for a stupid reason: I have seen the real Bridge of Sighs in Venice. And I didn't even take a picture of it. What a dork.
I didn't notice the first time I logged into Library Thing that they have a section on there called "Early Reviewers." If I'm just way behind the times (as usual) and you already knew about this extraordinary thing, you can skip the rest of this blog.
Apparently you can sign up to be an early reviewer of a book that hasn't been released yet. They post a short description of the book, tell how many review copies they have, when the book is due to be released, and how many people have requested each one so far. Some of it is pure chance; the rest of it is I don't know what because I forgot. I figured it was worth a mouse click or two, because they send you a free book and all you have to do is agree to write a review of it that is at least 25 words. Just try stopping anything I write (or say, for that matter) at 25 words. And it doesn't even have to be a GOOD review. And if you DON'T write a review, well....... They don't even come take you away in shackles or anything. They just might not send you any MORE free books.
Not one to take any chances, I clicked on almost every blooming book in there. Except diet books. And cookbooks. And self-help books. And personal finance books. What a bore. Give me trash, please. Some of the books were actually by some authors that I've read and enjoyed. There were a couple that must have a bunch of sex and killing in them, because they are written by authors my hubby reads a lot.
I went on the message board for the early reviewers once, and there were some pissed off people on there lamenting the fact that in such-and-such a period of time they had only been sent this many books. Get a grip, people! One free book in a lifetime is more than we ought to be able to expect in this world. Not counting library books that get so overdue we're ashamed to return them.
I got a message today that I was not one chosen to receive Early Reviewer books this time around. I was a little disappointed, but I'm not going to gnash my teeth or kick my dog or anything. I'll just click away when they put the next batch up there and hope for the best. And if I NEVER get a free book? The library has lots of them.