What makes Libreture a great alternative to The StoryGraph

The StoryGraph is a fantastic and welcome alternative to Goodreads. Founded by Nadia Odunayo and Rob Frelow, it's a cataloguing system for books, with benefits. It helps readers record their books and track their reading. The StoryGraph's biggest benefit is its very special recommendation engine, based on the mood, topic, and themes of a book. A lot of users find that really helpful, as prolific readers it can be difficult to track down something completely new, and those who are less well-read can often struggle to find something.

Libreture is an ebook cloud library where you can store all your DRM-free ebooks, digital comics, magazines, and RPGs. As you upload your books, it uses the data contained in them to catalogue your collection. As you read your books, you can track each title and your reading activity. One of the great things about Libreture is how useful it is for discovering new favourites. By displaying where you bought your books, you help other readers discover DRM-free bookshops and ebooks new to them.

  • Libreture vs. The StoryGraph comparison: What are the differences?
    • Accuracy of ebook data entry
    • Self-Service or volunteer led
    • Payment Model
    • Reading Pressure
    • Words vs Pages
    • Book Recommendations
  • Why is Libreture a great alternative to The StoryGraph?

Libreture vs. The StoryGraph comparison: What are the differences?

Accuracy of ebook data entry

To record your ebooks and comics on The Storygraph, you start by looking to see if it's already there. If it isn't, you can either leave it and wait - the developers are constantly adding to the database of books, so it may be there in the future - or, you can manually add the book entry yourself. At the time of writing, indie ebooks and comics seem to be less likely to already be entered on the database, so if you have a lot of indie books, this could slow you down. Another issue is the problem of different editions - Goodreads had a similar problem. Different editions often have different covers, so even if you find the right book, it sometimes has the wrong cover, and might even be a completely different version in some cases.

All the book data on Libreture comes from ebooks you own and upload, and every book entry is an individual book, so when you upload your books, the system automatically uses the book's own metadata - title, author, description, ISBN and book cover - to populate the catalog and complete your individual book's page. (As long as the ebook has its metadata correctly included in its files). Libreture even helps with formats that don't include additional data, such as, PDF, CBZ & CBR for comics. Libreture uses the filename, and you can quickly and easily edit the book's info after it's uploaded. The time saver here is that you'll never have to add a complete book entry yourself.

And Libreture always displays the right cover!

Self-Service or volunteer led

Volunteers support The Storygraph by adding book data and correcting errors in book entries. It's a great way for the service to streamline the catalogues, manage its book data and support readers - similar to the Goodreads model. The kicker is that there's a vast amount of book data out there to process and manage, and that's a lot of unpaid labour dependent on people having the time to help, and being able to afford to give it freely.

Libreture doesn't need volunteers to correct book information. Because the data is taken directly from the book file, it's already there as soon as you upload the file. If you have to make changes - for example, sometimes the metadata doesn't include the description - you can add it manually when you want, nothing more than a quick copy-paste.

If you're adding PDF, CBZ or CBR books - which don't include this data - again, you can quickly add or edit it directly on the page. You can even see the cover art for reference while you're doing this. Libreture also gives you a head start by using the book's filename as a placeholder for a missing title.

Payment Model

A sustainable business model is essential for any business, especially one where users are expected to expend a large amount of effort compiling information that benefits other users and the business itself. The StoryGraph can be used for free, but certain features are limited to paying Plus users. These paid features include advanced stats, up next suggestions, unlimited recommendations, and priority support, among others.

With Libreture, all readers get the same full set of features, no matter if they're using Libreture for free or paying for extra storage. We base our pricing on how much a reader uses Libreture, not how. Having access to all features means readers on the free tier get a real idea of how Libreture works, and can decide to add more books if they like it. And that's what costs us money: storage - so that's what we charge for. Everyone gets the same attention to their support queries and suggestions too - no paying to jump the queue.

Reading Pressure

One of The Storygraph's main features is its reading goals and challenges. These are a great help for readers wanting to record every detail of their reading journey, or ensure they hit certain goals or read certain books. For others they can be a constant reminder that they're not reading fast enough, haven't read enough, or are reading the 'wrong' books.

Libreture doesn't push you to read more. It places less pressure on you to read, presents fewer stats, and reduces competition between readers. Pressure on book bloggers to read and review a book, avid readers responding to hype by pushing themselves to finish a book, and the general ickyness of peer pressure can feel overwhelming. Libreture is about enjoying books. That's why we're big fans of slow reading.

Words vs Pages

On The StoryGraph your reading stats record the number of pages or complete books you've read. Graphs and statistics are based on this. Readers can record how much of a book they've read using a percentage, but this is converted into pages by The Storygraph's charts. It's a very paper-centric approach and doesn't work so well with ebooks.

An ebook can contain a different number of pages (or screens) depending how readers have set the size of the text, the line height, margins, and other settings that help them better enjoy their books. Ebooks are usually measured in word count or the length of time it might take to read. We appreciate this at Libreture, so we record complete books, their status and whether you actually enjoyed them.

Book Recommendations

The StoryGraph uses machine learning to understand readers' preferences and recommend books based on mood, themes and topics. The StoryGraph's recommendation system is one of the best out there, and right from its first appearance, readers have been strong on the praise for the assistance it gives. It's worth keeping an eye on the types of books it recommends though. A lot of big hitters are likely, but the less usual novels and indies may not be so easily found this way.

On Libreture, we've gone for the word-of-mouth approach. It's a traditional marketing technique and it doesn't disappoint. Our recommendations are written by readers, and since it takes time to write any kind of review or recommendation, they mainly only write them for the books they truly love. At Libreture, we're also planning to take the review path shortly, enabling readers to really say what they think of the ebooks they read. Because Libreture is DRM-free only, there is a heavy slew of indie ebooks, comics, and RPGs, so the chances of you finding something that bit more unusual is pretty strong.

Why is Libreture a great alternative to The StoryGraph?

Libreture offers readers not only a place to store your ebooks and track reading activity, but also:

  • No need to manually enter information if your book isn't listed. Your ebook files do all the work, simply upload them to your cloud library.
  • A pressure-free experience when tracking your reading and recommending books.
  • Easy book discovery, with direct links to independent bookstores for each book, and word-of-mouth recommendations.
  • Easy access to your books on any device, no matter where you are, and an OPDS feed so you can access your books from any compatible reading app or service.

Readers are storing 15,351 DRM-free ebooks with Libreture!

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Contact Me

Get in touch about Libreture.
Contact me at kevin@libreture.com or Twitter or Mastodon.

Readers are storing 15,351 ebooks, digital comics & magazines with Libreture.

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