The Finished Book Tag

First, a complaint. Bookstooge made me set up a LibraryThing account, and now I’m dedicating significant percentage of my free time into moving my catalogue there… I have to agree, it’s an excellent website, and so much fun πŸ™‚ They even have some of my obscure Polish books in the database, although some I have to put in manually.


I did not have time to check the more advanced options, but this week I started adding 50-100 books a day and when I’m done I’ll look what more they have to offer.


But that’s not the main topic of today.

Back in December we were tagged by the excellent Bookforager with The Finished Book Tag. It looked really interesting so added it to my list of tags I want to do someday, and here we are, only four months later πŸ˜‰


Do you keep a list of the books you have read?

Yes, in a spreadsheet, on Goodreads. I started relatively late, in my mid twenties, before that I only had incomplete offline lists. I’m no longer active on a website where I started, but I moved all my ratings into Goodreads.

It’s silly, but I feel recording the fact I’ve read something makes it more meaningful. I also rate movies watched on IMDB, for the same reason. I might not have time and patience to review everything, but even a date and simple rating refreshes memory, even after a few years. More on lists in the next question πŸ™‚

If you record statistics, what statistics do you record?

Oh, I do, I do, with unhealthy dedication. I use Goodreads and a spreadsheet, and I used to use a third place, a Polish Goodreads-analogue called Biblionetka. It was too much work, to use three systems, and Biblionetka changed their layout to one I really didn’t like, so now it’s only two.

Goodreads you all know. It is great as a source of stats, and I’m always enjoying their “Your Year in Books” yearly compilation. Goodreads is easy to maintain, and you don’t have to actively use the networking features to enjoy multiple benefits.


I might be tempted to also rate books on LibraryThing, if it’s possible to import ratings. Perhaps some of you might be able to offer advice on that in the comments πŸ™‚

Spreadsheet is slightly different. I only put the basic info there, date, author, title, and format (paper/audio/electronic). And only larger books, whereas on Goodreads I’d rate anything that is there, even 20-page comics and some of the books I read to my nieces.


Do you give star ratings for books and if so, what do you score books out of and how do you come about this score?

Yes, I do, on Goodreads. On Re-E and in the spreadsheet it’s a 1-10 scale. I’m rather generous with Goodreads stars. With 1774 books my average rating is 3.90.

That’s because I’m not taking many risks when choosing my books, and also because a decent book I enjoyed gets ***, even if there were some flaws. If I really enjoyed it, it’s ****, and when I love something – I give full *****.

To get **, a book needs to be weak, but with something to save it. There are not many *, but to get this book needs to be weak and completely unenjoyable. Or get me angry for some reason.

I just took a look at my 1-stars, and there are some books I’d probably should rate higher, if I looked at things calmly. Maybe I’ll re-read some of them at some point… and there were times I was too generous.

I consider myself justified by how Goodreads name their ratings. Only * is “did not like”, and I rarely read books I don’t like. *** is “liked it”, and I can honestly said I like books I rated with three stars πŸ™‚

Do you review books?

Well, I’m writing this on a book review blog πŸ™‚ I don’t review as often as I used to, and only a fraction of what I read, but it’s still something I really enjoy. If I feel particularly inspired (or vengeful, if it’s a negative review πŸ˜‰ ). I wish I was as prolific as, say, some other bloggers from Re-E πŸ˜‰

Where do you put your finished books?

Back on the bookshelf, mostly. Around 70% of them? Then, there are some ebooks, and audiobooks are deleted from my phone after I finish with them πŸ˜‰


With less and less shelf space available, my girlfriend started borrowing books she knows I’m looking for from our friends. I have mixed feelings, as the good ones I’d rather have within my reach… That’s one of the reasons why I stopped using libraries, the other being they simply rarely have what I want, as most of my reading is books never published in Poland.

How do you pick your next book?

In a few different ways. Sometimes it’s a book that spent significant time on my TBR and I just feel it’s time. Sometimes, there’s a specific topic I want to explore, genre I want to revisit.

My favourite situation is to just stand in front of my bookshelves and browse, until I find inspiration πŸ™‚

Do you have any other rituals for when you have finished a book?

Not really. The main thing is to record the fact it’s read, and rate the book. I might do some research, on the author or some topics explored by the book, and I move to the next one.

Re-reading bkfrgr’s take on this TAG I noticed she waits with the rating until the book settles in a bit. That’s something I might start doing myself, that might lower my average score, immediately after I’m too immersed in the world I’ve spent some hours in to be objective.


It’s an old tag many blogs already did, so I’m not tagging anyone, but all comments are welcome, and if I reminded someone they haven’t done this one yet, feel free to follow πŸ™‚

55 thoughts on “The Finished Book Tag

    1. piotrek

      With ratings, yeah, thank, I’ll look into it.

      Books owned, I don’t record that on Goodreads, only in an old piece of software that is no longer updated, and is unable to export data in recognizable format 😦

      Liked by 1 person

        1. piotrek

          I could get a txt, but cleaning that to a state where it would be possible to import that anywhere… too much work, and not half as fun as scanning books with LibraryThing’s app πŸ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

  1. I love it when people post pictures of their bookshelves. Of course, we’re actively trying to shrink ours, so….

    Stats is the main reason I joined up with devilreads (for about the umpteenth time). So far, everyone is leaving me alone and I’m not doing anything besides rating books. No reviews, no joining of groups, no friends, etc. Seems to be working out ok. At Year’s End will be the real proof though!

    And yes, you should be more like Ola and write more πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 2 people

                1. Absolutely not! πŸ˜€ Nor he resembles a snowman 😜
                  As for Disney, I must admit I am thoroughly peeved at this mass production monopoly. Haven’t decided yet what I’m going to do about it, but the feeling of irritation hasn’t abandoned me since I watched the last SW movie – even more so now after we’ve rewatched the original trilogy! πŸ˜‰

                  Liked by 1 person

    1. I always like to see your bookshelves, and I’m glad you’re keeping them stacked πŸ˜‰
      Out of necessity I have turned more toward libraries and ebooks, but still the most complete reading experience for me is associated with the act of opening a physical book, leafing through its pages, feeling it’s weight – and I keep a list of books I have read and loved so much I want to possess a physical copy of 😊

      Liked by 3 people

            1. LOL, nice to hear a dissenting voice! Everybody else and their aunt wants me to get a Goodreads account – but I can always count on you, Bookstooge, to come up with a timely warning! Now I have my excuse! πŸ˜„

              Liked by 2 people

  2. What a beautiful room! Books up to the ceiling, it’s very beautiful, here is a splendid library that is a pleasure to see !!! – for my part, I’m a kind of book squirrel, I pile them up in my house and I never give them back, I lend them out when they are read in my sofas… it’s sickly I think…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. piotrek

      If it’s a sickness, I don’t wanna get better πŸ˜‰

      Thanks, I love my library, this is definitely the central point of the flat for me… I moved in here 6 years ago, and only last year I had to get rid of some books, to make place for more. Before that, I had a small room and books everywhere, shelves, piles, two rows deep…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Welcome to LibraryThing! You should be able to import from a spreadsheet (if you have the ISBN numbers) and include ratings; and I _think_ you can do an export/import from Goodreads (but I’ve never tried it). That said, you don’t get the control over edition / cover art etc so if you enjoy cataloguing then manually is the way to get exactly what you want πŸ™‚ If you have a smartphone, a barcode scanning app really sped things up for me – I scanned all the barcodes to make a spreadsheet and imported that. Magic!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. piotrek

      Thank you πŸ™‚

      I want to transfer my library, not my ratings, and these I don’t have on a spreadsheet. But it’s fun to scan them, I don’t complain πŸ™‚
      Later, I might import ratings from Goodreads, but I’m yet to decide on that.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. You’re going to end up making me convert to (or at least add) LibraryThing to my list of things to do on top of Goodreads too now. Something about it sounds so appealing.

    I use Letterboxd to build my catalog of movies watched/to watch and to leave my thoughts/ratings on. I used to do IMdB but I felt like it wasn’t as user-friendly as it should be when it comes to rating. It might be something that could interest you, if you ever got more time to spare for this kind of thing. πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. piotrek

      Letterboxd sure looks better than IMDB… can you import data between these two?

      Library Thing starts nice, but it’s too early for me to recommend it. I’m having fun though πŸ™‚

      Liked by 2 people

      1. piotrek

        I’m only beginning there, but it does seem more respectable, and it’s probably easier to isolate oneself from more annoying co-users πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I checked out the site Stooge was going on about. It all looks interesting and I signed up, apart from that I have done nothing else. Love that shelf of yours mand, the way it is basically most of your wall. Have you got a list of books you are looking for in physical form? if so, if we have it we could maybe post to poland if it is in our collection and we decide not to keep it. I’d rather send a book to a good ho,e than leave it on a traveling bookcase on a train station…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. piotrek

      LibraryThing – you can just scan the codes from your books, I found it kind of fun, if you ever have some time πŸ™‚
      Thanks, when I filled the shelves with books, after moving in, I felt I really have my place on Earth, I simply love it.
      Thanks for you kind offer :)! I was complaining about our libraries, I don’t really have a problem getting the books I want to read. I get used copies from Amazon Marketplace or new ones from several different sources, it’s just that I need to slow down my expansion, there’s limit to even my shelf-space, and I’m no longer living alone…

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I like Bookstooge also, but he’s sometimes a little gloomily. That said, it’s a great project you have underway, but I’m still wondering. Apart from producing some numbers, how are they mathematically related?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Does it say something about your evolution as reader/reviewer? Shifting trends? Your reading frequency? How those relate to general trends among the reading public and the published titles? How has amazon influenced your reading habits? On what lines do your reading habits diverge from those of your partner? And I can keep going on for ever …

        Liked by 1 person

        1. piotrek

          Ah, that… well… I’m a sociologist by training, and accountant by trade, stats are my joy, by themselves πŸ˜‰

          Even my old spread was a chance to monitor the scale and form of my reading (audiobooks to paper, most often read authors etc). Goodreads gives me way more (how my reading looks measured against other readers). LibraryThing I need to explore, but it seems to have even more, like list of places and character – real and imagined – featured in my books… lots of cool stuff πŸ™‚

          Liked by 1 person

  7. ok I’ve been trying to resist joining library thing, but you and bookstooge have got me really tempted. I hear you about recording ratings/books read makes it feel more meaningful and can definitely help bring back memories. And I have an unhealthy dedication to stats too. And I like the year in stats as well. And I think I’m getting better at choosing books too (so I have low number of 1-2* books) Gosh love your bookshelves as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. piotrek

      Thanks πŸ™‚

      Well, you’d probably enjoy some of the LT’s features. It’s less showy than GR, and I think I’m going to like it. And scanning codes from books was fun πŸ˜‰


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