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Old 09-14-2021, 06:52 PM   #1
oavaldezi
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Looking for a cataloging app. Anyone tried Libib?

I'm looking for an app where I can catalog/manage my library and my wish-to-read books. I currently have scattered records on Amazon, Kobo, Goodreads and Google Books, and would prefer a centralized solution.

I've found Libib (https://www.libib.com/), but has anyone tried other solutions?
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Old 09-14-2021, 07:16 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by oavaldezi View Post
I'm looking for an app where I can catalog/manage my library and my wish-to-read books. I currently have scattered records on Amazon, Kobo, Goodreads and Google Books, and would prefer a centralized solution.

I've found Libib (https://www.libib.com/), but has anyone tried other solutions?
Haven't tried Calibre?
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Old 09-14-2021, 07:18 PM   #3
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Your best solution is Calibre.
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Old 09-14-2021, 10:25 PM   #4
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But isn't Calibre for local ebook collections? I'd also like to catalog books I want to purchase and read in the future.
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Old 09-15-2021, 01:56 AM   #5
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But isn't Calibre for local ebook collections? I'd also like to catalog books I want to purchase and read in the future.
You can do that creating empty books, I have a library which includes only the books that I know they are going to appear in the future and I search for them to check if they have appeared in the libraries I have the card.
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Old 09-27-2021, 06:18 PM   #6
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I've tried Libib (web UI only, not the app though) and still prefer LibraryThing, especially for ebooks.

Accounts are free with a limit on total number of items cataloged before they want you to upgrade, try it out for yourself.

You can also download your exported Good Reads file (a csv file) to import to other services/sites, but when I tried this on Libib my results were not good. I think I only got about 1/3 or maybe half imported. YMMV, this was a while ago, maybe it's improved.

LibraryThing technically has an app now, but I think it's quite limited in functionality compared to the web. I only use the app to check my collection, not to do entering or editing of data.
The web UI has power edit mode which I find useful, you can tag multiple selected entries this way.
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Old 09-28-2021, 08:14 AM   #7
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I've tried LibraryThing and it was awful. I found an error where when I went to put in a book, it came up with details for a different book. I reported this to the librarians and they never bothered to fix it.
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Old 09-28-2021, 03:26 PM   #8
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Have you checked out The Storygraph? Since you're considering online solutions, I'd strongly recommend giving it a try.
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Old 12-22-2021, 01:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oavaldezi View Post
I'm looking for an app where I can catalog/manage my library and my wish-to-read books. I currently have scattered records on Amazon, Kobo, Goodreads and Google Books, and would prefer a centralized solution.

I've found Libib (https://www.libib.com/), but has anyone tried other solutions?
Iíd like to bump this thread as Iím in a semi-similar position. Iíve been researching for days what would be the best book cataloguing system for home libraries but alas I find, while there are plenty of options available, most are lacking.

I tried Libib years ago when they had I think a 5000 limit on the free option, I believe this has now been reduced significantly, can anyone confirm whatís the max number of books you can add whilst remaining free?

When I tried it tonight it just didnít have enough categories to my liking. itís a very basic cataloguing system. The interface is nice and clean but I found the information you can edit to be lacking. There was no options for genre, location of the book itself eg is it in my home library or my office library or in my lounge room bookshelf, it didnít give me options for first time it was published, where it was purchased from and how much, which edition it is, is it part of a series etc. I obviously wouldnít need all these categories for every book I input but there are some that I would like to have some of these info.

Iím trialing the free Book Buddy but alas it has a 50 book limit which is nowhere near enough for most of us. Iím really enjoying using it thus far . The interface is clean and there are so many categories, half of which I donít know what it is, but I think itís better to have more than not enough information. I also like the notes section where I can add my annotated notes so I donít have to have another app for that too.

Iím also loving the book tracker app called Bookly or previously called Bookedout I believe and am seriously considering purchasing the yearly subscription. This app is slightly different as it keeps track of your reading stats eg. How many pages you read per minute/hour, you can set reading goals, it gives you an estimated time of when youíll complete the book based on your reading speed etc however when I read on the AppStore it states itís also somewhat of a book cataloguing app, or thatís how it is translating to me in their description but it looks significantly different to the apps we are discussing now, Libib, LibraryThing etc so for those familiar with Bookly, can it also be used as a library cataloguing app as Iíd rather purchase one aop rather than two.

If anyone else has any other recommends Iíd love to hear of it. Looking for the following features:-

- approximately 1000 min books
- location category
- ability to add seriesí together
- ability to import/export to Goodreads or csv/pdf file so Iíll always have a backup so if the app goes bust I donít lose all my data
- ISBN scanning input so I donít have to manually input the basics book data

Thanks in advance.
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Old 01-18-2022, 10:19 PM   #10
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@Mook4Nook I very recently discovered Libib. I have around 1k unread ebooks sitting in a file on my laptop with the book title and author and that's it. Not the best system for finding my next read, especially when I can't remember what the book's about! So I finally decided I had to spend some proper time cataloguing them. I didn't really know of any websites other than goodreads and storygraph. Goodreads was a hard no and storygraph I like for book suggestions but prefer to keep it for that only. Came across an article which suggested Libib and Librarything. The latter seems far more popular but I took one look at it and was reminded too much of goodreads. Plus, it seems to be quite community based - not a bad thing but not what I was looking for. I literally just wanted somewhere I could have a catalogue of my books that would show me a cover and a description. I don't care about tracking my reads or setting goals or anything else. (Also, if anyone is wondering about why not use Calibre, I like Calibre but I don't find it intuitive, I did not want to upload every single ebook I own to Calibre so that I could catalogue it, and unless you scroll through all the books and select each one, one by one, you cannot see a cover or description so is too time consuming.)

Libib is perfect for my needs. It has a clean, simple but still sophisticated looking interface, you can choose to view books in a few ways (a list of titles and author, just the book cover so a book case view, or one book per line with cover and all info such as description etc.). You can still have up to 5k books on the free version and you can create different libraries or shelves I guess some websites would call them (I don't think there is a limit on the number of libraries you can have, just the number of books). Under each book you can edit all info except ISBN if you add a book from a Libib search. (If you manually add a book you can edit ISBN info.) The info you can add and edit are the book cover, the book title, the author and there is a description box but no reason you can't add your own info. However, you can also add tags, your own notes, and you can add a book to a group (series) so that all those books will stay grouped together if you ever want to sort by book title rather than author. You can add a rating (5 stars including half stars) and a status (not begun, in progress, abandoned, completed, along with date begun and date finished if those matter to you) and your own review.

As I had no catalogue already set up I basically had to add every single book from scratch. The easiest way for me to do this was to just go to a decent bookshop website (mostly Waterstones in my case but I did also make use of amazon and goodreads), copy the name of the book from the file, find book in Waterstones, copy ISBN into Libib and book is added automatically. I also edited a lot of the descriptions as I added each book as I didn't want 2 paras of gushing reviews before I even got to a brief blurb. Some did need a cover uploading but I just right clicked on the Waterstones cover, saved as image and uploaded to Libib - took 10 secs max. It took me about 5 nights to add them all, it's time consuming but a bit mindless, I just sat in front of the tv while I was doing it though and it passed the time. The one criticism I do have though is that you cannot search a book using ASIN, only ISBN, so a couple of titles I have that were only released as ebooks had to be manually entered.

You can import a CSV file though if you have one (I'm not sure how successfully as I did not use this feature) and you can also export your libraries as a CSV file too. Your libraries can be published if you want to share them with friends (people do need to specifically look for you though either with your name or username, you can't just browse randomly) or remain unpublished and is easy enough to change from one status to the other in settings. Mine are unpublished but if you want to have a look at one of my libraries to get a better idea, I'm happy to publish one and post a link for you.

ETA: I do not have the app, I've only used the website on my laptop so I'm not sure about scanning ISBN rather than inputting but the description on google play says it does scan.

Last edited by Drou; 01-18-2022 at 10:31 PM.
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Old 01-19-2022, 01:24 PM   #11
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A quick update: I downloaded the Libib app to see about scanning ISBNs. It worked fine although I can see if you're just using the app why you might think it's lacking in information at first glance. Although, selecting the book does show all the info and if you select to edit you do have all the same options as the website (tags, groups etc). I think if ever decide to catalogue my physical books I'd use the app to scan them and then the full website to edit/add information.

I also thought I'd try Librarything just because it seems to be such a favourite. I exported one of my libraries from Libib (no problems, worked well) but my first impressions for using it to catalogue my books was unfortunately correct. It felt a bit clunky, not as much as goodreads but not that much better. However, I did think the communities aspect of Librarything was very good and within a few minutes I'd found a few promising word of mouth recommendations to add to my tbr list. So, my conclusion from all this is that if you are looking for a site or app to replace all the 'functions' of goodreads, I'm not sure that you'll be able to find that all in one place, or at least not in one place that does it well. I am now using Storygraph for book suggestions, Libib for cataloguing and Librarything for the community. If I was at all interested in tracking my reading I'd give bookly a try.
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Old 01-19-2022, 02:14 PM   #12
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@dDrou what does Libib do for you that you cannot do with Calibre?

Calibre is free with no restrictions and has no "Pro" version at an expensive price.
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Old 01-19-2022, 10:15 PM   #13
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@dDrou what does Libib do for you that you cannot do with Calibre?

Calibre is free with no restrictions and has no "Pro" version at an expensive price.
Tbh, probably nothing but I'm not paying for the pro version and I very much doubt I'll ever need to (unless they change their rules regarding free accounts). As originally stated, I wanted to catalogue my very long tbr list of ebooks so I could see at a glance what each book was. I'm more of a visual person so I wanted somewhere where I could have a bookshelf view of each book but could also very easily read a short description of each book to see what it was about.

First off, with calibre, I like it for converting books, editing metadata etc but the actual program itself is not intuitive for me personally- I can do the basics but I feel like I need a qualification in computer science to get the most out of it. Secondly, whilst it can display all the required information IF you click on each individual book, it cannot (to my limited knowledge) display books in a bookshelf view. When I open it up, all I see is a list of books, authors and series, I then need to click on each book separately to se the information in the right hand panel, whereas when I see the covers laid out in front of me I tend to remember which book is which. Lastly, my ebooks are saved in a folder on my laptop - if I were to add every single one to calibre, I'd then have another file of each ebook in the separate calibre folder so would essentially be using double the memory for each book - when my book folder alone is already 10gb it seems a bit ridiculous to do that.

What it essentially boils down to is personal preference really - most places you can catalogue your books will probably all allow you to see similar information, it just comes down to which format you most like the look of and ease of use. For me that's Libib although if I had to pay the Pro version rates to use it, I would probably settle for another free catalogue instead tbh.
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Old 01-19-2022, 10:23 PM   #14
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Secondly, whilst it can display all the required information IF you click on each individual book, it cannot (to my limited knowledge) display books in a bookshelf view. When I open it up, all I see is a list of books, authors and series, I then need to click on each book separately to se the information in the right hand panel, whereas when I see the covers laid out in front of me I tend to remember which book is which.

The attached screenshots show what the cover grid layout in Calibre can look look like. As for the space issue, with the cost of storage today, you could easily keep the Calibre copies on your laptop while storing the originals on a removable drive - which is good for backup anyway. imo the advantages of Calibre outweigh the small cost of the extra storage used.
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Old 01-19-2022, 10:33 PM   #15
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(Also, if anyone is wondering about why not use Calibre, I like Calibre but I don't find it intuitive, I did not want to upload every single ebook I own to Calibre so that I could catalogue it, and unless you scroll through all the books and select each one, one by one, you cannot see a cover or description so is too time consuming.)
These seem to be the only objections to calibre.

For the first, "not intuitive", I can't comment really on. I've been using calibre for it to be natural. But, I don't remember having any real issues. There are always things in application that jar, but, as long as the application is consistent within itself, I am usually OK.

For the "upload every single ebook", that is effectively what you did for libib. Except that seemed to be fairly painful. You needed to look it up on another site and then add it to libib?

If I had to do this in calibre, I would add the books (one at a time, or drag-and-drop a batch or use the auto add), then select them in the interface and start the background metadata fetch. Unless the titles and authors in the file names were bad, or they were very unusual books, 95% would be match and I would get the details including the cover. The rest handle would need to be handled one at a time, but it would largely be fixing typos in the titles or authors. It would take a while, but most of it can be done unattended.

If you don't want the book files in calibre, you could also generate a CSV from the file names and import that to calibre. Then do the rest that I mentioned.

The last thing you mentions is covers being displayed for multiple booksFor the covers, calibre has the cover grid that shows multiple covers with the titles and other details. And the cover browser that lets you scroll through them in another way. The only thing missing is a list view with an icon. Or, as you are happy using a browser app, you can use the calibre server which does have a list view with a cover icon.


But, a big reason for calibre to me is that I maintain the books and the details in one place. Using libib, goodreads or one of the other sites would mean I maintained the list of books in one place, and then had to match that to the actual books somewhere else. And I can read them via calibre if I want to, or get them onto my ereaders.
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