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5 must-have apps for all lovers of literature

Sanjana Ray
26th Jul 2016
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Technology has infiltrated every aspect of our lives, and reading is no exception to this. At the rate we’re going, the next generation will not know the feeling of holding a hard-bound, second-hand copy in all its yellow-paged glory or the joy at coming across a first edition – because the world is turning digital.

However instead of holding onto old-school habits, it’s time to look towards the future and embrace it. Carrying a global library in your back-pocket offers a number of advantages. Besides the fact that it is a portable delight, you can substitute the price of a thousand books with one monthly subscription and make your life a whole lot more cost-effective.

apps-for-literature-lovers

So, for all ye ardent lovers of literature who have your noses stuck in the book at every traffic light, or while lying on a grassy field on a sunny day, oblivious to the crowds beyond the four corners in your hands – here’s a list of apps you should be downloading as you read this!

Goodreads

Available on Android and iOS

Everyone who knows Goodreads loves it. This is an app that allows readers access to its global library, where they can discover new names and titles and, through the app, recommend and review it for others to see. Available in English and Italian, you can follow your friend’s reading activity on Goodreads if they’re in your network, see what they read last and get recommended. You can also rate books after reading them, thus setting the bar for the next reader who comes across the same. For all the users with a subscription and a sign-in ID, it offers a ‘to-read’ shelf, where you select books that you want to read at a later date. Another fascinating option the app offers is the ‘barcode scanner’, where you can scan in hard-copy books that you have found, and these can be added to the ‘to-read’ shelf. It offers you the options of joining book-clubs, participating in reading challenges and also reading e-books for free. It’s like actually joining a virtual book-club and saving time with the niceties!

Google Play Books

Available on Android and iOS

Offering services in English, French, Dutch and a number of other languages, this app is the world’s largest e-bookstore. You can login using any Google ID. This app allows you to shop for books from Google Play and gives you access to over a million different books and authors. It also allows you to upload up to over 1,000 e-books that are in PDF or EPUB formats. The books, once purchased, can be read online on any website and offline as well, with unlimited storage of your selected books on the cloud. From John Milton to Stephanie Meyers, they have it all.

Kobo

Available on Android, iOS, Mac, Blackberry and Windows 8.0 (and above)

Kobo offers a staggering 3.5 million books to choose from, most of which are either free or priced extremely pocket-friendly. Available in a variety of languages, including English, Japanese and German, it makes reading more fun by offering additional services like fun literature quizzes and virtual competitions which are prized. It also offers you the option of tracking the amount of time set aside for reading a book and lets you review and share your thoughts on it too.

Amazon Kindle

Available on iOS 6.0 and later versions

Although available only on the iOS software, this app is the closest you can come to holding an actual book, in the digital world. For subscribers, it is available in a variety of languages like English, Chinese, French, to name a few, and offers you all the features that are available on a real kindle. It lets the users read books, magazines and newspapers on a user-friendly interface from among the 1,500,000 books and articles that are available on the sturdy bookshelves at Amazon. It allows you to record the last page you read, add notes to the pages and highlight any of the paragraphs you find interesting. You get all the features of a kindle and can probably save thousands of bucks by not having to buy one for the same. Paisa Wasool and how!

Nook

Available on Android and iOS

True to its name, this app allows users to explore every ‘nook’ and cranny of the digital reading space of over 3 million books, comics, newspapers and magazines. A Barnes and Noble App, it gives you the same kind of hospitality that you get after a trip to the famous book store, with over a million e-books and samples made available for free! It allows you to play around with the settings as you read, by changing the background and the colours, as well as the resolution. It is available in English, Spanish, German, French and Italian.

In light of our extremely hassling and busy-bee days, it isn’t quite possible to float down to the closest library and breathe in the dusky old-book smell, like we used to when we were children. But barring the smell and the feel, you can get the same kind of cosmic joy that you would as a curious child, by greedily taking in the stories of a million poets, writers and novelists with just a few taps.

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