These apps will change the way you (and your kids) read

Today is officially National Read a Book Day. That’s read a book. Not a Buzzfeed article, Skimm summary, or September issue.

Of course, even if you deliberately make time to read important novels and memoirs and diligently enforce daily reading time for your kids (all while living a fast-paced digital life), it can be hard to get good book recommendations, whether you’re browsing a Barnes & Noble shelf or the Kindle store.

These two apps can help by offering personalized book recommendations and making it easier to get your hands on the tomes that interest you. Welcome to a life in which you never have to force yourself to “just finish the first chapter” before throwing the book into a growing pile of rejects.

book recommendations

for you

Recently launched app RECO is like a digital book club in which the members actually share your interests (as opposed to the coworker you had to invite to your IRL book club who keeps recommending teenage vampire stories).

Unlike other apps that use an algorithm, RECO allows you to discover, share, and discuss books with your real friends (via Facebook integration) and people around the world who like what you like. When you first sign up, you’re led through a personalization exercise to build an interest profile, and then RECO helps you find and subscribe to curated book lists from experts and others who share similar passions. Plus, more than eight million books in have been tagged with interest profiles to help you search for your next favorite.

It’s also easy to purchase a book that’s been recommended for you, and you can keep track of what you want to read next and what you’ve already finished in a reading list.


book recommendations

for your littles

Epic! (yes, the exclamation point is part of the name) is like Netflix for reading. The all-you-can-read eBook subscription service is just for kids under 12 and provides unlimited access to more than 15,000 children’s books.

You can help your little one create a profile that takes into account things like their age and interests (i.e. fantasy, adventure), and then like Netflix, Epic! sorts books into categories you can browse on the dashboard. In addition to a “Recommended for You” selection, there are also collections like “Nap Time” and “Transportation” (for those tiny truck and train lovers), top rated picks, and recommendations based on other titles you chose (i.e. “Because You Like Mystery…”).

Ideally, you and your kids will both end up with titles you love, so you can curl up on the couch together and just read.

What are you and your little ones reading to celebrate National Read A Book Day? Share your recommendations with me in the comments, below!

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