Presenting Books Like this…

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Ever stumped on what to read next? Are you done with a book, loved it a lot, and looking for similar books? Well, forget Amazon’s recommendations (so slow, and too much repetition), and check out Books Like This, a light and easy on the eyes app. It’s pretty straight-forward to use, just enter the name of any book you like, and it provides book recommendations based on your entry.

I entered my current read – Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie and here are the results I got:

My Recommendations Wheel

My Recommendations Wheel

OK, so the image is a little fuzzy. But the book recommendations are fairly spot on and undiluted (unlike Amazon, where a book bought for a friend can totally skew the results). The book results also make sense. The inner circle consists of more Rushdie books. The bottom corner has more Man Booker prize winners, the top right hand area has a bunch of travel-related/non-British or American-specific classics. The recommendations focus quite a bit on Coetzee, which tempts me to try him out. I have always avoided Coetzee because of people complaining his books are dense, but if his writing is comparable to Rushdie’s, well then I have a longish TBR list ready-made in front of me :).

The one improvement I would like in this app is that it gives the user an opportunity to filter out books already read, or otherwise not interested in…but I guess the simplicity factor would also go out of the window :D.

Do try this app and let me know what you think of the recommendations…

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  • Hi, you have a wonderful blog. I just added your blog to mine for the new updates. Besides, I am definitely going to try this recommendation test. let’s see what it throws up!

  • Very interesting, but this says it uses the data from Amazon, am I missing something here?

    • @Sanjith: Yes, it does use data from Amazon. The difference is Amazon recommendations get diluted because of the number and variety of the books you rate/buy. Here, it is based on just one book, so if you are looking for something similar to just one book, this is a better tool.

  • That seems substantially better than any of the other similar things I’ve seen in my life. I tested out a few of my favorite books, and the recommendations included both books I have read (and enjoyed) and books that I think I might want to read. Cool! I’m sort of excited to inspect this more closely. Thanks for sharing!

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