Maybe you’ve noticed the abundance of graphic novel and audiobook reviews on the blog lately. It’s all due to Scribd.
After seeing my bookish friends raving about Scribd, I signed up for two free months. (When you use a friend’s referral code, you get two free months, or just sign up online and get one. This is my code if you’d like 2 free months.)
What is Scribd?Scribd is an online book subscription service. It’s a comparison that’s been overused, but yes, like Netflix for books. The cost is $8.99 per month USD. Once you sign up, you get access to thousands of books: ebooks, audiobooks, and graphic novels.
Reading Books from ScribdYou can access books from your computer or download apps for Android and Apple devices. I read books on my Android tablet and listen to audiobooks on my iPhone, so I’ll cover both those experiences here.
When I’m home, I stream the audiobooks from wifi, but I have the option to save books (ebooks too) to my device. A great option if you have to leave your house!
Finding, Saving BooksAfter signing up, I started by browsing the catalogue. You can browse either Books or Audiobooks, by category. Also, if you’re curious you can check out Scribd Selects (editor favorites) and Top Books (trending and bestsellers). Once you find something you like, click the Add to Library button and it’s added to your library and the Saved for Later bar on your homepage. This Scribd help page explains it all in detail.
When you’ve added a few books to your library, you start getting recommendations. I like this feature because I don’t always know what I want. Sometimes I end up saving books I would never have found on my own and books I forgot I wanted to read.
Searching for books has been less successful for me. There are a lot of books on Scribd, but not everything. Scribd tries hard to make a match though. For example, a search for H Is For Hawk didn’t bring up that book but one titled H Is For Hardcore (!!!) and a Tony Hawk biography. Not what I was looking for, sorry.
Also, not every book is available in all formats. I’ve ended up listening to a lot of audiobooks, because the ones I want to read are only available as such. If the book is available in another format, it is mentioned in the description.
The DownsidesBesides ignoring all my other books since getting Sribd, I do have a few issues with it.
First, the Apple app, which I use exclusively for listening to audiobooks. For some of the books, it crashed. A Lot. It was frustrating. I’ve also found that if I pause the book and then go back, it won’t always start from where I left off. I have to make sure to bookmark my spot before pausing, otherwise it starts the chapter from the beginning. I really hope this glitch is fixed soon. (It’s a Known Issue.)
Another weird thing, for both apps, was when I tried to remove an audiobook from my library, it kept coming back. Ack! What a pain.
ConclusionWith my free trial period almost up, I’m definitely going to continue paying the monthly fee. At least for now, until I can’t find anything I really want to read on there.
I would definitely recommend Scribd for people who like graphic novels and audiobooks. It's not going to replace going to the bookstore or library for me, but a nice addition to my reading life.