App reviews: Libby, ReadThisNext
One of the worst-kept secrets is that your local library often has way more to offer than a traditional book or two. E-books and audiobooks are as much a part of the catalog these days.
And Libby is an app from OverDrive -- a company that works with libraries around the country to show off their e-books and audiobooks on offer.
Users will need a valid library card from a participating system to use Libby. But if you meet those criteria, then the app makes it a snap to check out materials or place holds on the titles you want. You can read or listen to them right in the app.
It can also send your library books to a Kindle.
For the kiddos, you can access graphic novels or picture books with read-along audio.
Another bonus: You can sign into multiple library systems, if you hold multiple cards. The app will let you know when what you want is available.
Free, for iOS and Android devices and Windows 10.
If you love reading but can never figure out what your next book should be, ReadThisNext, as the name implies, is here to help.
You can use the app to follow your favorite authors and see what they suggest. Because you can follow multiple authors, you'll get a range of recommendations -- just in case you're having one of those days where you're not vibing with Haruki Murakami.
Signing up requires your email address. From there, you can search for authors you like and follow accounts accordingly.
The app's website describes it as being like a book club with all of your favorite authors, which is apt -- except that you can't get together with Stephen King, nosh and dish about the book together.
And, of course, no one will ever scold you for not reading the book. Still, ReadThisNext is a solid app for those who love reading but never know what to tackle next.
Free, for iOS devices.