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October 05, 2021

A Better Alternative to Goodreads: The StoryGraph


Many authors and readers dislike Goodreads for several reasons.

1. Amazon owns it. Yup. That explains a lot, doesn’t it?

2. It’s become a place for scammers.

In fact, on the top of the Author Dashboard, Goodreads has a message for authors that says, "we are currently investigating a small number of bad actors who have attempted a reviews-based extortion scam against some authors on Goodreads."

3. The community can be toxic. This doesn’t just go for readers/reviewers but authors behaving badly, too.

4. The website is confusing and hard to navigate.

(They recently changed how book pages look in an effort to make them more user-friendly, but the rest of the site is still the same.)

Do you want to escape one or all of this?

But do you still want to have a great platform where you can build your TBR list, review books, check out book reviews, and set up a reading challenge?

Don’t worry. I’ve got you.


Why is it amazing?

- Black woman-owned 

- Independent platform (no multibillion corporation using your data in nefarious ways)

- Website and app available for free in the App Store

- Sleek, uncluttered look

- Personalized recommendations based on your preferences

- Create your own reading challenges. For example: if you want to read specific books/themes.

- No paid placements (book recommendations are not influenced by ads and budgets)

- Your reading habits displayed in neat pie charts (see below)

- A better reviewing system

- You can rate with .5, .75, and .25, so if you’ve ever had to specify a 4.5 rating in a review on Goodreads but had to choose between selecting 4 or 5 stars, you don’t have to do that on The StoryGraph.

- A special content warning section that is extremely important. They are prominent and easy to see, not buried in reviews like on Goodreads, if a reviewer even thinks to add content warnings in their reviews.

- Easily upload your Goodreads data so you don’t lose anything!


1. On Goodreads, navigate to your “My Books” page on your Goodreads profile.

2. In the left-hand sidebar, click on “Import and Export” under “Tools.”

3. Click “Export Library.”

4. When you’re signing up for The StoryGraph, they will ask you about and walk you through the steps of importing your Goodreads data. It’s super easy!

5. If you’ve already signed up and need to import your Goodreads data, sign in, go to “Manage Account,” scroll down to “Goodreads Import.”

This is what I see when I first log-in on The StoryGraph app:

This is what my “Profile” looks like:

This is what my “stats” show for 2021:

NOTE: The “stats” button can be found on the sidebar of your Profile. You can change the stats depending on what you want to see. You can change the year and even view a specific month.


What about author profiles?

This is a new-ish platform. I personally asked if they plan to have author profiles (like Goodreads does), and I received a reply in the affirmative. I don’t know when they’ll implement this, but you can enjoy all the reader/reviewer benefits in the meantime.

This is what a book’s page looks like on the app:

NOTE: You book(s) may not have reviews here yet, but The StoryGraph is gaining in popularity, more and more people are switching over to it, and as this happens and Goodreads data is imported, your books will eventually start accumulating reviews.

They’re also working on the ability to have groups and book clubs, which will be private, invite-only to start.

If you like the sound of ANY of this, what are you waiting for?

Join The StoryGraph now!

QUESTION: Are you on The StoryGraph? Let me know if you join and what you think of it! I, obviously, love it! Do you want to sign up now? I hope so! 😀

You can find my profile here and follow me. 


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chrys - what an amazing post ... so much detailed information for us to work through. I'll definitely come back to look at The StoryGraph ... sounds fascinating ... cheers Hilary

Liz A. said...

I've never gotten into Goodreads. I've kind of wanted to, but this sounds like a better alternative.

H.R. Sinclair said...

Thanks for the new place to check out! And thanks for the uploading information. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I truly think it's a better alternative. You should check it out.

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Hilary! The StoryGraph is a neat site/app for readers.

Chrys Fey said...

You're very welcome, H.R.!

Denise Covey said...

Chrys, your blog title caught my eye as who isn't sick of Goodreads? It is so user unfriendly, at least I've found it so. If author friends didn't prod me, I'd never put my books up there. But there's so much info here on Storygraph. I'll have to come back to read it! Thank you!

Natalie Aguirre said...

Thanks for sharing an alternative to Goodreads. And thanks for sharing all the details on how to use it the best ways we can.

C.D. Gallant-King said...

This is very cool. I always like alternatives, and StoryGraph seems like a good website/system, but I'm always wary as these new alternatives rarely catch on. The original is so ubiquitous for a reason, and they're hard to dethrone no matter how many issues they continue to have (hello Facebook/Twitter). Still, I will probably check StoryGraph out.

Chrys Fey said...

That’s very true, but it took a while for Goodreads to become so ubiquitous… The StoryGraph currently has over 500,000 users, so more and more people are finding out about it and joining it…it’s catching on. I know so many readers/reviewers on IG who have made the switch. I found out about The StoryGraph because they posted about it. It’s possible that this alternative just may dethrone Goodreads, or be serious competition. If we continue to join it, use it, and talk about it (recommend it), the chances will be greater. :)

Chrys Fey said...

You’re very welcome, Natalie!

Chrys Fey said...

I’m glad the title caught your eye, Denise. Goodreads is very user unfriendly. The StoryGraph is cleaner and simpler, but it also has so many more cool tools for readers to use and enjoy.

Tyrean Martinson said...

Thanks for this great review! I am definitely going to check it out. I feel like the Goodreads site always has trouble loading, which makes me a bit nervous. It seems like it has some glitches, and it is kind of overdone. I will definitely check out Storygraph.
I've also been using Bookbub - which does have paid ads, but I like it as an author, so I think it's a good platform for highlighting books.

M.J. Fifield said...

I love that they have mood as part of the stats.

Looks like a very cool app/site. I'll have to check it out. I haven't been on Goodreads for a very long time and haven't missed it at all.

Sherry Ellis said...

Never heard of Story Graph. What a cool app! Thanks for sharing!

Loni Townsend said...

Sounds like it's a great alternative!

emaginette said...

I haven't been to Goodreads for years. Nice to know there is an alternative if I ever dive back in.

Anna from elements of emaginette

Adrienne Reiter said...

Your informative posts are motivating! Black woman owned. Not affiliated with Amazon? I'm on it. Thanks, Chrys!

Chrys Fey said...

Goodreads does end up having many glitches, and their site does down a lot.

BookBub is a great place for authors to add their books to and for reviews.

Chrys Fey said...

I’ve only been updating my reading challenge on Goodreads. But, next year, I’m not going to bother with that. For now, I’ll still post any reviews I have there, but I’ll be transitioning away from it. I don’t think I’ll miss it at all, either.

Chrys Fey said...

You’re welcome, Sherry!

Chrys Fey said...

I think so. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I don’t blame you for not going to Goodreads in years. Not at all. It seemed like Goodreads was a lot of work on top of it’s problems. The StoryGraph feels so much easier and friendlier.

Chrys Fey said...

I’m glad to hear there. I truly try to motivate in every blog post I do. :)

Lisa Thomson said...

Story Graph looks interesting, Chrys. Thanks for sharing all of this information. I actually enjoy GoodReads. I have not experienced the negative things you mentioned. I joined BookBub a while back, because other authors highly recommended it and also they dislike GoodReads. I have not taken to BookBub at all. But I will look into this new platform, for sure. Hope you're doing great.

Chrys Fey said...

I used to enjoy Goodreads a lot. Not everyone experiences the same things on social media/platforms, though, so that’s understandable. I like BookBub as another place to get reviews, but I don’t do anything there other than make sure my books are listed and try to get followers so they’ll receive the New Release emails that BookBub sends out for free, which is a great opportunity for authors.

Deniz Bevan said...

Ooh, this sounds great! Especially if I can upload my Library Thing catalogues in there. I've never felt properly represented on Goodreads because I've not been able to upload my catalogues (despite repeated back and forth with the help desk on each platform!). It'd be nice to have everything in one place!

Toi Thomas said...

Cool post. Will check it out.

Neurotic Workaholic said...

This is a very helpful post. I didn't know that there were so many problems with Goodreads, but then again I've never used it. I have used Amazon before though, and I remember how important reviews are to writers; I've also noticed that sometimes when people try to "cancel" certain authors, they'll write nasty reviews of their books even if they haven't read them, and Amazon doesn't always remove those reviews either.

Chrys Fey said...

Yes, there is the problem of people leaving one-star reviews for books on Amazon and Goodreads for certain reasons usually relating to something an author does.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Toi.

Chrys Fey said...

I don’t use Library Thing, but if you can download the info, you should be able to upload it similarly. Don’t quote me on that, though, but I do hope so.