Regardless of the size of your personal library or book collection, All My Books offers an excellent option to gain control over the books you already have, those you wish to have, and those your friends borrowed from you. With features to catalog your books with just one click, produce and display statistics of your collection, import and export book cards, and back up your catalog easily, this colorful tool is perfect for managing personal libraries of any size.
Probably lured by its extremely easy way of adding books to the catalog and the option to track loans, some users of small library services have tried All My Books as their library main management tool, with no success. All My Books is not a free tool designed for home use only, but it is not the full-fledged library tool that others expect either. Thus, you won’t find any book numbers to control your catalog and the only information you can retrieve regarding your loans is a list of friends and the books they borrowed from you. The problem is that the program is so nicely designed and is so comprehensive that when it comes to book descriptions, data retrieval management, and import/export capabilities that it is really tempting.
Populating the book catalog from scratch is probably the task that pushes most people away when thinking of using a library management tool. With All My Books, there are various ways of doing that, and most of them involve almost no typing on your side. When it comes to e-books, the program can scan your drives, extract as many information as possible from any e-books found, and create book cards that you can use as a starting point for further cataloging. Importing metadata from Amazon sites is another option, recommended for new manual entries. Using the ISBN as the main search method is the best way to guarantee a precise retrieval of the right metadata, though you can always use the title, the author, or both to locate your book. The program can perform this operation in batches if you happen to have a list of all the ISBNs in your collection.
Other interesting and useful options to help you manage your collection include graphical statistics, transferring your books to other devices, adding a physical location to each book, password protection, annotation tools, and many more. All of these features certainly make All My Books a book management tool worth using to control your personal collection. As mentioned, it lacks many of the professional tools that public library services require to perform their duties, but it is a great, attractive, and comprehensive alternative to the lame spreadsheets and databases that most of us have been using for years.