Speed Read: Crush Your TBR with These 5 Apps

This series is about speed reading. Get these apps and stay on the fast track. Next week we'll cover technique, so come prepared.

Check Them Out | Library Apps

Tap into your local library's collection of books at any time by using free mobile apps. The top Three Free Library apps are as follows:


By Overdrive, Inc.

Libby is included on this list first mainly because of it's popularity. The name recognition of this app is incredible with all things considered. They did a great job choosing a name Libby, Library. It has a ring to it. People have caught on and always mention Libby in conversations like these.

As an avid reader, and someone who uses all of these apps I can tell you this app will have no bearing on the quantity of books you read. This is a lite version of Overdrive, with a cuter design. You can just download the original Overdrive app.

However, if you feel motivated to read because of the beautiful design, spunky colors, or multi-ethnic avatars... by all means use the app.

From this point on, every app is a must have. Use them together to maximize your time and reading efforts.

Dynamic Duo

Overdrive and cloudLibrary are very different apps. One is noticeably more sophisticated than the other, but used together they make a powerful team. They usually don't have the same books available. Therefore, you can split your list in two and check out the books you need in the formats available.

For instance, you want to read three books. The Overdrive app has two of the books available in audiobook format and the third is unavailable. The cloudLibrary app has all three available in an eBook format.

You can go about this in two ways:

1. Check the two available books out with Overdrive and the last book with the cloudLibrary app.

2. Check all five books out. Read one book with your eyeballs, and read the other 2 alternating between the audio and eBook format.

It's up to you how you. Either way you'll have access to five immediately and the flexibility in choosing how to read them for free.

Pros of using free library apps:

❇ They're Free

❇ Access to the different formats make for a better user experience

❇ No late fees- The books are pulled from your shelf once they expire

Cons of using free library apps:

❇ If you have technical difficulties which result in any changes to your loans/bookshelf and lose a book. Your name (library account number) will be added to the end of the waiting list.

You have never felt frustration until you're 75% finished with a book and have to wait 45 days to finish because Tim, Rachel, and Kenny are having their turn. I can't.


By Overdrive, Inc.

App Features:

❇Read eBooks

❇Listen to Audio books. You can control the narration speed.

❇Watch Videos +movies on the mobile app

❇Multilingual user experience

Available For:





❇Windows 8 +10

❇Kindle Fire HD

Overdrive created a K-12 grade reading app for students called Sora. If you have little ones you can learn more about here. Check with your school administrators to find out if your child's school offers the app or recommend they give it a try.


By biblotheca

App Features:

❇Read eBooks

❇Listen to audio books. You can control the narration speed.

❇Multilingual user experience

Apps Available For These Devices:




❇PC/ Mac

❇Kindle Fire

cloudLibrary has a ton of cool features like scanning library books similar to the Barnes and Noble app. In an effort to keep this post short we'll talk about those later.

Paid Subscriptions| Scribd and Kindle

Scribd has revolutionized the way I read. I loooove this app. It's hard to occupy the same space with an Amazon company without being overshadowed, especially Kindle. Yet, somehow Scribd has managed to do just that.

You know I couldn't write that without getting to the heart of it.

This is what's happening:

Scribd is a limited version of Audible (which didn't make this list) and an improved version of Kindle Unlimited, at a great price. Omg, this is too good. This was a brilliant move on Scribd's part! I'm a nerd🤓.

I recommend you use Scribd for casual reading and getting a good sense of what you want to buy. When you become a member you unlock "exclusives" which will help you with this process. Blinkist one of the Membership Exclusives provides key ideas from important books in just 15 minutes.

Finally, there's the Kindle app. You should always have this app on your device. AT ALL TIMES. The Perks of having this app are endless. Most of them are advertised. Like the one below, but many of them aren't. You have to trust me on this one. I'll have to do a separate post on the power of the Kindle app. In the meantime the app is free, and your library apps can auto sync.

Pro Insights + Tips

❇Scribd is better than Kindle Unlimited.

❇You'll get more bang for your buck in every way when you choose to become a Prime Member rather than opting into Kindle Unlimited.

❇Furthermore, if you want to buy an eBook. It's best to buy through the Kindle app for reasons we will discuss later.


By Scribd,Inc.

App Features:

❇ The best books and audiobooks

❇The best articles from top magazines

❇"The world’s largest document library, which includes official government reports, academic dissertations, detailed scientific studies, and more."

Apps Available For These Devices:



Leave it to me to test their limits. You do not get unlimited access to the books and audiobooks. It's a drag. You will have to wait once you hit this undisclosed limit. The restricted books will have an "Available On' disclosure next to the title with a date.

On multiple occasions Scribd has pushed availability back for months at a time. If you're bookish,and keep a TBR, this "flaw" will slow your reading down significantly. It just takes the wind right out of ya'.

But they do have the best books, and magazines so I continue to pay them every month. When you use this link we both get a free month. Click here!


By Amazon Mobile, Llc

App Features:

❇Millions of books and audiobooks ( at an additional fee)

❇The best articles from top magazines

❇ The best in app reading experience

Apps Available For These Devices:



❇PC/ Mac

❇Select Nook Devices

Amazon is awesome.The Kindle app is better. Become a Prime member by clicking here, then you'll get your first month free!

Kindle is the industry leader, and it's only a matter of time before disabling this app isn't allowed. It's the best for so many reasons, and all of then cannot be covered in an article like this.

I am never without these 4 apps. Being bookish, and speed reading is a lifestyle. These apps work together to help you seamlessly read the books that interest you quickly. Download, and organize them on your device today. Next week, we'll break down the techniques.

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