The other day, I was perusing the iOS App Store when I came across Serial Reader. The name and the promise of some assistance in getting my butt reading again was too much to pass up.

The app basically eases you into reading by delivering a chunk of a book of your choosing to the app each day at a time also of your choosing. Each bit o' book promises to not occupy more than 20 minutes of your day.

The catch? Only the classics. Why? They're public domain and, therefore, cost the app developer zero in licensing fees.

I downloaded it and have been using it for eight days and can give it a solid thumbs up.

The positives? I love the delivery method and there is a really decent selection of books, by my estimation. I chose Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet (I love Sherlock Holmes stories and there is no better place to re-start than the beginning) and it is divided into 17 chapters.

Serial Reader also provides reading stats. Kinda minimal but still cool.

There are a few downsides I've discovered, though.

First is that, at least in this book, there is a series of sequential numbers scattered every few pages. I think they correspond to the original pagination of the source book file and just weren't edited out.

Second is that there is no dictionary function. I've become spoiled by the fact that, when reading in iOS Books, I can highlight a word and get a definition. Not so here. And it would be nice especially given some older English words used in these classics that aren't in common use anymore.

Third, if I go on a tear and really get in a reading mood, I can't move ahead of what I've got. I suppose I could subscribe to a second book but I've got a good thing going and I don't want to confuse my fragile brain.

Intrigued? Check it out. Oh, sorry, iOS only.

Let me know if you join up and what you decide to read.

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Mention of the dictionary reminds me of when I was a kid and I'd be reading a book. When I didn't understand what a word was and would ask my dad, he'd tell me to "go look it up in the dictionary." As in pick up that large massive book and search for it. I'm actually glad we can look stuff up easily on our phones now; I even have a dictionary app on my phone!

I looooooove Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's books!


Worse than looking it up was when you asked how a word was spelled and your parents or teachers said to "look it up." How do you look up the spelling of a word if you don't know how to spell it?!?!

Oh, and Sherlock Holmes is AWESOME!

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