Exactly a day after gracing the Fire line, Amazon-owned Goodreads has arrived on the Paperwhite -- if you're willing to take a little initiative and download yourself, that is. And in all honesty, this was the upgrade we've been waiting for since the acquisition was first announced. It's nice functionality to have on the Fire, certainly, and folks who own multiple Kindle devices will appreciate being able to use it across the tablets and readers, but the addition of social reading means a lot more on e-readers, where things tend to be a lot more locked down, due to hardware limitations. Overall, we were a bit underwhelmed by the implementation on the HDX. With a few exceptions, Goodreads feels more like an app than an integral part of the ecosystem. Given that the Paperwhite offers a less open platform, however, we had higher hopes for the e-reader.
And indeed, once installed, Goodreads is front and center -- well, slightly to the right of center, added to the homepage toolbar, sandwiched between search and settings. If you've already tied your Amazon account to the social network -- as we did with yesterday's Fire update -- you should be good to go. Tap the "g " icon, and you'll bring up the Goodreads app, which has been styled to match the rest of the Paperwhite UI. The app's front page shows you updates across your network, including ratings and who wants to read what. From there, you can like and comment on statuses and mark those titles and "Read" or "Want to Read." Up top, the My Shelves link lets you see your own collection. From that page, you can also click through to add books from your Amazon library, a nice way of back filling all the electronic and physical books that you've read over the years. It's the next best thing to inviting people over to your place to see your real life bookshelf.