Zelophehad’s Daughters

Books, Mormons, and Statistics

Posted by Katya

If you like books and statistics, you’ll love LibraryThing. They have 554,277 members who have cataloged 33,647,263 books of which 3,850,295 are unique works not shared by anyone else on the site.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s [Philosopher’s] Stone is owned by more people than anyone else (37,254 copies, 3 of which are mine), although more people have posted reviews of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (704 reviews, with an average rating of 4.43 stars out of 5).

As you might expect, J.K. Rowling is the top author in terms of number of copies of her books owned, but Stephen King is second, even though his top individual book isn’t even in the top 200.

Oh, and one more thing (which is actually the whole point of this post): The Book of Mormon is at the top of a list based on another site-wide statistic. Care to guess what that statistic is?

9 Responses to “Books, Mormons, and Statistics”

  1. 1.

    Thanks for posting about statistics, Katya. It warms my heart to see.

    A few guesses:

    Book its owners read most frequently?

    Book most often acquired for no cost?

    Highest variance in ratings (lots of 1’s and 5’s)?

  2. 2.

    Is it most often acquired but least often finished?

  3. 3.

    I like the rating variance guess. From 1-5, I can see it getting lots of -10’s and lots of 100’s.

  4. 4.

    Books people have received but never read?

  5. 5.

    Come on, just tell us the answer!

  6. 6.

    I see it on GoodReads a lot as people’s “favorite book.”

  7. 7.

    It is, in fact, that people disagree about it most — it has the largest deviation in ratings (see http://www.librarything.com/zeitgeist/books).

  8. 8.

    it’s also consistently in Shelfari’s most discussed and top rated books.


  9. 9.

    Dave –

    That’s really interesting. I’m curious to know how it happens to be “top rated” in Shelfari and “highly contested” in LibraryThing. Are there more people giving it a favorable rating on Amazon / Shelfari, for some reason? Fewer people giving it a negative reading? I’ll have to look around and see what I can find out.

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