Parents' Guide to

Bookmate. Books and audiobooks

By Patricia Monticello Kievlan, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Confusing content, privacy issues limit e-reader.

App iPhone , iPod Touch , iPad , Android Free to try Books
Bookmate. Books and audiobooks Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this app.

Community Reviews

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Privacy Rating Warning

  • Personal information is not sold or rented to third parties.
  • Personal information is shared for third-party marketing.
  • Personalised advertising is displayed.
  • Data are collected by third-parties for their own purposes.
  • User's information is used to track and target advertisements on other third-party websites or services.
  • Data profiles are created and used for personalised advertisements.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say Not yet rated
Kids say (1 ):

If you're looking for an app to help you manage your reading and listening list, keep looking. Even with a paid subscription, the selection in Bookmate. Books and audiobooks is pretty limited, and searches for common books (like recent bestsellers or major titles like Harry Potter) come up short. Instead, these searches more often result in a list of tangentially related items, like podcasts, fanfic, and unauthorized biographies. It's not clear where this content is coming from. There's a decent selection of public-domain classics, but it's not clear how or why this selection of books and audiobooks and podcasts turns up here. If a book doesn't show up in a search, the app mystifyingly invites users to upload the book on their own, which seems like an odd thing to expect from users who are looking for new books in the first place. Perhaps most importantly, as an e-reader, it's is actually pretty hard to use: It's surprisingly tricky to get the navigation menus to appear on screen while you're reading a book.

Finally, this app feels uncomfortable from a privacy perspective. Unless you choose to read privately, your book shelves and reading history are shared by default, both with other users and with publishers whose content appears on the platform. Overall, look elsewhere for an app to effectively find and enjoy digital media.

App Details

  • Devices: iPhone , iPod Touch , iPad , Android
  • Subjects: Language & Reading : reading
  • Pricing structure: Free to try (free trial, then $1.99/mo. or more depending on subscription)
  • Release date: January 28, 2020
  • Category: Books
  • Publisher: Bookmate
  • Version: 8.7.1
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 11.0 or later.
  • Last updated: February 12, 2020

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