What are the best book summary websites?

Source: https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-best-book-summary-websites
Which book summary websites are worth the time? Are any of the paid sites worth the money?

Dillan DiNardo
Dillan DiNardo, Managing Editor at DeconstructingExcellence.com

The full list with details is below, but here is my personal opinion of where you should start:

1. Deconstructing Excellence: Start here if you don’t have a particular book in mind. Summaries are free, detailed, and high quality, and they incorporate other books and online resources related to the authors’ points.

2. Actionable Books & Derek Sivers: Check out these two sites next if you don’t have a particular book in mind. Actionable Books is user-friendly but not comprehensive; Derek Sivers’ site is free-form notes rather than a summary, but contains a great deal of detail.

3. Blinkist: My top choice for anyone who is willing to subscribe to a paid service. Large selection, very user friendly, high quality content, and by far the least expensive of all the paid options.

4. Farnam Street: A blog by Shane Parrish with excerpts from various books. This isn’t really a book summary site, but I would assume the goal of most book summary readers is to learn the insights from various books as efficiently as possible. Farnam Street is one of the best ways to do just that.

See below for details on 17 different book summary sites, so you can decide which one works best for your needs. Each one has its own pros and cons, varying in price, number of summaries available, summary length and detail, summary format (written/audio/video), and so on.

Details & Other Options (Free, Paid, and Related)

Free sites:

Deconstructing Excellence: Summaries are 8 – 12 pages long, on average. Each summary is also interspersed with references and links to similar content from other sources about the author’s points. Here are a few examples:



BOOKS | Derek Sivers: Derek Sivers posts his notes on each book he reads. They are free form notes, as opposed to a summary format, but there are a large number of books covered.


Actionable Books: Large selection, well organized, but less detail. Each summary has a few “gems” from the book, but doesn’t usually give you the full story.


WikiSummaries: Medium selection, variety of genres. Anyone can edit, so quality is a bit variable.


Book Video Club: Five-minute VideoScribe videos. The compressed time frame and video format means that you won’t get as much detail, but the videos are well-done and will give you the main points.

Paid sites:


Blinkist: $40/year. Very user-friendly format.

GetFlashNotes: $29/month. You also get two free summaries up front, and it’s $1 for the first month.


Readitfor.me: $29.99/month or $299.99/year. Includes written summary, audio, and video.


Soundview Executive Book Summaries: Annual subscriptions run from $99 to $229 for various combinations of features.

Knowlla: Animated video summaries for $27/month or $250/year.


BizSum.com: $69 for six months, $99/year, or $9.95 for each individual summary. Database of 2,300 summaries.


Thebusinesssource.com: $130 for two summaries per month, including five minute videos. Various other plans up to $695 for immediate access to up to 200 additional summaries.


Summaries.com: Several different pricing plans, but it ends up being $2 – $3 per summary. You can see their complete catalog here.

GetAbstract.com: Also has several different pricing plans; I’m guessing most people go with the $179 for six months option.

Amazon.com: You can search Amazon and buy book summaries individually (usually $1 – $3), or subscribe to Kindle Unlimited for $9.99/month and get some of them without paying any extra.

Related (and free):


Farnam Street: Excerpts from related books revolving around similar insights. One of my favorite sites.

Brain Pickings: Diverse variety of subjects – fiction, romance, literature, history, etc.


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