Book Talk

Bookish Discussion: GoodReads is Hindering My Reading Experience

I know guys, I’m almost being sacrilegious, but here me out.

Instead of a book tag this week I wanted to bring up a discussion I have often: did the review cause me to be swayed before I even read the book myself?

I absolutely adore Goodreads.

I use this app daily. It provides so much content for me. I love keeping up with my reviews, what books I’m reading, what I want to read, what others are reading, and everything else bookish under the sun.

It’s great for people new to reading to help figure out what they enjoy and to start getting into this book community. It’s a platform for all in my opinion.

Where my issues lie, are the reviews.

I look crazy saying this, because I love reviews and love reading reviews, but occasionally I let myself be overtaken by them. I’ll pull up a book I’ve heard about and see that it has a 3.5+ rating. To me, that’s pretty solid (especially if its over 4!), but then I’m wondering, why did some people rate it so low?

I start casually scrolling through reviews, picking out the low-star rating ones and having to know what was said. Thus, the cycle beings. I spin into a vortex of not being able to back out of review after review. So much so, that I convince myself there’s no way I would enjoy it. When I honestly probably would.

What I’m really saying is, don’t let reviews control you.

Book friendships, are forever friendships.

Writing reviews has become a joy in my life. And I love hearing from y’all. I ride on Cloud 9 all day whenever someone adds a book to their TBR because of my review, or they chose to read a book I suggest and loved it. It’s what keeps me reading and reminds me that someone is reading my reviews and getting something out of them.

But also, when you find a book, make sure the reviews don’t overwhelm you! I’ve been trying to stay away until after (doesn’t always work) I have read the book to comment and talk about reviews because I can understand where others are coming from, but can also form my own opinions independently from someone else’s.

Now are reviews worth it? TOTALLY. I have been saved from some iffy books because of reviews, but I never want to miss out on a book because I was overwhelmed with the Negative Nancy’s.

What do you think? Do you enjoy reading reviews? Do you ever get bogged down in the cycle of reading them? Let’s talk in the comments!

13 thoughts on “Bookish Discussion: GoodReads is Hindering My Reading Experience”

  1. I used to use Goodreads a lot to work out what I want to read, and I still check the ratings. These days I check what people are saying on book blogs when deciding on a book to read more though.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I feel the same way! Sometimes reviews can be helpful if I am uncertain if I will like the content but when I see a book I absolutely adored get a bad review I question it, ha. I also try to not let bad reviews hinder me from reading a book because every reader is different!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. this is definitely A Thing for me too!! i 100% get overwhelmed and influenced by the reviews I read on Goodreads of books that I wanted to read. it’s this circle of my reading life that sometimes saves me from problematic and/or bad books but also: it could make me hinder myself in reading a book that could (possibly maybe somehow) be a new favorite?? and THAT thought kinda really troubles me sometimes. But I also don’t want to ignore the 3,5 stars rating and then realise that I should’ve listened to them but didn’t? GAH, it’s a trouble lol.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I know how you feel so much! Last year, I actually *gasp* DELETED my Goodreads account of 4 years because I was overwhelmed by reviews! … Well, now I’m going to have to build up the courage to add all my books back on a new account since I’m starting to blog. Yikes. It’s okay though, I needed a new username anyway, (the things we tell ourselves…)

    Honestly, deleting Goodreads did not stop my review problem, I still looked at them. Since you can’t possibly ignore them, I recommend just, (like you said,) taking them with a grain of salt. Just because an internet stranger disliked a book doesn’t mean you will – try to deduce whether you’ll like a book based on the preview, blurbs, synopsis, and reviews from people with similar reading taste.

    Love this post!


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