My Thesis on Review Unpopularity

Hello guys !

I know what you’re probably thinking, “What kind of non-sens are you bringing us again, this week, Fadwa?” or “What does that title even MEAN?”. My answers to those questions are respectively; Wait and see. And I DON’T KNOW, I’m winging it, okay? This is just a lame attempt to make my title fancy. What I mean to discuss today is the reason behind the fact that reviews are the kinds of post that get the least amount of views/likes/interaction in general and that’s really weird to me because most of us bookbloggers joined the community to write them reviews, to share our opinions about the books we love, and the ones we despise. So how is it that these posts don’t get as much love as, let’s say, tags and memes?

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We can all agree, before diving into serious matters, that reviews are awesome, right? They just tell you so much about 1/ The book itself, a general feeling and whether it sounds like something you’d like or not, ans 2/ The person behind the review, their personality -yes, I totally believe that a person’s personality sips through reviews, just LOOK AT MINE FOR GOD’S SAKE. They’re hilarious and I’m hilarious. They’re rambly and I’m rambly. They sometimes don’t make sense and I don’t make sense most of the time. Even to myself.-, how articulate they are, how comfortable with words they are, if they’re actually POLITE or not -A review can either make me want to talk to that person forever or make me run like buzz lightening the opposite way.

Anyway, this is just to say that if we actually give reviews a chance they have a lot more pros than cons and we can get a lot from reading them but that being said I know that theoretically most of us already KNOW these things but we still cannot bring ourselves to just sift through them. This is a topic that I know has been tackled and recycled again and again, which is absolutely normal since this is a question that we all ask ourselves but one more time wouldn’t hurt, right? I hope.

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Here I’ll try to gather as many reasons as I can think of from the top of my head as to why reviews are not as popular as other posts. Told you I’m winging it so let’s see where this leads us. I might add that these are all objective and don’t necessarily apply to me. My perspective on the matter will be in the last section.

1. Out of shear laziness

I know it. You know it. The neighbor’s dog knows it. So don’t be shaking your head at your screen like that. Especially at the end of the day, when you’ve been at school/work and you come home exhausted. I’d much rather use that valuable time reading a book or a discussion post -I really cannot turn my back on those for the life of me, no matter how tired or busy I am. I. MUST. READ.

2. You’ve read one too many reviews of the book

You know what I’m talking about. When an EXTREMELY anticipated book or a sequel of a VERY popular series comes out everyone’s on that, everyone’s reading and reviewing that so naturally at first you share the excitement and are reading MANY MANY reviews of the book because you just need somewhere to pour your feelings out. But comes a certain point when you’re just NOPE. It just all blends together and starts looking and feeling the same, even when the reviews cannot be anymore different, you just can’t do it anymore.

3. You’ve never heard of the book

This can either make you click the review or scroll down unphased. And since we’r being honest here, 90% of the time it’s the latter unless the books just keeps popping up. It’s just that you have A LOT of books to read so if the cover and/or title doesn’t speak to you then you’re not going to go out of your way to read that review. It’s a fact, my friend. FYI, I get most my recommendations from list-type posts rather than reviews.

4- The review is way too long or way too short

If the review is less than 300 words or more than than 1000/1200 words then it’s less likely to attract readers. Short reviews are generally not taken seriously, you might not like what I’m saying here, it might be harsh but I’m just saying what I’ve noticed around the blogosphere. And on the other end of the Spectrum, we have really long reviews that feel too daunting and intimidating to be read, just too much time commitment. “I DON’T NEED THAT KIND OF PRESSURE IN MY LIFE” you hear the reader say as they run away from you, chasing them with a review-essay.

5- You’re afraid of spoilers

Here again it’s a book you’re really excited about and want to read ASAP but for some reason you still haven’t gotten around to getting your hands on it yet and as much as you want to see what people think of it you’re very scared that you’ll stumble upon a major spoiler, fall on your face and never want to get up again because that goddamn review ruined you. So, that happened to you before and now that you’ve managed to pull yourself together again you’re traumatized and never want to experience that so you steer clear of reviews.

6- Reviews are simply not your thing

It is your opinion and it is totally respectable. Though, this one I don’t understand so I can’t really make a lot out of it.

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I love reviews. I really do. But it depends on the day and on my mood. There are times when I go fishing for reviews reading random ones, one after the other without ever getting bored or tired of it. But most days, I’m exhausted, which means that I find it really hard to muster up the strength to read any sort of review, my brain just despises the fact that it will have to actually read, understand and analyze written words. So what I do when I find a review for a book that I’m really interested in but I just can’t read it in that moment is that I save it for later.

I’m a very big review enthusiast and I like reading and writing them (eventhough sometimes it’s hard and I want to pull my hair out) and I like to keep them readable size wise, which for me means between 700 and 1000 words  and though I have a few where I just have way too many things to say and couldn’t keep it under 1000, it is very doable.

I know why you’re really here, you’re wondering which ones of the reasons apply to me and I’ll answer. Most of the time, it’s because I’ve heard too much of a book, or not enough. For me, it is rarely a size issue, when it is too short I can read it but I’ll rarely comment because I can’t find pertinent things to say and if it is too long I’ll still skim it and read the important parts and these are more likely to get me interacting.


That’s it until next time.

Why do you think reviews are not as loved? And what are your personal reasons for not reading them?

Hope you enjoyed, write to you soon.

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63 thoughts on “My Thesis on Review Unpopularity

  1. I think a lot of these are true when it comes to reviews. Another one for me is that there are a lot of reviews of books that I just know I’m not interested in at all. If it’s a review of a genre that doesn’t interest me like romance, NA, or contemporary – then I’m most likely not going to bother reading the review. It sounds mean, but I prefer to just read reviews for books that interest me.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh yes ! That one is true for me too. When I’m well aware of a book’s existence but don’t intend on reading it I don’t ever read reviews for but genee wise I like pretty much anything so that doesn’t narrow down reviews to read for me haha.
      It’s not mean at all, it’s common sense really 😅 also, my favorites to read are for books that I’ve read so that I can discuss them.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Reviews aren’t my favourite posts to read, though I do still enjoy reading them. And I definitely agree with being able to see somebody’s personality through them – most of mine have some sort of self-scolding tone and crossouts when I make a mistake, or ramble on too long. Plus the chattier style. But still, reviews are subjective. Where I read reviews about the books I want to read, I’ll quickly skim over the ones for books I’ve not heard of. And it’s so hard to think of comments to leave on them!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Great post! I have noticed that, I mostly post reviews but I’ve gotten into posting tags more and more, and you can definitely notice it. For me, I don’t care too much for reading reviews about books I haven’t heard of or read/don’t plan to read. It just doesn’t interest me. I agree with you I find all my books from lists not from someone’s review. But I will read reviews for books I’ve read. I like reading what others thought & if they differ from mine.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Reviews absolutely show the personality of the writer, as well as often their political beliefs. I love reading reviews for books I know nothing about, but only from people that I trust to not be an asshole in general, if that makes sense. I tend to read longer reviews more often, because you learn more about the book (and the person), and it gives me more to comment about later. I don’t really care about spoilers, though, because I’ve caught myself re-reading books and not realizing I’ve read them before until 2/3rds of the way through the book.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yaay! I’m glad imnot the only one thinking they do and from the comments everyone thinks so too 😊
      Yes totally! I have a few bloggers from which I read every review because I value and trust their opinions.
      Haha! I wish I could be that way too but sadly, if I ever read something it’s stamped on my brain, especially if I want to forget it.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Hmmm, I am reflecting on my own behaviour here and (aside from my lack of interaction on other people’s blogs in general due to lack of time/energy) I tend to read reviews for books that are really hyped, covers/titles that catch my attention but most of the times, I read reviews for books I have already read myself. So, I always make a mental note to come back to a blog post if I haven’t read it (which I then of course forget at some point), but I like to be able to engage in reviews somehow and I find that so difficult when I haven’t read the book myself. However, there are a few people who’s opinion I value and I read all their posts, even if I don’t comment on them.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This is such a great post, my twinnie, and I agree with the points you made here. It makes me a bit sad how reviews aren’t the posts that get the most interaction, especially given their importance (promotion! love!!). But if I’m thinking about it, yes, I think I come to the same conclusion as you: I don’t read reviews when I don’t know the book, or know it all too much -seen it a billion times everywhere and already read a couple of reviews and don’t feel like reading another rave/rant about the book. Also, reading reviews take SO MUCH MORE of my concentration? I don’t know why, but they do. I try to give more love to book reviews but when I’m exhausted which is a lot of the time, I tend to comment on other kind of posts, and comment more on reviews when I actually have time to read them and focus on them. Also, there are some bloggers I trust so, so much, that I read all of their reviews without exception, even if sometimes I don’t comment on them. Because I love their reviews and trust their taste in books 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This is such a brilliant post! Personally I LOVE writing reviews, sharing my thoughts and opinions and just genuinely sharing my passion for books, but when it comes to reading other people’s reviews I struggle to find the motivation for it, how strange is that!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. What an excellent post topic Fadwa! I’ve been thinking about this as well. Spending hours and hours on a review and it gets fewer views and likes than a tag about my dog’s toenail clippers! I honestly think that laziness plays a big part. People just can’t be arsed to read the entire thing unless they’re really interested or already a fan of your reviews. Well, you already tackled all the reasons up here actually :D. But it’s all true! And someone mentioning up here that the comments are much harder to come up with is true as well. Especially if it’s a book you’d never read yourself. I think a simple like is still better than ignoring the post entirely then, just to show some support I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you 😊
      Hahahaha! Omg ! But yeah I get it, though recently they’re taking me less and less time to write while tags take the most time (with all the linking, book covers etc…)
      Haha! I’m glad you think though I’m sure there are many other reasons. YES! I struggle with that too so as you said I leave a like instead of doing nothing.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. The marked popularity of tags and memes (etc) over reviews has always confused me; I rarely participate in tags or memes (obviously), and I often have to make a conscious effort not to skip over them when I see them in my news feed. (Even then, I still skip over most of them!)

    As neat as it is to learn about the people behind the blogs, I’m not exactly waiting with bated breath to hear about every single blogger’s favorite ice cream flavor or 18th random fact about themselves. I’d rather get to know everyone through conversation, you know? And let’s not go into how deeply self-conscious I am about talking about myself on my blog.

    Sometimes I enjoy the memes that involve listing books that relate to ___ subject/experience/emotion, because that can be a great way to find new books to add to my TBR, but (in my opinion) not enough bloggers elaborate on why they nominated a certain book for a specific category. I find longer-form reviews and discussions more interesting and worth my time than the single-sentence explanation you’re likely to find in this book-list memes, like, “I choose this book for the Always A Badass category because the sexy love interest is a badass.” TELL ME MORE, I always growl while clutching the edge of my desk, THAT’S NOT INFORMATIVE ENOUGH.

    Honestly, I feel like a weirdo for preferring reviews and lengthy discussions to the tags, memes, hauls, etc. *Slowly hides.*

    “I totally believe that a person’s personality sips through reviews, just LOOK AT MINE FOR GOD’S SAKE. They’re hilarious and I’m hilarious.”

    Ha! IT’S TRUE. =D

    Great post! You should wing your posts more often. =)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah I definitely understand where you come from, at some points they get repetitive. I completely agree on getting to know people through conversation, that’s the best way really.
      I think I’m guilty of that too, because sometimes it is clear in my mind why a book belongs in a certain category and I forget that a lot of people out there haven’t actually read it and there’s also the issue of repeating the same thing, I don’t like to do that because I’m afraid I’ll bore people, so I link to my review instead 😅
      I actually prefer discussions as well as some reviews to tags and memes, in writing AND in reading but I don’t think that’s the common thing haha!
      THANK YOU 😍 Haha!
      Yaay! I’ll take that into consideration hahaha

      Liked by 1 person

  10. This is such a great post Fadwa, and definitely one I agree with as well because I do notice when I post tags/TTT/WoW they seem to get a lot more comments, likes and views than my reviews, but you made some good points as to why that likely is. Sometimes I tend to avoid reviews if they’re for books I’ve been eagerly anticipating an haven’t read yet. I like going in blind and not having any clue what could happen next with the plot or the characters, not for me that’s the only reason I tend to avoid reviews, OK occasionally it’s because I haven’t heard of the book either.
    But I still enjoy writing them myself so until people stop reading them all together I’ll keep posting them! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Beth 😙
      Exactly! I don’t like knowing what’s going to happen even if it’s not really spoilery, I love the thrill of going in blind even though sometimes I just say screw it and read reviews when I can’t resist anymore haha.
      And maybe even then I won’t stop 😂 because I sometimes like to go back and read my own reviews to see if they still stand

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s all right! 🙂 I can be the same. It’s normally if I’m halfway through a book, I break and start reading the reviews because I want to know then what other people think of it. I normally good at avoiding men before I pick a book up.
        I don’t normally read my own reviews, but maybe I could go back to a few and see if they still stand. I’ll admit some of them probably don’t! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  11. I think a-lot of your points are bang on the mark, I love to read reviews especially on books I have read as well because I love to see how someone else has interpreted the book and if they liked it. The discussions that arise from them are great, however I also read them when i’m in the mood. Like you say when i’ve just come home from uni or work I’m like ‘mmm not right now’ and side step them until a day I know I can read them.
    I reviewed a book the other day which has zero comments, it felt weird that nobody would respond but then the book I reviewed was written in 2012 (i think) so I thought ok so everyone’s probably over it by now. It’s fun to get your thoughts out there anyway 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I think you nailed this perfectly! Those are pretty much all the possible reasons I don’t read as many reviews. Reviews do seem to take more focus and effort for me to read and comprehend, especially if they’re long, so yeah, when I’m exhausted I tend to skip them, and I’d rather read things like discussions. But the main reason I skip reviews is if I’m just completely not interested in the book. And that’s my problem, I don’t actually have the same taste as most of the bloggers I follow, so I’m not interested in most of the books they review. But sometimes I have just heard too much about a book and I’m tired of reading reviews for it. But you’re right that reviews do show a blogger’s personality and they also help you get to know the blogger by showing you what their taste is since reviews usually discuss what they liked and disliked about a book. So I do like them for that reason. And obviously if it does sound like a book in my genre or that I might like, then the review is helpful!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. This is such a great post,Fadwa 🙂 I agree with you on all the points especially where I don’t want to get spoiled by a certain book.I love review posts,these posts are so helpful in knowing the bloggers.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Such a relatable post! I’m totally with you on it. Like, reading review is kind of boring but discussion posts = my life ❤ I'm drafting a discussion post ABOUT discussion post, tbh. It'll be like a meta-discussion 😛

    ANYWAY, I so agree with your lists. I never read review of books I've never heard about no matter who the blogger is. And yes, I avoid spoilers because I like to go blind (but there are a lot of exceptions haha) so I tend to only read reviews after I read the books. Which brings me to point number 2. There was this phase after I read Crooked Kingdom that I just wanted to flail and fangirl and I read ALL CK reviews I could find. I got sick of it at the 5th review, I guess :')

    And yes, reaching that perfect review length is HARD! Sometimes I have only like 600 words and I struggle to find more things to say until I reach at least 800 and vice versa.

    BUUUUT, there are some bloggers who write like my favorite reviews. They're hilarious and snarky and it shows on the reviews and I read them, even if I don't know what this book is all about 😛 I guess I'm just that addicted to said bloggers' writing? haha great post Fadwa!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It can be boring at times -most of the time- but it mostly takes a lot of focus and ain’t nobody got time for that 😂 haha! I can’t wait to read that one!

      Yes I do that too, I only read the review for a book I already read OR if I’m really excited about the book and just need to know what my trusted bloggers thought of it.

      The length is hard to reach sometimes, there are books that just leave you Meh! with nothing much to say.

      I LOVE snarky and sassy review haha I can’t help but read them either. Thank you! 😙

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Great discussion 😊! I relate to a lot of the examples you gave. Especially being exhausted or not wanting to spoil a book. I think those are two of the main reasons I avoid reviews sometimes. I always want to make an effort to read reviews just because of the fact that I know how much time and effort a lot of us put into them but sometimes all I’d rather do is read a book or sleep. So, I with you on it depending on my mood or the day. I think another reason why other posts are more popular could be because of the fact that it’s easier to think of a reply to a discussion post or a tag. I feel like they make you think more or can be directly relatable. If that makes any sense.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Awesome discussion, Fadwa! Reviews are definitely posts I struggle with the most – writing and reading wise. Sometimes I’ll be excited to write a review especially if it’s a book I really loved, but most times I find it super stressful and intimidating, haha. I’m always worried about whether they’re too long or too short. I also struggle making my thoughts coherent because writing isn’t my strong point. In regards to reading them I try to read as many review posts as I can but sometimes I simply don’t have anything to add, I’m not interested the book or I want to avoid spoilers. I know how it feels to spend ages pouring over a review and it not receiving any acknowledgement though which kinda sucks so I definitely try and comment on them as much as I can.

    Also, the point about lazy is way too real 😂😂

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Such a great discussion post Fadwa! I think as book bloggers, we underestimated the amount of time and energy that goes into being a book blogger. Between reading, writing reviews, writing other blog posts, replying to comments, being active in the blogging community, social media, etc etc It is really hard to find the time to read other bloggers reviews. I do my best to blog hop and read and comment on fellow book bloggers sites, but if I get behind even a few days I will literally have 300+ emails of posts from the book bloggers I follow. I can’t possibly read and comment on every book review. There are just not enough hours in the day 😢

    The reviews I do read are…
    – Written by a close blogger friend, someone who I interact with often.
    – A book I’ve been seeing around a lot or that is hyped up.
    – A book I’m interested in reading myself.

    I know the people who are reading my reviews are most likely book bloggers who are most likely overwhelmed with their own blogs, so in my reviews I highlight key ideas so that people can skim and get the main ideas without having to read the whole review 😊

    Liked by 2 people

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  19. hahaha, I your first point is soo right. I really do make an effort to read reviews, but often fail because I’m so tired and lazy. Mostly tired because I work full time and it’s exhausting, so I don’t have the mental capacity to read a lengthy review most days. 😦 But I am much better about it on weekends!
    Numbers 2 and 3 don’t really bother me. If I’ve read a lot of reviews of a book, I’m actually more likely to read another one because I know what I’m getting into and I can skim the review if needed or quickly compare it to what others have said about the book. It’s also easier to write a comment for a review of a book I’ve already read or have seen lots of review of!
    For point 3, If I haven’t heard of the book, I will mostly likely read it if it’s from a blogger I trust or interact with regularly. I have a small circle of blogger friends who I basically read all their review, no matter what book it is! Because we’ve built a friendship and I respect their work. 🙂

    You make a lot of great points!
    My review are still the least popular kinds of posts in general, but there are exceptions. Well, a few of my Q&As and guest posts have actually done worse. lol But I don’t think my reviews are going unread and ignored, so I don’t mind too much. I’ll just take what I can get!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes! Same, actually the weekends are when I do most of my blog-hopping (more like 90% 😅)
      Oh, never looked at it that way hut now that you say it, it definitely makes sense!
      For point 3, I’m talking in general, but you’re right in what you said, I do have some blogger friends whose opinions I trust so even if I’ve never heard of the book I still read their review and based on that I see whether or not I’ll add it to my TBR.
      Thank you, I’m glad you think so 😊
      Mmm, I don’t know if any of my other posts have lower stats I’ll have to check haha! But lately my reviews have been doing better than tags which surprised me but I’m also not complaining haha. And yes, as long as reviews have SOME interaction, I’m not bothered by the lower stats.

      Like

  20. I’ve always found this such an interesting phenomenon! Truth be told, and I feel like the only person in the world on this sometimes, my review posts are frequently some of my most popular posts or on par with my others. I don’t have the most massive following so that probably helps keep things even stevens. I always try to read through other people’s reviews too but the thing that ends up putting me off the most is big blocks of text. I find it much easier to read something if images or gifs are dotted through it, which is what I do for mine. I find that just helps to encourage you on or provide some comedic relief. Heck, you could just scroll through the gifs I use and get a general feeling for what I thought about the book! But it’s definitely a shame when so many people put huge amounts of efforts into reviews and most people shy away from them. Loved this post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think that lately my reviews have gotten a lot more popular as well, so they’re catching to tags, although discussions are still the most popular 😊
      When the review is just one giant paragraph I can’t read through it, but when it’s divided into smaller ones I don’t mind it and I really do like gif reviews, they’re always hilarious!
      Thank you 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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  23. I like reading reviews as well but when it comes to books I desperately want to read, I stay away from reviews for fear of spoilers. I have been spoiled for a book quite a few times by people reviewing books who don’t put the disclaimer that their review contains spoilers! #tragic

    Liked by 1 person

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