I realized I hadn’t addressed author relationships or beta reading in my disclosure post, so I added a paragraph.
A blogger I follow raved about a book and I jumped to request it. The second I hit the button, I knew I’d made a mistake, but alas, NetGalley has no backsies. I’d completely forgotten that this blogger and I don’t have similar tastes. Sure enough, reading this book is Such. A. Slog.
I really miss having reading twins. My most similar friends from paperbackswap and GoodReads barely review any more; Mean Fat Old Bat is just about a perfect fit, but doesn’t review often.
Probably what I really miss is GoodReads. Sniff.
You know that thing where reviewers are nervous about reviewing books that go outside their own culture, in case they miss something or get it wrong? That just hit. Right after writing a long, thorough, mostly positive review.
I’ve been reading the other TBR challenge posts today and noticing that other readers have also been very happy with their hyped book*, whereas often the reaction to a hyped book is disappointment. I’m thinking of a couple of potential reasons:
— These hyped books have passed the test of time. Readers have been loving on them for quite a while, not just when they first came out.
— The hype is further away. We don’t feel as much pressure to like the book which can result in a negative reaction.
— Since the hype is further away, it’s also easier to pick a book we know is likely to work for us, without pressure.
This isn’t universally true, of course. I often see people read The Windflower for the first time and go WTF. But then, lots of really popular books have serious WTF elements to them, so that’s not surprising. (My failed read, A Knight in Shining Armor being another case in point.)
Anyway, if you’re a person who tends to respond negatively to hyped books, perhaps the key is to wait a while and see what shakes out over time. If the book is truly good, there will still be plenty of people around to discuss it with later.
* I’m not counting Wendy’s mixed reaction to Duke of Shadows because that’s a known bug.
I’m currently writing a piece for “Heroes and Heartbreakers,” and collecting titles on a particular theme. It happens to be one simply bursting with new books right now — the popularity of certain television shows likely contributing to the trend — and many are self-published. I’m finding myself reluctant to use any of the self-published titles, and I feel bad about it. I don’t want to discriminate against indie authors, and a lot of the books have very intriguing premises. But even though I’m only mentioning books, not reviewing them, I feel uncomfortable with the possibility that a book I tacitly promote could be riddled with errors, or really obvious fanfic.
I think the freedom authors get from the ability to self-publish is terrific, but right now I’m thinking of an old fake “Saturday Night Live” commercial my husband told me about, which had the tagline: “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance. Something to think about, from the people at Trojan.”