Sunday, April 29, 2012
Discussion: Reading Reviews Before the Book
Recently I've been thinking about how blogger reviews affect my experience with reading. Generally I tried not to read reviews until I had already book in order to have the purest experience. I didn't want to have other people's impressions in my mind. But lately I have been peeking at reviews...with mixed results.
For example, there was Grave Mercy, a book whose hype overwhelmed it for me. I read so many rave reviews and while I did love the book, it couldn't quite live up to all the praise I saw heaped upon it. Would my experience have been different if I had read the book before the reviews? I think so because I would have found everything more surprising.
However I found it helpful in the case of Various Positions. I read several disappointed reviews and expected to find myself similarly unhappy. But I ended up actually kind of liking it because I was prepared for what the story was actually about instead of what I wanted the story to be about based on the cover.
Another kind of experience came with The Immortal Rules, which I was not initially very excited about because I don't like vampire stories. But I liked that this seemed to be darker with the MC grappling with her new nature in addition to not being a paranormal romance. I gave it a shot and found it very good, having been prepped by the many, many bloggers who had already read and reviewed it.
In general though I will continue trying to avoid reviews before the book especially if I know I will be reading the book soon. I can just bookmark the page and return at a later date (which may be why you sometimes get a comment on a very old post :) once I've had a time to digest the book and feel up to leaving a thoughtful comment.
What about you? Do you read reviews before the book itself? How has it affected your reading experience?