When you’re reading a book and think maybe you’re crazy for hating it…

I’ve been reading Emily Giffin books for ages (did anyone else think it was GRiffin??) I loved Something Borrowed and Something Blue, Baby Proof and Love The One You’re With were enjoyable reads, and I did not at all like Heart of the Matter. So when Where We Belong was released, I wasn’t in any big rush to read it but I had it on hold at the library and it came in about a month after being released.

Now, I love Goodreads. It’s great for organizing all the books I’ve read, own, and want to read (yes, I was that person who scribbled book titles onto random scraps of paper and then had to google things like “let the northern lights erase your name” to remember what it was for.) It’s also great for reading reviews. The default sorting system of reviews is described as this:

The default sorting algorithm on Goodreads uses a variety of factors to determine the most interesting reviews. The recipe for our special sauce is a closely guarded trade secret, but the ingredients are: length of the review, number of people who liked it, recency of the review, popularity of the reviewer (i.e. number of people who have liked reviews by that person across all books).

Whatever that algorithm is, it works. Despite the high rating of Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (4.06), the first review gave it 1 star and had I looked at and read that review, I might have saved myself  870 pages of “omg I hate myself for reading this.”

Back to Where We Belong… As I was reading and not really liking it, I kept checking Goodreads reviews to see if I was crazy for not liking this book. All the reviews were really good so I kept going and finally when I got to the end and still hated the book, I thought no way was this book that good, I can’t possibly be the only person who did not like it. So I went through a ton of reviews and only a handful were negative. Weird, but whatever, maybe I was being hyper critical?

Jump ahead three months and the first handful of reviews are still very positive but there’s now a fair amount of 1-3 starred reviews on the first page. Thank god.

Really, this a long winded post saying that you should give Goodreads reviewers time to read the book. Probably the first people reading and reviewing the book are eager Emily Giffin lovers and will be giving it a positive review.  Go figure.

And if you’re into crazy drama, you can read through:

Authors Behaving Badly: How I Pissed Off Legions of Emily Giffin Fans

2 thoughts on “When you’re reading a book and think maybe you’re crazy for hating it…

  1. I got your trackback to my blog (lol) and thought I’d comment at least in why Where We Belong is rated so well… the negative reviews were deleted. Anything that mentioned “the drama” – even if it still reviewed the book – was mostly taken down off the site leaving mostly positive reviews. Then there’s also the fans that were encouraged to review and help negate the negatives that the book was getting.

    For the most part Goodreads is still a better baseline than Amazon reviews though but I’ve scratched my head a few times too when reading over reviews 🙂

    Happy reading and I hope I didn’t creep you out by commenting ha!

    • Even on Goodreads? I thought maybe with their “system” that those crazy fans wouldn’t be able to skew it as much. Anyway, I hope that everything has calmed down for you – I still can’t believe that actually happened! Though, I did take a look at her facebook page after reading your blog and she does seem a little… Well, let’s just say I won’t be following her anytime soon 🙂

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