As an author I love to read other authors' books as well. I love to read a book that have me hook from page one to the ending, and since there are millions of book out there, I like to choose a book by it's reviews. I hate to pick a book and then once I read it, I get bored and I feel like the book is dragging on. But how reliable are the reviews. I have found some books that's are 4 or 5 stars and found out that It wasn't a good book to me as well as some of the reviews that gave it 1 or 2 stars. I try to look at the low rating to see what is bad about the book(if any) and compare to 4 stars that some reviewers have given the same book.
I think the rating system with 1 to 5 stars or similar rating systems are a bit vague and subjective. I have a Goodreads account though and I continuously rate many books there. I usually pick books by reading both good and bad comments about them, so I can have a wide idea of the pros and cons of them.
I think that different people are attracted to different books and the way they rate them has to do with their mood while reading them, their interests and the feelings these books caused them. And there is also the problem of spoilers. Some people who give 1 or 2 stars (in a 1-5 scale), to specific books, contain spoilers in their reviews without warning readers about them. And you go there to read their comments and, boom(!), now you know the ending of the book or the death of a certain character.
Overall, I think it's better to choose a book by its summary and author first and read a limited number of both praising and negative reviews on it. You should rely more on your opinion and book taste first, and when you're done with it, go ahead in book blogs and discuss about it in the longest extent. :-)
The trouble is, you have no control over those that buy your books. You can ask them to leave a review but not many do (unless you have dozens of family and friends who do it for you but that isn't a good indicator as to how good the novel is!)
I just read the preface and if I like it I buy it then review it.
When choosing a book, I don't give much importance to stars. I place more empasis on the content of the review. The part where the blogger explains why they liked the book.
I actually find that a lot of people who give bad reviews haven't even read the whole book. They read a chapter or two, don't like it and write a bad review. There are plenty of books that I can't get into, but I don't write them a bad review based on the fact that i simply wasn't interested in the story. It doesn't mean it's a bad book- just not for me. I also find that some people feel very empowered by saying negative things. It makes them feel important. Ours is the first generation that has the ability to have their voice heard without actually having to say something to the person's face and it's much easier to trash someone anonymously. I have also had a lot of glowing reviews and thankfully they weren't from my friends. At the end of the day, it's all just based on someone's opinion and personality.
I tend not to pay a whole lot of attention to reviews, but do read them on occasion. The sample preview of the work is more important to me. The response of others is just too subjective. There seems to be a growing trend on judging reviewers for their reviews, hence, judging the author of any given work. I wish Amazon and other networks would eliminate the star system and let the reviews stand on their own merit. Too often I read that negative reviews validate the positive reviews, as though the author has control of reader response either way.
Yes, when choosing a book, I am influenced by its reviews. However, as you suggest, this method of selection (as any method of selection) isn't foolproof. Bill
I always look at the preview and see if I'd be interested in reading more. If I can't see a preview I look at the synopsis. I only look at the ratings because I'm curious. :) I know everyone has a different opinion, so I just don't pick one based on ratings.
I'm going to be quite honest and say I completely ignore reviews. I know what I like, and choose books *I* want to read by browsing the book's blurb and reading the sample provided, i.e. Amazon etc. I don't give a toss what someone else thinks about a book... I do however post the odd review of books I think need a boost in sales, but only because so many other people place great store in number of reviews and how many darn stars. ;)
I'm new to the blog just want to introduce myself: My new release is "Treacherous the Beginning" at www.treacherousthebook.com my blog is enjil-washington.blogspot.com
I am a new author check out my book "Treacherous the Beginning" at www.treacherousthebook.com
or blog me at enjil-washington.blogspot.com