Booked til Tuesday

Life, Law & Libros

Discussion: Finding Books I Love is Hard

20 comments
I love books. I love finding stories that pull me in and take me on a journey. But I realized something: I have a hard time finding books I really love. :(

Quick review: my rating system is tied to the following types of reactions

1 star - Did NOT like

2 stars - Okay

3 stars - Liked

4 stars - REALLY liked
And we don't bother with 5 stars because I have a weird rating system that makes it all but impossible. So 4 stars from me is like the equivalent of everyone else's 5 stars.

Now check this out:



That's over 50% 1 and 2 stars for three years in a row (including this year, which doesn't have a ton of books read yet).

Now, it's not entirely the books' fault. I know I'm less discerning in what I pick up during the semester, and sometimes you just need light, silly stories, even if they're not great.

At the same time, I'm like, am I really that picky? Probably, unfortunately yes.

On the bright side, it's really cut back on my ARC envy. All I have to do is remind myself I’m incredibly picky, probably wouldn’t have loved it anyway and don’t have time (because law school). And magically...

Image source
I'd like to find more books I really love, or at least get a better hate-to-love ratio.

Do you have any tips/tricks for picking out books you know you'll love?

What about book ratings? Do you go through phases of really high or low stars?

PS - Super late to the show, but I'm signing up for the 2017 Book Blog Discussion Challenge hosted by Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction and Shannon @ It Starts at MidnightMore discussions ahead! (Hopefully on the upper end of a "1-10 – Discussion Dabbler" or more!)



20 comments :

  1. I LOVE your rating system. (Ten, forever and always.) I, too, find myself being super picky about books. A friend once actually commented along the lines of her believing it was impossible for me to give a book 5 stars on Goodreads. I think it's OK to be picky, though, especially when people look to you for honesty in your reviews.

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    1. Thank you, Mandy! (Ten is still the favorite.) I usually don't feel bad about being picky (and brutally honest), except when I pick up a book I really expected to like...and hate it. :P Win some, lose some?

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  2. oh my god! you are one tough cookie! Look at all that red! LOL (love the charts btw!) I like it :) Now when I see a 4-star here I know it's a MUST read :) I'm pretty impossible to please too. I'm a professional DNFer. So If I ever charted my reads it would be a huge 99% DNF slide and a tiny 1% read ;-) So, unlike your charts, mine are mostly good reviews because if I finish a book it's almost always because I loved it and above 3-stars Great post. Fun gifs :D

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    1. I almost wish I DNFed most of these...but my Goodreads Challenge would never leave the ground. ^^; I can usually tell within the first chapter or two whether I'll be able to stomach my way through, good or not. Dropping them in the middle would decrease my 1 and 2 stars, though... Good idea! :)

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  3. I'm like your opposite. I think my outlook on life is pretty much always "look for the good" and this translates to my reading as well (which isn't to say that you have a negative outlook on life---just that maybe yours doesn't translate quite as perfectly). I used to stress over the fact that I rate too easy, but I finally determined that I don't mind being positive when it comes to my books---I always give both positives and negatives in my reviews so anyone can see the things that I wasn't as keen on and determine how much those would affect them.

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    P.S. I'm excited you're joining us for the challenge!

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    1. Thank you, Nicole! I don't mind giving low ratings so much as...I feel like I've gotten really cruddy at picking out books I'll like. ^^; Then again, natural critic plus Writing Arts major is probably a perfect recipe for a picky reader, haha!

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    2. Lool I was about to say that I was her opposite as well! I can't seem to stop giving out 3+ stars! I've reached the point where I really really would like some book I could hate and then write (at last!) a negative review about it. But of course, i wouldn't knowingly go read a book I know I'll hate. XD I hope you find a book you love soon Kel!

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    3. Haha, that's not a bad thing at all! Although 1-star reviews can sometimes be fun. (I'm quite proud of my "Emperor's New Groove" gif-filled one on Frankenstein.) Thank you!

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  4. I feel like I am the pickiest reader in the blogosphere sometimes, watching people rave over books I merely find ok. But I do have five star reads sometimes. I think the key is try everything and occasionally hit. Down side is occasionally you get a horrible read in the process.

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    1. Very true! What is it: you have to kiss a bunch of frogs to get a prince? I'm torn between putting a Grumpy or Eeyore or Oscar sticker in my sidebar proclaiming "Picky Reader" or shouting "Challenge accepted!" Haha!

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  5. Do you read reviews before picking up books? Sometimes I think it helps to skim some reviews and pick up both the good and bad points people are pointing out. Sometimes I'll look at the negatives and think, "Oh that wouldn't bother me - I'll read it anyway!" Or other times I'll read a negative point and think, "That's a huge deal breaker for me, I'll have to skip this book."

    I'm pretty picky about the books I'll actually pick up.

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    1. Good suggestion, Ashley! In general, I read lots of reviews (and still wind up disliking books everyone else gave 5 stars, lol), but I think I've shirked that habit a bit, especially during the school year. Time to get back to researching! And hopefully find a few more authors/series I can (almost) guarantee I'll like going forward. :)

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  6. When I get caught up in the hype, I find I'm rating everything 3 stars or less. When I do a little research, I pick up on the things that are deal-breakers for me, and have gotten much better at avoiding books I won't enjoy. It's not a perfect science though, and sneaky 2s still find their way into my TBR occasioanlly! Haha

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    1. The hype machine is a dangerous monster indeed. Time to combine super-extra-pickiness with lots of research! And/or go through all the unread books on my shelves so even if they're not great, I'll feel productive and less guilty about getting new ones, haha. Thanks, Kelly!

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  7. I actually have the opposite problem haha. I always feel like I'm overly generous with my review and that's because on average I only read about 20-30 books a year and I know all the components that are likely to make me enjoy the book. I also find that my mood has a huge influence on my reading, it's why it takes me so long to pick a book to read.

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    1. That's amazing, Lois! It sounds like you have this down to a science. :) I've been trying to read more books per year and overcome/work around reading moods, but 20-30 3 or 4 star books sounds awesome!

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  8. This is often me, too. I give the majority of the books I read 3 stars. Sometimes I feel like I'm being too grouchy or picky, like people will think I'm being stuck up in my opinions because it takes a lot to impress me. But I can't help it! And I'll be honest about if they were wonderful or not.

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    1. Honesty is a good thing! Most of the time...but definitely with books. It's a subjective experience, and ultimately you're reading for you, right? Still, it would be nice if we could magically only pick out books we love, haha.

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    2. I find that that's what is so great about finding other reviewers who seem to have the same tastes as I do. Most of the time, if they like a book, I feel like I can trust their opinion.

      I love reading reviews for books anyway! I probably spend as much time reading reviews as I actually do reading the books. :D

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    3. Finding reviewers of the same mind can be a godsend (except for those rare instances when their 5-stars flop with me ^^). And yay for book bloggers and all their reviews!

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