Why I Love Reading Negative Reviews // it’s controversial opinion time!

Instead of writing a book review today because somebody didn’t finish the book she was supposed to I will be writing a sort of discussion post about negative reviews. I think this is a nice compromise, especially since I feel like it’s been quite a while since I’ve done a post like this due to laziness being busy.

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I have a confession to make. 

I like reading negative reviews.

Now it’s out there in the world. Negative reviews are like a guilty pleasure for me. I like reading them and although they’re hard to write because I don’t want to be mean or risk the possibility of the author stumbling upon my review I’m just such a nice person.

But also, writing and reading negative reviews are so much funThe best negative reviews are the ones for hyped up books that literally everyone has been raving about. Why? Because they’re being completely honest about their feelings without letting the opinions of others hold them back.

I live for honest opinions. That’s kind of why I started blogging. I like seeing what people truly think of a book. I like it when bloggers forget sugar-coating and just start ranting and throwing shade at a book.

hyungwonmeme2

me when someone starts trash talking a book

Negative reviews bring out the inner critic in us all. We nitpick and mention everything that annoyed us about the book whether it be the bland writing, slow storytelling, 2D characters, overused tropes, etc. we can all somehow relate to negative reviews in one way or another because we have all read a mediocre book in our lives.

I love talking about the things I didn’t like in a book. I might’ve not liked the book, but I oddly get a lot of satisfaction from sharing why I didn’t like it. I think this is due to all of my feelings about the book accumulating as I read the book, and when I write my review I am finally able to pour out all of my feelings on the book.

Sometimes I’m not even sure what my thoughts on a book are until I start talking about the things I didn’t like. That’s when I realize that the book I originally thought was a five star read was actually a three star read! It’s very interesting how writing a review for a book can change my rating and overall thoughts on it.

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me when i try and make any decision in life

Let’s not forget the absolute pure joy I get when I find a negative review for a book that everyone has loved besides me. It makes me feel less alone and plus I can talk about what I didn’t like about the book to someone that has the same thoughts on it.

Besides being able to relate to a negative review, they’re also super important. I don’t know about you but I take a lot of consideration for what books to buy from reading reviews. I don’t want to waste my money on something that ends up being mediocre at best. I’m able to read mostly great books because I take reviews into consideration when I’m choosing a book to buy and read.

So, in conclusion, I love reading negative reviews because:

  • unpopular opinions are so much fun
  • they help me decide what i should read
  • they help keep me far away from books i would’ve otherwise read
  • it shows that book reviews share their honest opinions

I can’t express enough how important honest opinions are. If you don’t like a book, don’t be scared to talk negatively about it! I know that I myself have been hesitant in the past because of the way some authors have chosen to act towards negative reviews written about their books, but we shouldn’t let this keep us from writing negative reviews for a book we didn’t like!

Negative reviews help authors themselves as well, if they choose to read them. I know that authors reading reviews of their books is a controversial topic, but I’m okay with it overall as long as the author doesn’t say anything bad towards the reviewer and makes them feel uncomfortable for sharing their opinion.

Negative reviews are important for authors because they let authors know what they can improve on in their writing, world-building, storytelling, and characters. Without negative reviews, there’s no way for an author to know what they should be improving on!

I myself like to hear critiques and constantly ask people to critique me and tell me their honest opinion when I show them my work because I’m constantly striving to better my writing. I can’t better my writing if nobody tells me what I can do to make it better!

But, there is a thin line between a negative review where you spread your opinion and a negative review where you’re bashing an author and their work. That line should not be crossed. Respect authors because writing a book is hard. They’ve spent countless hours losing sleep over that book you just made fun of, so have fun writing a negative review, but don’t write a review slandering them and their work. That’s just not cool.

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What are your opinions on negative reviews? Do you like writing them? Reading them? Do you not like them at all? Let me know!

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68 thoughts on “Why I Love Reading Negative Reviews // it’s controversial opinion time!

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  5. Em

    When I’m picking a book to read, the first thing I do is read the negative reviews. Then I look at the issues people had with the book and go “is that something that I wouldn’t like or that would bother me?”
    Also, when I didn’t like a book, I always check them out too to see if other people didn’t like it for the same reasons as me.

    Liked by 2 people

    • thebookprophet

      Those are definitely great things to do! Reading negative reviews prior helps filter out the ones you would’ve not liked and reading bad reviews after gives you a new insight on things you might’ve missed before!

      Liked by 1 person

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  7. arubunwritten

    Totally agree about getting honest opinions and the absolute feeling of *joy* when you find out that someone hates a book as much as you did and that you’re not alone! I think because I’m quite a harsh critic, I find it easier to review the negative rather than the positive, but I do try to be as objective as possible and recognise when it’s something that I simply didn’t like. And you’re right, it’s important to get a fuller picture of what a book is like rather than endless praise regardless of the flaws!

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      Endless praise does kind of let a book’s actual contents get lost. It’s like when a book is super hyped but then there are actually a lot of problems with it that nobody mentioned in their positive reviews.

      Like

  8. I love negative reviews! In fact, before putting a book on my TBR, I’ll look out for the review with the lowest star rating on Goodreads. If I find something in the review that I will really get annoyed at, I won’t add it. It’s also so much fun to read them, especially if they’re full of emotions. My friend once wrote “I’m done!! I’m too old for this shit!!” LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I love negative reviews too. Sometimes because I agree with them, sometimes because what the reviewer has disliked I’ll actually enjoy and other times because it’s interesting to see something I loved from a different perspective (even if I don’t agree with it).

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      It’s always great to see different opinions about a book even if you don’t agree with them 🙂 That’s what negative reviews are good for.

      Like

  10. Writing negative reviews is difficult because I’m often too brutal (also in real life when I have to say something I don’t like) but I do like to read them and see if it would be something that would put me off as well… slow-burning, no surprises, no character-development, unlikeable ending.. well count me out as well :-). Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      Haha – it’s hard to not be brutal when writing a negative reviews sometimes but we have to remind ourselves that the author is only human. Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. StackingMy BookShelves

    I also like negative reviews. Not every book can be the best there has got to be some differences and I like to see what people don’t like about them. It makes some great reading and what to expect from the book.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      Exactly! Not all books can be perfect. Actually – no book is perfect – there’s always going to somebody that didn’t like it for one reason or another and that’s completely fine. Knowing what to expect can sometimes be great when going into a book 🙂

      Like

  12. I agree about negative review, I like reading them too. When I need to decide on a book, I will read the best and the worst reviews. Sometimes the bad ones will tell me there’s a certain trigger or trope I also happen to mind. That’s important! And absolutely yes about the hyped books.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      I do the same thing! It’s good to read both so that you’re able to weigh the good and bad to see if you might like it or not. It helps cut out a lot of bad apples.

      Like

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  14. I’m so glad I’m seeing more people speak up for their love of negative reviews! I feel like when I first started blogging, all the bloggers I followed really poo-pooed negative reviews, but for me, when I would read a blogger who said they didn’t post negative reviews, I felt like it was pointless to read their blog, because I knew the reviews would always say they liked the book, so what was the point of reading them in the first place? Negative reviews really help me whittle down my TBR list, because they help me avoid things that I don’t like in books, so I save myself a lot of potential book heartache by reading them. Negative reviews are great and important!

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      I feel like when I started blogging, bloggers weren’t as open about their ‘controversial’ and ‘negative’ feelings, but that’s changed a lot in recent months! It is pointless to follow a blog where the blogger doesn’t share their negative reviews on books because we all have them, some more frequent than others. It’s a natural and normal thing that comes with reading. Some books will be hits and some will be misses – as bloggers it’s kind of our responsibility to let our followers know whether the books were worth the read or not.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I agree! I feel like avoiding writing negative reviews does our readers a disservice. I think the point of blogging isn’t just marketing; it’s providing our honest opinions about books to help readers.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. I so agree about negative reviews… I love them, lol. They help me so much! While in the end I may not agree if I still read the book I love being able to see why a reader thought that (for my own secret purposes as a writer myself!) I honestly try NOT to read books I want to trash but when I do I tend to go all out (3 star reviews are the hardest to me… that is a post in itself) I agree though too that I don’t want to trash an author. evaluating their blood, sweat and tears can be heart breaking enough… no need to tear into them. ❤ Love this discussion!

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      Yes – seeing why a reader didn’t like a book helps when you are trying to write a book yourself. You can use that to your advantage when your writing so that you can improve your writing! 3 star reviews are so hard omg – I’m always stuck in the middle haha! Thanks for reading!!

      Like

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  17. I enjoy reading a negative review as much as I like writing one. There’s something cathartic about getting all your frustration out about why you didn’t like something, and I think negative reviews can be highly entertaining and super honest. Love the post!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. I definitely agree with this entire post!!! Negative reviews are my favorite to write, because it feels great letting off some steam. I also like giving my blog/review readers a different opinion, especially if I’m talking about a hyped up book with a bajillion 5-star reviews! Annnnnd I love reading them, too. I definitely have that expression on my face (like in your GIF) every time I see trash talk (the funny kind, not the disrespectful kind). xD

    – Aimee @ Aimee, Always

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      Yes omg sometimes it’s so hard to keep it all in so writing a negative review really does help let off some steam! Sometimes it can get a bit boring to see all five star reviews – sometimes even just a four star review is a relief to see because there’s someone out there that didn’t like everything about the book. hahaha, i’m a huge fan of funny trash talk

      Like

    • thebookprophet

      Some can be very harsh! I have been able to read negative reviews for my favorite books before but sometimes they’re really harsh and I start feeling protective of my precious favorite book so I stop reading the review for my own good (and the reviewer’s) xD

      Liked by 1 person

  19. I sooo agree with you! It’s not possible for everyone to fall in love with the same book, and in my opinion, expressing negative review is always fine unless and until you bash the author, then… Anyway, you are not like that, so you’re definitely in my good books! *evil laughter*
    I don’t know what am I even saying…
    Great post!!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. I agree, to some extent. I for one hate writing negative reviews, and even when I do I try to also show the good (since I also show the bad in the 4 star reviews or so). I value honesty so, so much though. As long as the reviewer isn’t being necessarily mean or hateful, I will definitely have no problem with it. I’ve written my share of negative reviews in the past and I’ll keep writing some, probably, but I reckon it’ll still suck every damn time…
    Great discussion post! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Jennifer Schaber

    I HATE writing negative reviews. I have to go through and make sure that my wording is “just right”, BUT they are a necessary evil. There have been plenty of popular books that I was lucky to finish because I couldn’t stand them. I’m looking at the reviews of others thinking “Did we read the same book?” The other reason I’m careful is that occasionally I’ve had fans of the book bash me and my review because I didn’t share their opinions. That just ticks me off. I do enjoy finding that needle in the haystack that felt the same way I did though. It brings me so much joy. When looking for a new book, I tend to read the 2 and 3 star reviews before making a purchase decision because I feel that they are the most honest.
    Thanks for the post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      I usually spend more time to make sure my wording is just right when i write positive reviews, actually haha! i feel more compelled to write a stellar review with proper grammar and such i guess? i don’t know – we all have our positive points. See, I hate when people bash someone for their opinions on a book – that is just rude! Reading the negative reviews can definitely keep you from purchasing and reading a book you would’ve hated. Thanks for reading 🙂

      Like

  22. I relate to this way too much. It’s often easier for me to think up specific examples of a book’s negative characteristics than the positive ones, and ranting about books is just so. Much. Fun. And, like you mentioned, I love reading other people’s negative reviews when I’m in the minority of those who disliked the book. It feels great to have my opinion validated!

    Liked by 1 person

  23. OMG! I love reading negative reviews too because for some reason they seem more realistic haha. Another guilty pleasure of mine is reading negative reviews on a book I really liked to refute all of their arguments (in my head, not to them).

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      They do seem more realistic and honest! Hahaha yes – I like reading them too but sometimes they point out things I didn’t notice before and I end up realizing problems I hadn’t noticed before.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. paperbackdreamer

    You aren’t the only one!!
    I love negative reviews, they are so much fun to read someone ranting, they are also equally as much fun to write, my negative reviews always tend to be a lot longer and easier to write than positive ones too xD

    Liked by 2 people

    • thebookprophet

      Yes, I relate so much with writing negative reviews! For some reason, when I’m writing a negative review the words flow better.

      Like

  25. It’s good to see both sides of a coin (or a book in this case) because no matter how much we might love it.. there are people out there who hated it and probably with as valid reasons as us.. I find it helpful to read not only the raving reviews but the bad ones it helps me decide if I should invest my time on a book or not.

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      It’s definitely great to read both good and bad reviews about a book when you’re trying to decide if you’re going to buy/read it or not. Even with books I love I like reading negative reviews to see what things someone might not have liked that I did. Thanks for reading 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Ah, I love this post, Savannah! I am a HUGE lover of reading negative reviews, and writing them as well. I think that whenever I write my negative reviews, I tend to get a bit salty and roast the book haha. (But I always make sure to not be bashing the author — roasting a book to me is okay, but roasting an actual person is not.) I think that most of the negative reviews I like to read are the salty roast ones?? 😂 But I also love rants and I think negative reviews are super super important, for authors (if they choose to read them) and for other readers, especially if they’re talking about problematic aspects!

    Love this post, Savannah! 💕

    Liked by 2 people

    • thebookprophet

      What I love about your negative reviews is the fact that you never roast the author – some people aren’t able to differentiate the two and end up roasting the book AND author, which I just can’t stand for. Yes, especially with problematic aspects, negative reviews are important so that authors can learn from their mistakes and others can be more aware of problematic parts in books. Thank you for reading!!

      Liked by 1 person

  27. Oh wow! This! haha

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who likes to read negative review~ I agree with all your points.
    Recently when I bought some new books, and decided to ignore some of the negative reviews that I read for that book, and ended up regretting buying the book so much. And it was so expensive too. It cost USD 16, which is approx. RM 62 in my currency.
    Should never ignore negative reviews haha

    Great post 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • thebookprophet

      Yes, it sucks so much when you get a book that you’ve been hearing iffy things about but weren’t sure if you should still get it or not and the reviews ended up being right. Books are expensive! It costs you a lot of money when you purchase a book and it ends up not being worth it. Thanks for reading 🙂

      Like

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