Stop & Chat

Stop & Chat is a weekly discussion here at Read. Sleep. Repeat. where I pretty much talk about whatever tickles my fancy.

Today’s topic was suggested by Jon of Scott Reads It! THANK YOU SNAPPER!!

It’s not you, it’s me! When a book just doesn’t work for you.

We’ve all come across that one (or more) books that was action packed, well paced, well written and all around good. But, for whatever reason, just didn’t work for YOU. This has happened to me with The Archived by Victoria Schwab and Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi. Two books that were well written and honestly pretty good but that just didn’t work for me.

But in those instances what do you do? Do you review the book and say what you didn’t like? Do you say it was a “not you it’s me” situation? Do you skip reviewing it in general?

Personally, I still review it. It may be a tad hard but I feel like I owe you all my bookish experiences and that includes the experiences of “it’s not you it’s me”. But I make sure that I say it just wasn’t for me, and if I still recommend the book I say that too! Everyone has different taste and I try to be unbiased when it comes to recommending books that didn’t work for me.

So what are your tactics when tackling a “It’s not you it’s me” situation?

Signature 1

25 thoughts on “Stop & Chat! ~ It’s not you, it’s me! ~”

  1. As you said, I do review it, explain why I think it didn’t work for me.
    Reviews should be honest, so if I didn’t like a book but I think it’s more to do with me than the book, I should say so. Not everyone likes the same kind of books, and what isn’t my cup of tea (be it in general or at that particular moment cause of how my emotions are at the time) could be someone else’s perfect book!
    Pili recently posted…Friday Reads: Mini Review: Howling For You by Chloe Neill!My Profile

  2. I always give specific reasons why I don’t like a book. I have seen too many reviews that say because it was, “slow reading”, or the characters “didn’t make sense.” Tell me why please, or don’t bother rating and reviewing it because right after those types of blog entries I see too many sheep saying, “Oh, thanks, I won’t bother with it then. Why???? They have told you nothing!!!! Another thing I noticed is these types of reviews seem to be packed full of publishing jargon like “plot layering” and “character arcs”, like dorks with expensive sports cars. If a reviewer gives specifics then even if it is a negative review the reader can say, “Oh, but I like those things even if you don’t.” I very recently reviewed a book that was too much like a stereotypical “dimestore” YA romance in the beginning, before blooming into a kick butt YA fantasy in the second half. I explained that I felt the repeated descriptions of clothing, cars, cell phones and make up detracted from the story, but I understood many readers love those inclusions. I won’t bother to review a book in depth if it is already popular, like when I reviewed City of Bones. I simply wrote it was too much like reading a “super heros” story and that wasn’t my bag, letting people know they might like it. What really irks me is when reviewers give or take away stars because of cover art.
    La La in the LiBrArY recently posted…Caring for your BoOkS: NYC Public Library…My Profile

  3. I only review around 40% of the books I read so this issue should I review it or not comes only rarely. So if the book is a review copy/ARC I review it regardless of whether I loved it or hated it.

    The tactful way to review a book that you disliked would be to give all the reasons as to why you didn’t enjoy it and state that this book just wasn’t your cup of time. Sometimes I also link up to both positive and negative reviews so that the reader can get a second opinion.
    Nuzaifa @ Say It with Books recently posted…Interview + Giveaway with Matthew TurnerMy Profile

  4. I have one or two conditions like this. In the end, the book end up DNF or if I’ve finished it, I skip the review (but still put some words explaining why in Goodreads review column).

  5. There are definitely books that I felt like I would have enjoyed if I’d potentially read it at a different time, and there have also been plenty of books that I’ve thought “it’s me not you.”

    I generally still review those books because I don’t read that many books (comparatively) in a year, and I still need to have reviews. I do, however, always note that it was a “it’s me not you” situation, and I also note if it’s a book I think I could have enjoyed more if I’d read it at a different point in time.
    Jessica @ Fly to Fiction recently posted…Review: The Civil Wars by The Civil WarsMy Profile

  6. I do review them, along with an “It’s not you, it’s me” type of disclaimer. I typically mention that a particular book has overall stellar reviews on GR, and I try to be clear on the reasons it didn’t work for me. This was recently the case with Red Rising by Pierce Brown. I also have come across this with popular books I deem offensive, like Hopeless and Ten Tiny Breaths, where I’m convinced that everyone else is wrong and I am right. 🙂
    Stephanie @ Inspiring Insomnia recently posted…Stacking the Shelves # 47My Profile

  7. I review books I didn’t agree with, but I talk about just exactly why I had issues with it. They’re things my readers might want to know, especially if their tastes are similar to mine of they avoid certain types of books. So far I’ve never DNFed (somehow) so I do look at the book overall and try to point out a few of the good moments as well.
    Bec @ Ransom Reads recently posted…NY Challenge: FollowersMy Profile

  8. I try to review everything I read, with a few exceptions obviously due to time and stuff. But if something didn’t work for me, and I can pinpoint what that is, I think it is good to put that in the review. If someone has the same issue, they’ll probably have the same reaction. But, if that doesn’t bother someone, then they know they’ll likely enjoy the book.

  9. I’ve never really felt insecure blogging as much as I did when I didn’t These Broken Stars. I didn’t connect and I found it predictable and I hated the pacing. I had reason after reason why it didn’t work for me, but some of those reasons were why most people on the planet who read it said they loved it. There was one other blogger that didn’t really like it. Usually when this happens I just explain in my review why it didn’t work for ME. That’s the thing about blogging though, it’s all really subjective.
    Aly @ My Heart Hearts Books recently posted…This Song Will Save Your Life (Review)My Profile

  10. This just happened to me with The Indigo Spell! I’ll be reviewing it, but I made sure to point out that it was my expectations for this series that made it unenjoyable. Hopefully the things I touched on that bothered me, other people will read and think, “I love that kind of thing!”

    Reading is such a personal experience, I think it would be impossible to remove my biases! Haha

  11. Those are the kind of books I especially want to write a review about. I give ratings depending on how much I liked a book and when book doesn’t work for me it’s not getting a good rating. I want to explain then why I it didn’t work for me so that people stil know that they might enjoy it.
    Crini recently posted…Pretty Books: The RithmatistMy Profile

  12. I know this feeling. It’s awkward and odd and kind of uncomfortable. I have read perfectly fine books. Good writing, a great plot, likeable characters – but there has just been a THING preventing me from falling in love with it.
    In answer to your question – yes. I still post the review. I mean, if we’re afraid to post a mediocre review of a beloved book on our blog, isn’t that removing the sole purpose of our review? To share our thoughts and be honest? I think so.
    I have been attacked on a 2.5 star review that really wasn’t even scathing. I just mentioned the aspects of the book that I, PERSONALLY, didn’t like. I didn’t tell everyone to go and burn it, or never buy it. I even said that it might suit some people. But this person has attacked me twice. The first time, I was really hurt. I couldn’t believe that someone would stoop so low. But when they did it again on the same review, I was just like: uhm, no. Please stop now.
    Anyway, kind of went off topic, but the bottom line is: Yes! Post your mediocre review of the beloved book. Say why you didn’t love it like everyone else. Share your personal opinion. Tis what book blogging is all about 😀
    Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity recently posted…Australian Women Writer Challenge 2014My Profile

  13. I had that happen a couple of times because of what I call “dimestore” YA books. You know the kind, where the names change and the supernatural power may be different, but there is always the new mysterious and hot guy in the high school and your best friend has a crush on him, but he is all into you, ha ha!! They are the type of books you can put down and pick back up days later and not be lost, or for the reason I used to read them, be constantly interrupted and not really care. My son was seriously ill for an extended period of time until about a year ago. I chose these books to read in Dr’s waitingrooms and while he was getting his IV infusions, which took 4 hours. I always gave these books 2 stars. They serve their purpose, but are just so tacky. I was “attacked” about these books a couple of times. My premise is how can you star these books with the same ratings as Harry Potter, Hunger Games, or Divergent????? Those girls were so silly. Thank goodness I don’t need those “easy reader” books anymore!!

  14. Oh my gosh, wait you mean there’s another person besides me who didn’t love Under the Never Sky? Haha. It sounds like you kinda liked it, but I honestly hated it…I DNFed it and I’m pretty sure I only gave it one star. It just really didn’t work for me. I really don’t like being “that person,” but sometimes it’s necessary. I always review every book I read, even if I DNF it. I feel like it’s important to review it even in those cases (maybe even especially!), so that other readers know that some people didn’t like it and what negative things they might expect from a book. If I see a bunch of glowing reviews for a book, I might want to read it, but then maybe I’ll see a bad review (or a few) for the same book and they’ll say something that makes me realize the book probably isn’t going to be for me. We should be able to have all of the information available to us…not just the good stuff. At least that’s what I think!
    Miranda @ Tempest Books recently posted…Reading Before Bed {Discussion}My Profile

  15. That’s exactly what I do! I actually just did this the other day with Song of the Fireflies and with Side Effects May Vary. I think a lot of people will adore those books, but I could feel that it just wasn’t for me. There are some books that I feel are actually horrible.. the kind that I wouldn’t recommend to anyone. But then there are some that aren’t horrible, they just weren’t to my tastes or there’s something that really annoyed ME personally, but may not annoy others.

    So, yeah, I review those books and just clearly say that it didn’t work for me, but it may work for someone else!
    Ashley recently posted…My Old Website Designs (feel free to laugh—I did!)My Profile

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge