I always proclaimed myself a hype-free reader. Looking back at my favorite books of 2016 here and my favorite books of 2015 here and here I see mostly backlist titles. I know for sure if I couldn’t look anywhere without seeing a certain book I most likely wouldn’t be picking it anytime soon. I hate being told what to read. I love when friends give me recommendations or rave about their latest favorite, but the decision what to read next is mine. And I feel like hype takes that decision from me. It’s so easy to find yourself being swept by this great hype wave. In my experience it usually goes wrong. I start a book with such high expectations that it’s doomed from the first page. Or I pick up a book that is not for me because everyone talks about it and I want to know what all this hype is about. And it’s a sure way to a book slump.
My way to deal with it is listen to myself. What do I want to read, what book am I in the mood right now?
If I find myself being caught up in hype about a book I try to step down, put it aside for a while. When hype dies I return to the book. If I still want to read it I pick it up.
This solution is obviously is not for everyone. I guess it’s harder for those readers who have reading schedule and review obligations. Since I don’t read ARCs (my reasons here), it works for me.
The only downside of this for me is “reading solitude”. When I read a book months or years from its release I usually do it alone. When you read a book at the high point of hype you do it with other fans. You can rave or rant together. I miss this connection with other readers.
As I’ve told I consider myself hype-resistant person, but while on hiatus earlier this year I realized how many of my reading choices were because of hype. I often get sidetracked by a shiny hyped book on my way to an old good story.