Do you feel hype pressure?

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.

What is your relationship with hype?

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12 Comments on “Do you feel hype pressure?

  1. Honestly, if anything, hype makes me less likely to read a book lol. I rarely tend to like the popular books, and I rarely tend to even be interested in them in the first place, so if a book is hyped, I just associate it with the other hyped books I tried and didn’t like! But I still read them sometimes, but only if they actually sound like my kinda book. And it’s usually once they’re backlisted anyway lol.
    Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight recently posted…Graphic Novel Review: Saga Vol. 7 by Brian K. Vaughan & Fiona Staples

  2. Hi! Karen from For What It’s Worth mentioned your post on her blog – and since it resonated with me, I’m here! My name is Roberta, and English is an acquired language for me too – I’m from Italy. Nice to meet you!

    “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.”

    I’m like you – I rarely read hyped books. Since before I started blogging, I found myself gravitating towards small pub/indie books (not a deliberate choice, but most of the times, they called out to me for one reason or another). I set up my blog precisely with the intent of giving those forlorn books a spotlight. Now, like you, I’m not a book snob – I can get interested in a hyped book sometimes. But it has to have so much going for it, and I have to read so many early and even not-so-early reviews, that when I buy it the poor book is always yesterday’s hype LOL.

    It’s funny, but I posted a discussion about hyped books recently. My commenters seemed to agree about hype being, most of the times, the result of a big publisher pushing the right buttons. It’s sad, because small pub or indie books don’t stand a chance against that, even when they’re better than the hyped ones (which, trust me, happens sometimes).

    You’re right – when you do decide that you want to read a book but you’ve let the hype die, there’s the downside of reading it alone. Everybody else has moved on. But to me, it’s a small price to pay. It would be fun to discuss it in real time but – oh, well. One can’t have everything. There are still ways one can bond with one’s fellow readers, don’t you think? 😉

  3. I don’t mind getting swept away in hype because most of the time, I find that I enjoy books that everyone is raving about. I’m not going to say that I’m never disappointed, but I don’t know that I’m disappointed any more often than I am with unhyped books. I can definitely see why some people like to avoid it completely, though!
    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction recently posted…Little Fun Club Blog Tour & $50 Giveaway: A Lit Box for Kids 0-12!

  4. I do feel that way sometimes, even with books like you said, in genres that I don’t normally read. Kind of silly really when you think about it. I do try to wait though with those over hyped books if I do want to read them because more often than not, if I don’t I seem to be let down by them otherwise.
    kindlemom1 recently posted…Review: The Adjustment by Suzanne Young

  5. I definitely get pressured by the hype and I’m not sad about it!! I really love to be able to join in the discussion. Although it also triples my already overwhelming TBR and I don’t even know wheeere to start anymore. Eeeek. And there are a LOT of instances where hype is a complete let down, sadly, so that’s annoying. But I’ve found some favourite books because of hype so I’m absolutely terrible at not caving to it. CURIOSITY!!

  6. Since I don’t read a lot of YA, especially YA contemporary, usually I’m not that interested in books that get a lot of hype anyway. That works for me because hype makes me suspicious, even though I know it’s important for a book’s commercial success. But when a fantasy or sci-fi book that I was already interested in (whether it was because of the author, the blurb, or even the cover art) I do find myself buying into it because I was already excited about the book. Usually I try to block it out but sometimes it’s hard to ignore!
    Danya @ Fine Print recently posted…Review: Duels and Deception by Cindy Anstey

  7. I am just like you in this regard (my boyfriend call me the “Hipster Kitty”). I hate hype so much I STILL have not read half the Harry Potter books (although, truly, I succumbed to that several years ago and read 3 or 4, and then just didn’t want to devour them all and have nothing left, so I’m taking it slowly).

    But yes, we are talking over 10 years of resisting reading Harry Potter. Even when I was a kid. Even when the publishers’ marketing team sent kids out little letters about muggles to introduce the book. I was one of those kids.

    THAT’S how resistant to hype I am 😀

    But sometimes it’s fun to just go with it. However, I do that very rarely. I’ve done that maybe with 1 or 2 books (which I can’t even recall now). When I see hype, I get this instant urge to resist. Bet you know what I mean.
    Evelina recently posted…Book haul #3 and March reading stats

  8. I am frequently caught up with hype when it comes to books. It’s more I’m caught up with buying a book because of hype, it doesn’t necessarily mean I read it. It’s why I have so many books on my shelves, especially some of my unread books. I quite like reading a book way after everyone else as well because it means I have my own thoughts and people will often be able to say what they thought as well because everyone’s read it by that point.

  9. I do the same thing. I purposely won’t read a book that’s hyped (unless it’s something that was on my radar to begin with and *I* wanted to read it. Not all hyped books are bad).

    I wait months before I get back to it. Yeah, you end up out of the loop but I think it sets up a better reading experience though. No pressure and less of a chance of let down.

    In my case anyway.

    When I used to read because of book hype – I ended up in a year long reading slump.

    For What It’s Worth
    Karen recently posted…friday fast 5! Geekerella by ashley poston

  10. My relationship with hype is tremulous at best. But I like when it proves me right. I’m not the type to begrudge the popularity of a certain book, either. So I guess you can say I approach them warily.

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