Reading as a Blogger vs. Reading as a Reader | Discussion


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Let’s be real; reading for reviewing is not the same as reading for pleasure. I recently compared what I currently read and what I read before I started blogging, and I noticed that I rated books higher when I read for pleasure than when I read to review, and I enjoyed more books even though in hindsight, which weren’t as enjoyable the first time around.

This begs the question, will I ever be able to read for pleasure? A while ago, I wrote a post about how I have become more critical and more meticulous about what I read, which can be a good thing… or it can be a bad thing.

Being critical and honest about our feelings is imperative, definitely, for reviewing books. It makes us honest and expresses how we feel about a certain book. I think reviewing is a great way to develop certain skills to learn to be more analytical and evaluative, which can be very helpful in school or in work.

However, reading for pleasure is just as it seems. It’s for pleasure. Though, I’ve realized that I have become more critical and analytical when approaching all sorts of writing forms, including pleasure-reading. So how do we keep the sanctity of reading for pleasure? Is there a way to fully enjoy the book without pinpointing certain points I didn’t like about it?

Or maybe we have to get to the root cause. Can we truly enjoy a book without being critical of certain points that may not be developed as well or as fully as we wanted it to be? Can we fully separate reading for pleasure as opposed to reading to reviewing like an on/off button?

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I know this was a very inconclusive discussion, but I really just wanted to bring this up. What do you think? If you’re a blogger or reviewer, do you think that you’ve become more critical? Can you still enjoy pleasure-reading without pinpointing certain parts that you didn’t like?




40 thoughts on “Reading as a Blogger vs. Reading as a Reader | Discussion

  1. This is a very interesting topic! Now that I have became a blogger/book reviewer I have become more critical which can only be a good thing when your reviewing a book. I don’t think I can go back to reading for pleasure, even if I was reading for pleasure! Reviewing buzz words will just be spinning in my head. But I don’t necessarily think that is bad as well 🙂


  2. You are right, I, too, rate books lower now that I review !
    But I still draw as much pleasure from my books as I did before, it’s just that before I used to not like a book and not go in depth but now when I don’t like it I’m able to pinpoint what about it I didn’t like.


  3. Yes! Thank you for bringing up this topic!! I’ve noticed this when I read for reviewing purposes, too. I catch myself being more critical than I ever would be normally. However, recently I’ve had a change in mindset that has helped: I don’t decide to review the book until after I’m done reading it. I do recommendation posts, so if there is a book I have nothing critical to say about, I’ll use it for that instead of reviewing it. (Of course this doesn’t work on books from Blogging for Books or publishers for review). I don’t have to review every book I read, and I need to remind myself of that.


  4. jumping in as a non-blogger, this is a big part of why I don’t blog. I read to read. I rarely think about what I liked or didn’t like about a book. Some books stay with me, others don’t. I’m afraid it would take me forever to write a review. (I have no desire to blog, never have, I’m good with reading all the amazing blogs out there. honestly, I’m in awe of all you amazing bloggers! All the work that you guys put into your blogs, seriously, hats off to every one of you!!)

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  5. I will read a book and love it, but when I start writing the review, I often find myself giving it a lower rating than I originally did because I notice all the things that were a bit off. It’s like I still read the same way and emerge myself in the story but when I write a review I am less attached and therefor more critical of what I read.


  6. This is definitely an interesting topic one that I’ve definitely thought about in the past. I do think I’m harsher in my rating now than I was before blogging but I think when I’m reading the book I still do it for pleasure. It’s when I finish the book I become more critical and start dissecting the book which is something I didn’t typically do before I started blogging. 😀


  7. Writing to me is a form of art and a lot of art to me is all about the experience. And plus when people pick up a book they’re mostly not going to look for super critical things we do as reviewers. So while I do review things critically, most of the time I read them for the experience because that’s a huge portion of my reading and later reviewing. I think maybe going about that way might get you a happy medium.


  8. I like to separate my reading with my reviews, sound weird but I will always read for pleasure and I will try and not think about a review I may or may not write. The only real reason I will review a book is if I have strong feeling about it, I.e. If I adored or if it bugged me beyond belief. I also try not and fall into the trap of reading hyped books as most often they fall short. I do try ew genres but I won’t just read a book because of the hype so I don’t find my reading is very influenced much. Great topic!


  9. I don’t think I’ve reach the point where I read as a blogger yet. I haven’t found that balance. I think eventually I will get there. I just read for pleasure and I am guessing as I continue on this journey as a book blogger I will find the process I need to use to read as a blogger.


  10. I don’t even know how to just read for pleasure anymore. Even when I read a book that’s not a review copy, that I am under no obligation to review, I’m still starting to rate it and write the review in my head as I read it, taking mental notes about what I like and dislike, etc. I think, before I blogged, I pretty much liked most books I read because I just didn’t pay attention to how well everything was done. But reviewing made me start to notice all these little things, and once you start noticing them, I don’t think you can stop!


  11. ♥ this post and I completely agree — I often long for and miss the days of not reading for reviewing — not being a blogger and being able to read (or re-read) what I wanted, not having deadlines, etc. Definitely more pure! But it is so fun to discuss books with people and find out about new books and get books before they come out! Such a toss up. Great discussion!!


  12. I definitely have become more critical in some ways, especially because I read more consciously as a feminist than I did before I started my blog. I try to keep a pad of sticky notes by me when I read, so when I find something I don’t like or want to critique, I slap a sticky note on the page, maybe jot a note of which section I want to come back to, and then move on. I’ve found that doing it that way keeps me from obsessing over my critiques while I read, and makes the process more similar to reading for pleasure.


  13. I am more critical when I read books now, but…I can still magically disassociate with the reviewer in me and read for pleasure. Usually when I first start reading a book, I approach it with a critical eye, but if it’s a clever enough book, it can make me throw down my pen and pad of paper and give my full attention to the story. That’s when I know I have an excellent book in my hands!


  14. I think like this when it comes to movies weirdly enough. I like to switch off and not worry about criticisms somtimes and just enjoy something for what it is. When it comes to books… you know, I don’t know for sure yet. I change my thinking all the time. When I started blogging I did find reading for blogging and for pleasure different, but I review everything I read any way. So I’m not sure! But an excellent question!


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