Discussion | What Book Reviews Catch Your Eye?

As some of you might have seen in my first ever Mailbox Monday earlier in the month, I am currently in the process of planning a big redesign of my blog including my blog header, avatar, layout, post graphics, and signoff, amongst a bunch of other things. One of the other things that I would love feedback on is my book reviews and felt it would also be a great opportunity for us to chat about what attracts you to a book review?

As many other book bloggers know although book reviews are the most important element of being a book blogger, book reviews are often our least visited, liked and commented on posts! I personally feel like this is such a shame as I have found discovered some amazing books that I would never have come across otherwise, some which really changed my mind about whether to read a book or not, and of course, reviews about books that I love and give me the opportunity to gush about my love.

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This is where you all come in. Tell me what it is about reviews that really pulls you in and makes you want to read them? Do you only read reviews of books you have already read? Are you a person who loves reading reviews of books you’ve never heard of so you can discover new books? Will you only read reviews if they are aesthetically pleasing or is the content more important to you? Would you like to see a greater diversity in book review layouts to include full reviews, short reviews, and bullet-point reviews?

I have already made a few tweaks to turn my reviews from this into this, in order to try and make my reviews more pleasing. So far I have made the key info at the top smaller so it doesn’t take up so much space, purchase links, put my rating right near the top, included little panda headers to break up the review, used subheadings to make it easier to find information, and provide recommendations at the bottom of the review.

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Let's Chat! (1)

Please do share your thoughts with me in the comments below or tweet me @RedRocketPanda.

Not only do I find it really interesting to see what motivates people to interact with different posts but I also want to make sure that I can incorporate your feedback into my redesign! 

EST. 2015 (1)


21 thoughts on “Discussion | What Book Reviews Catch Your Eye?

  1. I read reviews of books I’ve read, want to read or are otherwise interesting looking, or are reviewed by a person with a similar taste to mine.
    So basically I’d skip reviews of romance, erotica or non fiction most likely.

    I do like lots of info about said books. Also link to goodreads.
    And pretty pics, but at least the cover pic…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It is very curious that reviews are the least visited posts. Personally, they are my favorite (along with recommendations and book hauls) and I do enjoy them inmensly.
    I read reviews of book’s I’ve never heard of before or I’m undecided about reading. Now, if I am planning on reading a book in the very near future, I avoid reviews about it until I’ve read it. Once I have my own opinion on the book and my review written I go ahead and read reviews from said novel to see what people think about it and how it compares to my experience with it.

    I enjoy all types of reviews. Short ones with bullet points, long, elaborated ones that go into detail about their favorite things. The only think I dislike is when the review tells me every single thing that happens in the novel, because if it’s one I’d like to read, I’d like to experience it myself. This is obviously personal preference.

    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! And thanks so much for your comment. Like you, if I know I’m going to read a book I avoid reading reviews so I don’t spoil myself – I personally don’t even read the blurb or the goodreads summary half the time lol.

      It is sad that reviews are the least visited posts as I know reviewers put so much effort into them! I’d love for more people to read reviews of books they’ve never heard of before so we can give love to underrated books too!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love reading book review! I read review of books I’ve read and want to read, sometimes I read review of books I’ve never read too (as long as it’s fantasy or sci-fi). I don’t like reading long review tho, I prefer it to be short and simple. I love when the review separate the post into several parts like plot, worldbuilding, characters, it makes me easier to read only the important part. But I always love your review don’t let stats tell you otherwise 💖

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I typically read reviews of books I’ve read, am anticipating, that are overly hyped, or that are being raved about by bloggers I know share a similar taste in books to myself.

    I tend to skim A LOT if the review is too wordy and poorly spaced out. It just feels like a tonne of effort to get through. Dot points are fantastic, reviews that are broken up into logical parts (characters, plot, writing style, etc) are also just easier to read through.

    I actually really love the way your reviews are laid out at the moment!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for the feedback! I’ve been trying to learn from other bloggers reviews that I like to read myself and trying to break up my reviews as I know they can be wordy and splatted onto the page! So it’s really nice to know that the new layout is helping!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I like reviews of books I have read, as well as new books to be discovered. I also prefer shorter reviews, and ones that focus on how to book made you feel. There are summaries on goodreads and tons of profession book reviews out there, but there are also a lot of objectively good books that I would not enjoy reading. Learning someones reader experience is more interesting to me personally. Particularly for fiction.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ooh that’s interesting. I always worry that my reviews aren’t professional enough but you have a good point about there already being lots of professional reviews out there if people want to read those!

      I’m going to be introducing some new review formats over the next month including shorter reviews, multi-book reviews, and bullet-point reviews to try and give people who like shorter reviews something!


  6. Ooh, interesting questions. I do like pictures of the book too, though I don’t do this with my reviews because I’m a lazy bean. I tend to read reviews of books I’ve read or at least heard of, though if I like the blogger I’ll tend to read all their reviews, whether I’ve heard of the books or not.

    I really like the idea of putting recommended books at the bottom of the page – I might have to pick this up too! And your pandas are super adorable 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Wendy 😀 It’s so tricky with book reviews as I know some people tend to read reviews of books they’ve read/heard of, but then also don’t want to read reviews of popular releases that they’ve already seen 10 other reviews on xD Trying to find the balance is proving to be interesting as well as trying to promote underrated books.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I definitely prefer shorter reviews, and maybe something like 2-4 books per post. That way there’s a chance I’ll have actually read one of them. I find often with super hyped books they’re already being reviewed everywhere else, so I start to skim when I see then 15th review for the same book that’s super long.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have been planning to introduce some different formats of book reviews over the next month including short-reviews of 2-3 books per post, as well as bullet points lists for shorter, more succinct reviews 🙂


  8. I mostly read reviews for young adult books, because it’s the kind of books I read the most 🙂
    I mostly read book reviews for books I want to read, books I have read or books I have heard of a little bit… sometimes, a book cover can really make me curius, too.
    After, really, it depends on my… mood, actually, some days I’m in the mood to read reviews, while some others I’m just not, haha. I really like when the reviews are easy to read: not necessarily meaning that they aren’t long, but that they have paragraphs, spaces in between or separators, images or aesthetics, something to make the review easier to read and just, to help me breathe overall. I also appreciate whenever the reviewer takes some time to bold some things out, or put little titles to their paragraphs, or leave out some quotes to give a feeling of the book overall. I’m also a huge fan of smaller reviews, the ones you can quickly read, whether they’re bullet-pointed or likes/dislikes. They’re also very fun to write, if you’re looking to spice things up, I’m sure you’ll have fun with these kind of reviews 🙂
    I also appreciate it a lot whenever there is a link to Goodreads, so I can add the book directly to my TBR if needed 😛
    Looking forward to seeing your new design!


  9. Great question. I’m most often drawn to reviews of books I’ve already read or books I’ve put on my TBR. If a book doesn’t fall into that category, then it’s usually the cover or a descriptive review title will prompt me to check the review (just taking a look reviews sitting in Feedly, even something as simple as “Middle grade supernatural mystery review” will pique my interest because that’s a genre I enjoy). I feel like I don’t comment often on reviews of books I haven’t read but I do like reading them to decide if I want to check out a book. The design of the review doesn’t impact me a lot – it’s more about the content for me, but I do like how you’re using subheadings.


  10. To be honest I am more attracted to other blog posts compared to reviews! However I am more likely to read reviews of books that I’ve read or want to read. I also read reviews written by book bloggers who have similar tastes as me. I prefer mini-reviews written in bullet points rather than full-length reviews.
    Great discussion topic 🙂 🙂


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