Read. Blog. Discuss. — Reading as a Reader Vs. Reading as a Blogger (Reviewer)


Today I’m linking up with Samantha @ Bookish Serendipity for Read. Blog. Discuss. See more about the monthly link up and how to participate here. This month’s topic is  Reading as a Reader Vs. Reading as a Blogger (Reviewer). Yay, exciting!

Reading as a Reader –

I read to enjoy. I read because I adore words, and characters, and stories, and I devour books like I devour chocolate. Hint: that’s a lot. And, being honest, I am not entirely sure that there is a huge difference between me reading as a reader – and me reading as a reviewer. And it all comes back to the fact that I love books (have you realized that yet?), and regardless of how much I like – or dislike – that book, I’m still able to appreciate the amount of effort that has gone into it to get it into my bookstores. Admittedly, I’ve got a bit of an in-built critiquer, though. So it’s quite hard for me to read a book and to not pick apart its every little flaw. Is this horrible of me, to always be searching for the flaws in something? Maybe, but neither does that stop me from enjoying a book, or, even if I’m not fond of it, finding something to enjoy about it. You could also say that I read books to escape reality a bit, so that is where I differ from reading novels as blogger / reviewer.

Reading as a Blogger (Reviewer) –

I try to review books logically, fairly, and as honestly as I possibly can. So how does this affect my reading? Simply put . . . it doesn’t. Not really, anyway. I’m still able to enjoy a book while reviewing it, so it doesn’t change much. In saying this, though, there are slightly different things I would do when reading a book to review it.

  1. I make a mental list of things to talk about in my review. I don’t even have to write it down! It can be purely mental, and that’s okay. (As long as I don’t forget it.)
  1. I don’t let the fact that I’m going to review the book lessen my enjoyment of it. Reviewing and reading is a passion of mine – so I wouldn’t want that to ever, ever change.
  1. I might write some things down. Like, for example, a page number of something that happened which I want to talk about in my review. (This is also necessary if I wish to quote from the novel, too.)

All in all – there isn’t much of a difference between reading as a reviewer or a reader for me.

Reading as a Writer (This was inspired by Ana @ Butterflies of the Imagination’s bonus question. I hope you don’t mind, Ana!) –

This is where I pay slightly more attention to what I’m reading than usual. One of the best ways to improve your writing – apart from writing a lot, obviously – is to read a lot, and to actually pay attention to what you’re reading. Like, for example, when you’re reading a book you absolutely love to death. I try to ask myself what it is about this book that makes it so good? I might even write down notes and stick them into my notebook if something is done particularly well, so I don’t forget it. I don’t obsessively sticky-note things, but when something stands out more so than usual I make note of it. And, the same goes with a novel I’m not really enjoying. I ask myself what it is that I’m not enjoying – and learn to avoid and / or build on it so that it does work.

How about you? How do you differ when you read books a reviewer, reader – or even a writer? Is there a noticeable difference?


11 thoughts on “Read. Blog. Discuss. — Reading as a Reader Vs. Reading as a Blogger (Reviewer)

  1. I think I read books completely differently now as a reviewer; as a reader I rarely noticed flaws in character build up for example…now I can’t help myself in seeing flaws and comments. I still enjoy books as much as a reviewer I just think I’m a little pickier!

  2. For me, reading as a reader and a writer are exactly the same, because they’re such massive parts of who I am – and reviewing is getting there as well. I guess I would just think “ooh, I could talk about that in a review” more than usual!

  3. I tend to be more observant about certain things in books while I’m reading now that I am a blogger- like you mentioned, I’ll make mental notes or jot some things down so I remember to write about them in my review of the book. Mostly, I feel like it makes me even more passionate about the books I read. When I’m reading a really great book, I get really excited about writing the review even before I finish the book. Also, I find that I have more organized thoughts and opinions on books now that I write reviews about them.

    Great post! :)

  4. Just like you, reading as a reader and reading as a reviewer have kind of merged into one for me. I automatically critique every book I read and try to find what works just because by now it’s pretty much built into my brain.

    Ooh, I am so honored that you actually included my question in your post. :D I don’t mind at all. I think as I’ve gotten more and more into writing, I’ve definitely gotten better at paying attention to what works and doesn’t work in what I read. I should probably get into the habit of writing down notes about it, though….

  5. So very true. Reading as a reviewer automatically makes you critique every single detail that sometimes I forget to enjoy the book. It reminds me when I read Black Ice, I certainly enjoyed it as a reader but as a reviewer, there was just so many things wrong with it.

    Thanks Kara!

  6. I’m pretty much the same Kara, there’s no difference in my reading only with reviewing, I add little tab notes or highlights if it’s something I need to make note of. This year I plan on doing more non review reading, like now with the Percy Jackson series. I’m stripping back to reviewing or posting only every third day, so I’ve got more time to visit other blogs. We’re like two peas in a pod poppet <3

  7. I think I am so used to reading and reviewing every book or most books, that I always highlight quotes that I want, make a mental note of what I want to discuss or bookmark it for later. Even for books that I don’t need to review, because you never know lol.

  8. I’m with you, it makes no difference whether or not I review the book. If I hit it off, I hit if off. If not then I’m bored and I abandon. I’ve always marked quotes and things that I like. Now with reviewing, I just push it all into one big thing. But yeah, it doesn’t really bother me. I’m with Kelly, as in I’m not reviewing as much this year. I used to review nearly everything that I read and man oh man, the fact that I review before I go on really slows me down. So this year it’s a little more about me! :D Fantastic post, love! x

  9. The only time reading as a reader and reading as a blogger is different for me is that when I’m reading as a blogger I’m more likely to finish a book I don’t like.
    And I’ll occasionally make sarcastic comments in the notes section of the Bluefire app when I’m reading a book from Netgalley.

    But otherwise, there is no difference. Sometimes I’ll start a book that I have no intention of reviewing, but I’ll finish it and think “I need to write a review for that book” (whether it be positive or negative).

  10. I actually don’t think I read a book differently. I read every book like a blogger but because of that, I’m also reading it like a writer. I guess I just like to pay close details to everything as a person. Even the books I don’t have to review, I make notes for anyway. I like reviewing and I like analysis of why characters do the things they do. I’m probably going to end up taking psych in upper high school grades because of it :)

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