Do You Follow the Hype?


This is always a hard question for me because I’ve had mixed results whenever I do decide to follow the hype. Is hype good or bad for a book? Do you trust it, or do you avoid hyped books like the plague?

Here are some of my experiences, as well as my opinions on hype, and feel free to add your own opinions/experiences in the comments section below!

So, whenever I think of “hyped books”, my mind automatically falls onto those well known YA books that people consider to be the epitome of YA: Twilight, Hunger Games, Caraval (Caraval, #1)Throne of Glass, etc. Recently, books more like Six of Crows, Caraval, and A Court of Thorns and Roses come to mind. Really, though, it depends on what end of the YA community you’re on. Being on the diversity side of it, I’m used to hearing loads and loads of hype around certain books, like 27 Hours, Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, and even The Hate U Give.

I’ve read a few books that I mentioned there, but I’ve only enjoyed 1 of those 9. I’ve read Hunger Games, Throne of Glass, 27 Hours, and Gentleman’s Guide. I DNF’d HG in the second chapter, and while I read ToG all the way through, it was a bland fantasy that had no ingenuity. 27H was harmful in a few ways, and the only one I’ve really enjoyed was Gentleman’s Guide. What I’m trying to get at here is that, even though these books are greatly hyped, I didn’t enjoy them. I’ve decided not to read books due to the sole fact that they were hyped up by the rest of book twitter.

So, is it worth it to follow the hype?

In my time in the YA community, it seems like a lot of people don’t follow the hype. Or, at least they don’t want to. People constantly complain about it and how most of the hyped books aren’t actually that good. Despite that, thoughbooks still get hyped. It doesn’t really seem like the dislike of hyped books stop people from hyping them. Multiple people like a book, they all get excited, and then they get many other people excited about it. It’s only when people start getting disappointed that people start hating the hype.

But there’s a reason certain books are hyped, right? They wouldn’t be hyped otherwise. They’re hyped because lots of people enjoyed them, not because lots of people hated them.

Furyborn (The Empirium Trilogy, #1)While this post is just me discussing multiple instances of hyped books, and whether or not its good or bad, one way people hype books is extremely interesting to me. Publishers choose a book that they think might “fit” into the community’s preferences, and then the publishers hype that book beyond belief. It happened with Caraval and Zenith, and is happening right now with Furyborn and The Children of Blood and Bone. I don’t know if these books are any good, but the publishers are definitely making them seem good, aren’t they!

The problem with publishers (and choice bloggers who get ARCs) hyping up books is that, more often than not, people are disappointed. Books are hyped for months in advance, pushing people’s expectations through the roof. When the book is anything but amazing, the book is dropped like it’s on fire, and forget about it.

So, what do y’all think?

Is it worth it to hype a book? Is hype good or bad?

13 thoughts on “Do You Follow the Hype?

  1. Hmmm. It’s not even a matter of quality for me. It’s that if I see several people get to read a book a year in advance for free, I’m less excited for the book. Especially when it’s a diverse book and not a single diverse reader was considered for an ARC copy. Also, if anything is compared to The Hunger Games, Game of Thrones, or Throne of Glass they are either too much of a copy cat or the story is very unoriginal and nothing like the comparisons. Publishers really need to stop comparing to those three…

    I will say that I think Children of Blood and Bone is supposed to actually be good, at least with how well-written it is. I want it to be good but I’m worried it won’t be. Furyborn is kind out of nowhere and I have no idea why it’s so hyped.

    To answer your question, I now avoid hyped books. I didn’t last year. Now I go and read all the 3 star reviews, do a bunch of research, and make sure it’s a story I’m personally interested in rather than read it but because 5 Booktubers all recommended it.
    Hyped books are usually given to people who always say generally positive things about every book they read or are too scared to lose their compensation/promotion if they give a bad review. I don’t mind hyped books. I just can’t trust it if no one is willing to say anything about the “downsides” in their review.

    Sorry, that was long!

    • No worries about it being long, that’s what these posts are for!

      I completely agree with you, though. If I see a book being compared to ToG, GoT, or HG, I’m going to be skeptical, and probably won’t read it. The only book that I’ve enjoyed that was compared to them was Mask of Shadows, which actually did the assassin competition well, and people actually died, unlike ToG. A book that was compared to GoT (Fallen Kingdoms) ended up being a carbon copy, and I couldn’t get halfway through it.

      I have seen multiple people that I personally trust say amazing things about Children of Blood and Bone, so I am excited for that one, but Furyborn really came out of nowhere. I hadn’t heard of it once before, and then the next thing I knew, people were raving about it. The publisher, Sourcebooks, is one that I have had good experiences with, and I have heard mentions of Furyborn having bisexual representation, so I’m really on the edge with it. I might read it, but I do have to admit that the summary sounds a little . . . cliche.

      I try to avoid hyped books, unless someone I trust loves it. Only once has that caused me to be disappointed in a hyped book (27H), but it’s a good measure for my personal reading preferences.

      Thank you so much for the response!

  2. I sometimes wonder if hype is less of ‘this is such a great book and so popular with bloggers’ and more of a ‘let’s do a really great marketing campaign for this book’. I know in my experience of getting books from publishers, they’re careful who they send what to and they’ll send you what they think you’ll review positively. And with our Goodreads, blogs, and general ratings available online to the world, it’s easy to make the connection. You’ve just got to put the book in the right hands, and then it’ll explode from there. Hype is just us doing exactly what the publishers and publicists wanted to happen in the first place. And, as you say, it can get out of hand and lead to a lot of disappointment. But they sold a lot of books, and that was the goal, right?

    I pick and choose when it comes to hyped books, and just go along with what I think I’ll like, rather than what’s being talked about. The downside is that when there’s a book I know I won’t enjoy (Zenith, as an example, because I’m not a fan of space opera), I can’t get away from it. For ones that I think I’ll love, I go for it. For the ones that hit in the middle, I have a group of reviewers that I trust for various genres, and depending on what they say, I may or may not check it out.

    • Your approach seems to match up with mine, generally as well. If its in a genre I like, I might but it in my TBR or want to read, but it all depends on how much the hype gets to me if I’ll actually read it. I’m a huge fan of science fiction and fantasy, but I still can’t bring myself to read books like Zenith and Caraval, and even though many trusted friends have read and reviewed Children of Blood and Bone positively, I still hesitate just because it’s done SO WELL.

      But overall, I do agree with your approach! 🙂

  3. I’m careful about hype, I suppose. I don’t just follow it because it’s there, but if people I trust are hyping it or it’s something I’m genuinely interested in the premise of, I’m more likely to pick it up. Before reading something, it’s difficult to tell whether or not you’re actually going to enjoy it yourself; a lot of what goes into picking books to read is guesswork. Everyone runs into books that sound amazing that they don’t end up liking. I think it just comes down to analyzing my interests — do I want to read it because *I* want to read it, or do I want to read it because someone else wants me to read it?

    • Same here. Often with popular ones, things are more likely to be harmful or not what you’re expecting. And that’s a good gauge: do I want to read it, or does someone else want me to read it? I’ll have to use that 🙂 thanks!

  4. I follow the hype when people I trust praise a book. When one of my friends loves a book, I usually don’t even bother reading the synopsis, but add it to my TBR right away.

    I think most of the books that get a lot of hype in the YA community are YA fantasies and I tend to be more critical of those. I need something creative and unique, rather than recycling the same popular tropes over and over again. So yeah, I am definitely more critical of those.

    On the other hand though, I only started reading often a few years ago, so there are tons of hyped books I wasn’t able to read, but I am curious to because they have received tons of praise.

    This was a very interesting discussion! I really enjoyed reading your post 🙂

    • You’re the second person I’ve seen mention hyped YA fantasies. I do have to admit that I agree with you, because so many YA fantasies follow the same, overused plots and I’m getting tired of them. Only a few have done those stereotypical plots well, and they are few and far between.

      I started reading a lot a while back, and I have to admit that I’m glad I never got into the hyped books back then. I would just randomly choose books off the shelf that looked good.

      Thank you so much! I enjoyed seeing your response <3

  5. I can’t remember the last time I read a “mainstream” hyped book. The only hyped books i read i can think of are the diverse ones hyped in my twitter circle, which aren’t that hyped on a bigger scale.

  6. I’m aware of the hype, but it doesn’t really factor into my decision to read a book. If the synopsis sounds interesting, I’ll read it. If a YA contemporary gets a lot of hype, I’ll probably be curious enough to read it. (As long as the book isn’t romance-focused.) The YA fantasy hype usually doesn’t work on me. This is probably an unpopular opinion, but most fantasy books seem like the exact same book to me. I feel like I’m reading the same thing over and over.

    • A lot of the mainstream fantasy is like that. That’s why I always end up digging around for a while looking for good ones, but I do come up with a few that are good!

      I sometimes consider hype, but only with certain genres and authors. Thank you!

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