A discussion with P.E. and Mari.
The last discussion post we did about Bloggers' Reviewing Etiquette resulted in many comments about spoilers in reviews. It seems to be that many people don't like them, but there's a reason they keep being mentioned. They still exist. So let's begin with a general idea of how we feel about spoilers. Like them, hate them?
For me it really depends on the situation. I hate them when it's a book I'm looking forward to reading and the reviewer gives away something important. A very memorable one happened a few years ago and I was spoiled about all the major occurrence in Mockingjay. It turned me off enough that I still haven't picked up the book and probably never will. Still, I sometimes actively seek out spoilers for many reasons; sometimes I need that little push to read a book. I know after Dear John by Nicholas Sparks I was so unhappy with the ending that when I wanted to read The Last Song, I googled to see if it had a happy ending. (I'm not into the depressing endings, life's hard enough as it is).
I was actually cringing as I was reading your response, Mari. I can't stand spoilers. I never want to be spoiled. Never. Ever. No exceptions. We have a mutual friend that reads the last page of a book before reading the actual book and it drives me a little crazy because I need to do stuff linearly. I feel like half the fun in reading is in the discovery of the events. Guessing what will happen, and how it will unfold is awesome. I'm always looking for something new, which means I almost never reread, just because I've already experienced the book. So if you spoil me, I will do my best to brain bleach it out, or just not read it. That's why spoilers in reviews tend to annoy me. Aren't reviews for people before they read the book? Why would they want to know what happens?
You evidently have a strong opinion on spoilers and I agree, it is unfair to be spoiled therefore they shouldn't be present in reviews unless indicated. But, in the end it comes down to the reader and his/her tastes. Some people, like me, sometimes need more information to convince them that a book is worth the read. The only spoilers I pursue are the ones that reveal in one word if it is a happy/sad ending with no further details. Yet there are people, like our friend, who prefer to know what happens beforehand and it has a lot to do with their personality. Just like there are people who like surprise birthday parties and those who despise them. I'm a middle person, I'll be happy there is a birthday party. But there people like you, who likes them (at least in the book scenario) and those like our friends, who hate them. It all comes down to the person.
Meh. I appreciate people are different. As long as they don't spoil me, I'm okay with them researching their own spoilers. The one case where I accept spoilers is when you're doing a review for a series (not the first book). Series build on what's already happened, so I feel like there's an implication that if you read the review, you've already read the other books in the series and it won't spoil the predecessors.
That's also understandable. I think what a lot of people including myself despise is the spoilers in the comments. I don't find many spoilers in reviews, in fact the majority (at least in my experience) are in the comments. So do you think there should be something telling the commentors to not discuss spoilers?
Good point. Um... no? Blogs are a discussion about books, and debating plot points is such a huge part to why you enjoy the book. I mean, the review is for before you read so there should be no spoilers. The comments is for some discussion and personally, I've never dealt with too many spoilers there. I think most people will do a *spoiler* alert or something to notify potential people that may be spoiled. And at some point, it's hard to keep the spoilers away because the sequel to most books have spoilers in their synopsis. I've gotten pretty badly spoiled by a book synopsis.
P.E. and Mari seem to have some differing opinions when it comes to spoilers. What do you think?