Musing About Things: The Hype

Musing About Things - Book Munchies

Hi guys, welcome to Book Munchies’ Musing about Things: A Discussion (Post). Inspired by memes such as Should Be Reading‘s Musing Monday & Caffeinated Book Reviewer‘s Caffeinated Confessions (etc.), this is a Book Munchies discussion post, where I’ll be rambling about (mostly) book-related things and hopefully you guys will join in on the fun too (:

(Happy St. Patrick’s Day!)

So today’s topic is: The Hype!

Happy Endings - Max - hype

This topic is inspired by Miss Wendy Darling of The Midnight Garden, who made an interesting comment about people being angry about books that are hyped on twitter.

The number one definition hype according to Urban Dictionary (because we all know that’s straight up solid facts*) is:

A fad. A clever marketing strategy which a product is advertised as the thing everyone must have, to the point where people begin to feel they need to consume it.

*Please be aware that Urban Dictionary is not straight up facts.

Regular dictionaries go with:

extravagant or intensive publicity or promotion.

Point is, some books are more hyped up than other, you’ll simply see more promotion and expect more out of the book. The question is how do handle the hype machine and the hyped book.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The good part of the hype machine is if marketing does it job correctly, you will have heard and seen this book and know that there is nothing that’s going to stop you from reading this book, because you have to know for yourself what’s so darn awesome about this book.

The bad is usually the ridiculous expectation that’s suddenly paced on the books. I don’t know about you, but when most of the readers/bloggers I know and trust start raving about something, expectations rocket up. And that definitely means increase chance of the book failing for me. Sometimes I think (0ver)hyped books get less of a chance to do well almost.

The ugly, has to do with what Wendy mentioned about people being angry about books that are hyped. It’s not the book’s fault or the publishers/marketing team for doing a good job of promoting it. Suddenly the reading experiences can be ruined. I feel like the book isn’t even given the chance to perform. Isn’t the point of reading a book is to try to enjoy it? Why get angry at what you can’t change. But suddenly it’s become “judging the book by it’s cover” before it’s even given the chance to prove anything.

The Examples:

Fangirl - Rainbow RowellThe Coldest Girl in Coldtown - Holly BlackThe Winner's Curse - Marie Rutkoski

1. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell: Let me tell. I was so scared to read Fangirl for quite a while. Everyone just seemed to love it, and I would have been so sad if I didn’t enjoy it and you know be that person who didn’t find it awesome. This was one of these books were I definitely needed sometime in between the hype and when me reading it to get a better perspective of the book.

In case you wondering, I ended up loving the book (4 star!).

2. Coldest Girl in Cold Town by Holly Black: So I saw this book around a lot. And Holly Black is pretty popular. I’ve read a few of her books and they were okay to me, but everyone and their mother was saying how this was the vampire book that’ll get you to love vampire books again. I had to give it a try. There was definitely some time between hype and read, simply because I didn’t want to trust the hype.

Funny enough, despite lowering the expectations, I still really disliked this book. This was definitely one of those books where  I didn’t get the hype. This is an example of those (utter) disappointment and confusion of why the book is so popular (for me anyway).

3. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski. So this is probably one of the most recently hyped book in the YA world. I was overly ecstatic when I managed to get a copy of the eARC. Some of my most favourite bloggers loved it. It was getting fantastic review, awesome promotion on all the social media outlets. You couldn’t go around the YA without knowing or having heard of this book.

Once again, after the ridiculous excitement of getting the book, I went into deep fear that this book wouldn’t live up to the expectations. I was expecting mind-blowing amazing-ness.  And I didn’t really have the chance to leave a lot of time in between, since I wanted to get the book review during the release date. I definitely had to make sure to get my expectation in check.

Thankfully, this book ended up being extremely enjoyable. I was actually a bit worried near the beginning because it was a bit of slower start, but eventually it got up the expectation. It didn’t blow my mind like I though it would, but I made sure to know that hype sometimes can get away from you.


Overall, hyped books always leave me a little wary, despite being just as excited for the book. It’s sometimes hard to just ignore it because I know sometimes I contribute to it, too. When you really like a book you want to share with everyone right? You know them to know just how amazing  it is, and the problem is not everyone’s taste is exactly the same.

I know I have to try to keep my expectation in check and sometimes for books I know I want to read (that are really hyped), I need to avoid other peoples opinions/reviews on it first, simply so I can make my own judgement call on it without other biases. Or just to give a little it of time in between.

So guys, do you like the hype machine? Avoid it with a passion? Learn to deal with it? Coping mechanism?

Is there any books you can’t handle because of the hype?  Change in habits because of hype? Let me know!

(PS. I apologies if this post seems all over the place and doesn’t make sense, I was really tired when I wrote it and I think I lost track of what I was trying to say, haha. Point is, tell me what you think about hype around books!)

Author: Cyn

noun. a bum OT, procrastinator. reader. eater. sleeper. music listen-er. movie go-er. Loves food too much.

0 Replies to “Musing About Things: The Hype”

  1. YES. Sometimes the hype is good, but sometimes it’s bad. I usually read a few positive AND negative reviews before checking a book out, just to balance my expectations. And I think we have similar reading tastes! I gave Fangirl 4 stars, I DNFed (but might try again) The Coldest Girl in Cold Town and really enjoyed The Winner’s Curse, lol! Lovely discussion, Cyn. <3

    1. Agree, definitely need to try to balance expectations!
      Great minds think alike, I guess 😉 I only finished Coldtown because I did it for book club :/ But yes, Fangirl and The Winner’s Girl are lovely reads! Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I don’t mind the hype – but hate to be disappointed when the book doesn’t live up to it. On the other hand, it gives me something to talk about too 🙂

    1. Very true!
      Hype is nice because it can bring a book to my attention, but it’s always sad when it doesn’t live up to expectations.

  3. I don’t feel angry about hype and try to approach each book with an open mind. But I agree that hype can set up high and/or unrealistic expectations and actually be counterproductive sometimes.

    Jen @ YA Romantics

    1. Good game plan! I always need to remind myself to not set realistic expectations.
      Thanks for stopping by!

  4. It’s opposite in my case. I’m a bit cut out from the reading world. I haven’t even read half of the hyped books, leave apart the non-hyped ones. So hype helps me discover these books. Now-a-days blogging is doing the same thing. 🙂

    1. I’m glad hype is helping you find books! The good news is some hype books are worth the hype 😉

  5. I don’t mind the hype too much. I usually stick to certain themes in books that I tend to enjoy, and if one of those books everyone else is raving about falls into that category, all the better for me to check it out. But, I can totally agree on how it can set the bar so high, possibly making the read and anticipation less exciting. Great post idea, Cyn 🙂

    1. I think I’m kind of the same. I usually gravitate to hyped books that already fall in the categories I like, too. I definitely have to remind my self to set realistic expectations! Thanks for stopping by!

  6. The hype doesn’t bother me. I still pick what I want to read and usually ignore the hype. Here is my post: Mixed Book Bag

    1. That’s a good way keep reading what you want!

  7. Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s not. Good, because it gets people to read the book. Bad, if people are disappointed. I agree with the person above who said you need to find bad reviews, too.


    1. Definitely! Finding a balance in expectation is key, I think.

  8. Most of the time I enjoy hyped books, and they help me figure out what I want to read. Sometimes I don’t like a book (e.g., Divergent), but that isn’t the hype’s fault. It just wasn’t for me.

  9. Ugh hype sucks. I usually try to avoid it as much as possible by waiting until the hype surrounding the book(s) is mostly gone before attempting to read it…but it’s so disappointing when your reading experience is negatively affected. I haven’t read The Winner’s Curse yet, but I definitely had problems with hype when it came to Fangirl and The Coldest Girl in Coldtown. I was expecting to LOVE LOVE LOVE both of those books, and I just…didn’t. Fangirl was pretty good, but it still only got 4 stars from me, and to be honest after thinking about it, it’s probably more like a 3.5. And I didn’t like The Coldest Girl in Coldtown very much at all. Such a disappointment!

  10. For me usually a hype around a book does exactly what it is supposed to do I guess – it makes me curious and amongst all the books which present itself to you, you think ‘Oh, I gotta read this’ (I’m a marketers dream here ) At the moment, as my TBR pile is high and review pile ever growing, it would have to wait in line though – that’s my way of avoiding the hype-disappointment.But it does make me sometimes feel left behind in a way. There is me talking about a book when everyone read it 2 years ago 🙂

  11. Oh gosh. I think it’s because of the hype surrounding these books that make me stay away from them. My taste is very different from the current trending plots and tropes that I think any hyped book means I’m not going to like it! Yikes. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, and your post certainly has got me thinking, Cyn!

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