Discussion: Reviewing ARCs and New Releases vs. Older Backlist Books

A lot of my book reviews in the past month have been for ARCs or new releases, because I’m trying to get caught up on the CRAZY amount of ARCs I requested from Net Galley and Edelweiss+. I also have a mighty mountain of books I’ve purchased in paperback (some as long ago as when I was pregnant with my son in 2014, which I expected to read while I was on maternity leave but instead I just marathoned Buffy and Supernatural on Netflix…) I’d like to get caught up on some of Book Mountain, and I’m debating on whether I should share reviews for these older (some of them 10 years old!) books here.

When you’re reading book reviews, do you prefer to only read about new and upcoming books? Or do you like to hear about books that have been around for a while? (And consequently that may be easier to find on the shelves of your local library!!)

I personally like reviews of both new and upcoming books AND for older books. I follow quite a few blogs, and it seems like a lot of them are reviewing the same few books at any given time (especially new YA Fantasy releases!!) so it can be a bit tiring and I don’t always read all the reviews for these hyped books. I personally LOVE reviews of books that have been out for a while, because these types of reviews have introduced me to books (and authors!) that I really love, that otherwise I’d have likely missed out on entirely!! Plus, for a lot of these romance authors they’ve got an entire backlist of work, so I will read the one book and then hit up my local library and find out that author (I’m looking at you, Eloisa James…) has about a billion books already published, ready and waiting for me to sink into them. And it’s great to not have to wait a hundred years for the next installment of a series. 🙂

So what are your thoughts? Backlisted book reviews A-OK, or are you a up-and-comers only kind of person?

17 comments

  1. All the books. I sometimes prefer backlist just because then I can go immediately \”oh! want! obtain!\” which is not possible with arcs, but I like knowing whats on the horizon too.

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  2. I'm definitely more of a backlist reader, in fact I've never even requested an ARC or accepted a review book, because I don't keep up with new releases that much. I generally discover books by reading other people's reviews and recommendations, and then I add them to my TBR shelf on Goodreads, and generally only get round to reading them several months, or even years later… I'm very disorganised with my reading! :)Great post! 🙂

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  3. I read a lot of ARCs. I try to vary the ones I read between YA and Adult. I have also started adding some Non-Fiction to my list. I do also read and review Backlist books. I they still need love, especially if I am just not taking time to read them. The struggle to keep up with up-and-coming books is tough. Great topic!

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  4. I like to read what I feel like reading, not what I \”should\” or \”have to\” read. Sadly my Book Mountain is being so neglected while I read all these ARCs I've requested, haha! I'll have to request less going forward so I have more time to read books from the Mountain, but they all look so good!That's also my problem with library books… I'll check out anywhere from 20 to 50, and there they sit while I read other books I already own… LOL

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  5. For the book blog, ARCs and new releases. For my other reading time, backlists are great. Especially if I read a new release and fall in love with the writing, I'll go check out the author's entire backlist. Sometimes I will then post reviews on the older books but always.

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  6. Why don't you review backlist books on your blog typically? Is it just too many posts and you find more use in sharing about newer books? Or some other reason? I'd love to know! I also have a tendency to fall in love with a new release and go check out an author's entire backlist… That's what got me stuck with Book Mountain, haha!

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  7. While I'm always excited to see that an anticipated new release is loved and widely reviewed by bloggers but-1- I'm always afraid a reviewer will give too much away, even if it's a tiny detail, so I read minimal reviews .2- I don't like reading about the same book on 20 different blogs.3- I love seeing reviews on older books, especially series, as I may have started the series but not completed it. If it's older, then there's a better chance of finding it at the library or on a used book site, often spending a lot less for the whole series than for one \”new\” release.

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  8. Related to your first point, I sometimes will read something in a review about what they didn't like that at first I didn't notice. Once the bad/annoying/whatever thing is pointed out, though, sometimes that's all I can see. I once read a review of a book I was halfway through (and enjoying) where the reviewer mentioned that almost every sentence started with the same word. Well dangit, I hadn't noticed that, but it sure jumped out at me for the rest of the book and made it a lot less pleasant to read!!

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  9. I used to review mostly ARCs of new books, with just a few older titles thrown in. Now I have kind of reversed my ratio and I read more vintage books than new ones. While it's fun to keep up with what's new, it also gets old reviewing the same books as every other blogger who uses NetGalley. I feel a little more like I'm doing my own thing if I review something older that people might not know about, or that has been forgotten as time has gone on. I also just really like the nostalgic feel of older books!

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