Welcome to What Do You Think Thursday, a periodic blog feature in which I raise some question I've been pondering.
I love book recommendations. Book recommendations are part of why I became a blogger -- I like getting recs and giving recs. But what is the deal with the Goodreads book recommendations? Is it just me who gets these weird, WTF suggestions? I don't usually star-rate books, so wondering if that is why the GR algorithm is broken for me, or if this is a problem for everyone.
Here's some examples:
I read Saints and Misfits, about a Muslim American girl trying to find her place in her religious community and the world. Based on that, here's what Goodreads suggested:
Okay, then.... not really seeing ANY connection. At all.
I also read Want, a futuristic sci-fi in which a diverse Scooby gang battles an evil tycoon in a polluted, disease-stricken world. Based on that, here's what Goodreads recommended:
WHAT EVEN??? Don't get me wrong, I love Beverly Cleary. But what exactly is the algorithm that connects a YA sci-fi set in Taipei with a chapter book about two sisters on Klickitat Street?
I also read Perfect Ten, a YA about a gay teen who does a love spell to find himself a boyfriend. It's a contemporary YA romantic comedy. Based on this, here's what Goodreads thought I should try:
Then I read The Fashion Committee, a contemporary YA about two kids involved in a competition to win a scholarship to a design school. Based on that, here's what Goodreads suggested:
Hmmm. I'm seeing a pattern here, Goodreads. A pattern of book recommendations that have no relation to the books I'm reading.
Please tell me in comments: does Goodreads give you weird recs, or is it just me??
It's not just you. I get terrible book recommendations. Just looking now, because I'm reading Gemina (space stuff) I'm being recommended: A Game Worth Watching (about a tomboy). I do not use goodreads to find new books, which seems silly, because I feel that's what it should be for (in addition to the tracking obviously) but whatever.ReplyDelete
They could do so much better!Delete
Definitely not just you. Goodreads is not good at recommendations! Ironic considering its functions lol...ReplyDelete
I think I turned mine off because I don't see them anymore lolReplyDelete
They're SO ridiculous!
Amazon is somewhat better but they think because you enjoyed ONE book about " a futuristic sci-fi in which a diverse Scooby gang battles an evil tycoon in a polluted, disease-stricken world" that you want to read 1000 books about he same thing lol
For What It's Worth
Ooh -- didn't know I could turn them off. I will look into that.Delete
OMG these recommendations! HAHA! I almost never even glance at them to notice anything weird on mine, to be honest. But now I think I do just to see what weird suggestions I may receive.ReplyDelete
Check them out and let me know!Delete
Yeah Goodreads is the worst at recommendations. They are never anything I would be interested in or anything related to what I read. They are crazy.ReplyDelete
I mean, if it's paid advertising books they are recommending, just label it as that. I get the same books so often I have to wonder...Delete
Its never right for me for recommendations. Also what about certain people who recommend books or do quizzes that you would never do ever.ReplyDelete
Their quizzes could be better!!Delete
Oh wow. Mine have never been that off. Haha. Mine are usually other popular YA titles, I don't pay GR recs any mind though.ReplyDelete
You are lucky!Delete
This is hilarious and it's not just you. I rant about this to my husband all the time! He doesn't get it but it drives me crazy. I want actual recs based on the books I've loved, which is basically the whole reason I signed up with Goodreads in the first place! I really thought they'd be better. But instead it's all from people I follow, which works better in the end anyway. But it's still disappointing. My latest rec from Goodreads: Because I'm currently reading Bad Romance by Heather Demetrios, it thinks I should read Ice Wolves by Amie Kaufman, a middle-grade fantasy book about wolves and dragons that are sworn enemies, that comes out next March. It sounds awesome and I'll read it but nothing at all like Bad Romance.ReplyDelete
Yes, exactly. What makes them think those books have anything in common??Delete
hahaha Goodreads is always recommending some off the wall stuff to me. They must get money to promote certain books or something.ReplyDelete
That's what I'm wondering. They also recommend certain books over and over.Delete
Wow...Goodreads is giving you some wonky recommendations! I'm actually kind of surprised by this - although there've been a few times when I've been mildly confused by what Goodreads recommends to me, most of the time they're spot-on. In fact, several of the books on my TBR are only on there because Goodreads suggested them. I've had a decent track record with the stuff I HAVE read based on their recommendation, too. Sorry to hear your experience hasn't been as positive. :-(ReplyDelete
My only thought is that the recs rely heavily on users' star ratings and that I rarely do that. Glad you have better results!Delete
I've only followed Goodreads recommendations about three times in total, and even though all of them have been favourites of mine which were well recommended, I looked into the books first. Because I know sometimes the recommendations can be totally bogus!ReplyDelete
I don't even look at the recommendations anymore. They don't fit what I read.ReplyDelete