Bookish Chat : Searching for Spoilers

September 18, 2014 Bookish chat 42

It’s no secret I hate spoilers.  I wrote a post about exactly why I hate spoilers and my little welcome box makes it clear that this is a spoiler free site.  So you’ve got to admit that it’s more than a little ironic that some of the top searches that lead to my blog are for spoilers!


Bookish Chat


It’s also a little sad that people who are ending up here are clearly in the wrong place because I can guarantee they won’t find what they are looking for here.  But why are they spending time googling this information?  Because an incredible amount do.

When I check my Google Analytics and look under organic search; these are some of the top hits:

–  big little lies spoilers

–  the secret place book ending

–   how does the one plus one by jojo moyes end

–  whats the twist in gone girl

And I have numerous variations of all these.  It seems people do actively search these out.  I’m boggled by that!  I don’t really get it.  Why not just…I don’t know….read the book!  Honestly it puzzled me so much that I made a list of why people might search because A) I’m intrigued by it  B) I love my lists!  C) I’m a nerd! and  D) I clearly have too much time on my hands!

Why people might search for spoilers?

They want to pretend they’ve read the book!  They want to stand at the water-cooler and have a conversation all about it but without the effort of actually reading it.  I feel sorry for these people, they are missing out!  And you are fooling no one, we always know if you’ve read the book or not!

It’s not their preferred genre but the book is hyped and they want to see what it’s all about.

They like spoilers (I hear you do exist, you weirdos!).  Knowing what is going to happen increases their enjoyment instead of the other way around.  I do understand a little as I like to reread and it’s a different experience knowing what is going to happen.  But I want the pleasure of discovery on my first read.

Maybe you’ve already read the book and want further clarification on what happened.  Or what someone is thinking about it.  By searching for a spoiler review, you are more likely to find in-depth discussion.

But I still don’t really get!  They are valid reasons but I still love reading and letting the author reveal the story to me in the way it’s meant to be revealed.

Bookish Chat : Do you look for spoilers and if so why?  Do you find like I do that you get loads of searches for them?  Why do you think this is?

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42 Responses to “Bookish Chat : Searching for Spoilers”

  1. Finley Jayne

    That’s kind of weird! I’ve never done this, except for one time-I didn’t want to go through the trauma of reading Allegiant, (last book in the Divergent trilogy), because I heard nothing but bad about it. So I jumped on Wikipedia and read their summary lol. But, that’s the only time I’ve ever done something like that 🙂
    Finley Jayne recently posted…Evaluating How My New Reading System is Going So Far

    • trish

      Oh yes, of course that is another good reason for searching. I have done that when I lost interest in series (books and TV) but like you I use Wikipedia too.
      By the way I didn’t adore Allegiant but I did like it! I loved the ending.

  2. kimbacaffeinate

    I hate spoilers and avoid them in reviews, and writing them. I can imagine people do this though, as there are a few peeps I know who read the last chapter first when starting a book. *blinks* I KNOW..crazy right.
    kimbacaffeinate recently posted…Lock In by John Scalzi

    • trish

      I love that you avoid them as I know I can read your reviews without any fear of being spoiled.
      And I can’t believe I used to do this BUT I used to always read the last page first when I was younger. *faints in recollection *

  3. Rachel

    I definitely don’t do spoilers, but then everyone’s interpretation of what a spoiler is can be different. Jamie did a post on this recently, as did another blogger but I can’t remember who right now… I try to avoid as much as possible, because spoilers for me do as much damage to the enjoyment of a read as hype. However, the only time I would go looking for a spoiler is if it’s a book I know I won’t read, or a series I won’t finish and I want to know what happens to get the gist so I can DNF in peace. So MAYBE on those occasions I’d consider it. But in general? Just no

    R x
    Rachel recently posted…Review: If I Stay

    • trish

      I loved Jamie’s post as it made me think carefully about how even casual references to an ending could be spoilery. I’ve kept it in mind ever since when writing reviews.
      And yes that’s a good reason for searching. I didn’t think of that when writing the post but I’ve done that!

  4. Charleen

    The biggest thing is I could see searching to see how a series ends if you read the first book but decide it’s not for you, but you’re still curious how it ends. I did this recently after DNF’ing the first book in a trilogy… there was one big specific thing I wanted to know about the ending, and I was able to find it pretty quickly.

    So yeah, I do get it… but like you, I’m still surprised when I get those searches… if only because my blog is definitely not what they’re looking for. (But I guess when I put my disclaimer at the beginning of series books saying, “This review does/doesn’t contain spoilers for previous books,” sticking that word “spoilers” in there makes my review a more likely target for that search.)
    Charleen recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Five Authors I’ve Only Read One Book From But Need to Read More

    • trish

      I think the same, because my front page mentions the word spoilers and of course the book title, then we get a reverse SEO kickback! Oh well, hopefully we make them curious enough to read the book instead! You never know :O
      I can see why you would search for spoilers in that case. My first port of call is wikipedia though as I know I’ll get the answer there. And I do that sometimes with TV series too, I lose interest but still check to see what happened as I don’t want to watch but am still a little curious.

      • Charleen

        Unless it’s not a popular enough book for Wikipedia (this one wasn’t). But it’s a good first place to look.

        But really, I could only see doing that for a series. If it’s a single book, I’m either going to be curious enough to read it all the way through, or I’m not going to care enough to wonder how it ends (unless maybe it was a 1000+ page book).
        Charleen recently posted…Bookish (and not so bookish) Thoughts – #34

  5. Dee @ Dee's Reads

    Oh my gosh this is so hilarious! I never knew ppl actually like spoilers, even search for them! 🙂 I have never slight out spoilers. I have slight out a place where I can discuss a book without spoiling, like the end of Endless Knight by Kresley Cole. Turns out I just emailed Jessica @ Step of Fiction lol. I didn’t want to do it on twitter cuz duh. Or my blog in the comments either.
    This whole thing has me so curious! I’m also now curious what the top searches are for my blog now…lol.
    Dee @ Dee’s Reads recently posted…The TBR Tag – I was tagged!

    • trish

      I often check what the top searches on my blog are as it just gives me an idea of what people like or don’t like. And I try to use that info to do more of that!
      One thing I love about finding the bookish community is that you now know who to turn to when you HAVE to talk more about a book. Like you I don’t really use my blog for that but DM’s on twitter or GR are perfect!

  6. Quinn @ Quinn's Book Nook

    I honestly don’t mind spoilers. I mean, if I am reading someone’s review, I want the spoilers to be clearly marked so that I don’t have to read them if I don’t want to, but I don’t mind them. And sometimes I do want to know the ending of a book before I get there.

    That’s because I can get very stressed sometimes, and then I can’t enjoy the book because I’m too busy freaking out. But then, when I know the basics of the ending (not everything, but maybe just how the characters end up) then I can prepare myself, and read the rest. For me, the enjoyment of the book is rarely the twist ending or the surprise ending. It’s getting to know the characters and seeing their journey.

    But there are exceptions. Like for Harry Potter. No way did I want to know any of the spoilers. And the same thing with the I Hunt Killers series that I just finished by Barry Lyga. But often, I need to know that the characters will be alright in the end, or if they won’t be I need to prepare myself.
    Quinn @ Quinn’s Book Nook recently posted…Advice Needed: Goodreads and TBR Organization

    • trish

      I understand exactly what you mean and I can see how that works for you. For me the moment of the reveal or the sudden twists that make me catch my breath are the best part of the book for me and I don’t want to lose that. But I know that doesn’t apply to everyone, plus I read a lot of thrillers and it’s even more important there.
      I love that you care though and just want everyone to be ok 🙂 Or build up to acceptance if not. I can see how spoiling yourself deliberately just makes it a better read for you. I wonder why you had exceptions though. Is it because you trusted the authors and wanted to read the book as they intended or is just because you loved those books so much that you only wanted to experience the adventures first hand.

  7. Rita @ My Home of Books

    No way! I need to be surprised and that’s why I don’t reread books. I need the rush of discovering new details, whether books, movies, tv, I don’t want to know. It will color my whole experience if I already know the ending or twist. That’s why I don’t enjoy mystery books where they introduce us to the criminal up front and show how/why he did it.

    Thanks for a good discussion!
    Rita @ My Home of Books recently posted…The Lemon Orchard Review

    • trish

      I agree! And I feel a bit cheated too when we know too early on whodunnit! It really decreases my enjoyment of the book unless the characters are amazing. I think most people who like thrillers, want the pleasure of solving the mystery themselves. It’s a huge part of the attraction as far as I’m concerned.

  8. Lola

    I think it’s pretty common for search terms involving spoilers land to a book blog as it usually does match the title of the book. I just commented on a post about search terms on another blog and when I took a look at my search terms there also was one which included the word spoiler. While I never include spoilers in my reviews either.

    I actually searched for spoilers a few times, once when I wanted to know if I wanted to continue Vampire Academy. If I hadn’t spoiled myself I probably wouldn’t have read past book 3. Or if you hear people talking about a book you never plan on reading, but you are intrigued about what happens? I don’t search for spoilers of books I eventually plan on reading and even if I don’t plan on reading them I usually aren’t curious enough to search for spoilers, but not read the book.

    I wish I could ask some of those searches why they search for spoilers, it would be interesting to hear their reasoning behind it.
    Lola recently posted…Lola’s Ramblings: The Bookish Seven Deadly Sins Tag

    • trish

      It makes sense Lola, I can see why I get so many hits as the SEO is working. Just not in the way that the searchers want it to :O
      Oh and I like that you seeked out a spoiler and then it made you want to continue reading. I hope some of the people searching for spoilers on books end up reading them too. I’d like to think they read the review after landing on it but I doubt it 🙁
      And like you I’d love to ask them why they are searching, I think it would be pretty insightful.

    • trish

      Oh I love ReCaptains but that is just refreshing myself because my book memory seems to get worse and worse. And of course as my reviews are spoiler free they are useless for filling in the blanks.
      I hadn’t really thought of that reason for searching for spoilers but it’s a very valid one. And one I do use!

  9. Wendy @ Book Scents

    No way no way no way!! I absolutely haaaaate spoilers. I want to read it! bc if it’s spoiled then all the anticipation is taken away! I’m also like this for TV shows. I will even change the channel if a commercial for the next episode or something is on and i’m not caught up with the show. 🙂
    Wendy @ Book Scents recently posted…Football Friday Feature Kick Off!

    • trish

      I know, I KNOW! It’s annoying when people drop spoiler bombshells with no warning. I find twitter is lethal and I have to avoid it when certain TV shows are on as otherwise I end up spoilt and cross!

  10. Cayce

    I sometimes do search for spoilers (on Goodreads). Mostly, when I am curious about… something, but not curious/interested enough to actually read the book. Lol. Not going to pretend I read the book though. Who does that??

    • trish

      I don’t think I’ve ever done that on a book but I do for TV shows sometimes just to see what everyone is talking about. And no I don’t pretend I’ve watched it :O I do think non readers do sometimes pretend to have read books though and when you talk about the book, it is very obvious they haven’t :O

  11. acps927

    I think the only time I actively searched for spoilers was after I read We Were Liars and wanted to see how other people interpreted the ending, especially after seeing the comments on my blog from people who had looked at differently than I did. But other than that sort of reason, why would you do it?! Just read it!
    acps927 recently posted…About a Writing Conference and Some Soul Searching

      • trish

        I think that is a good reason to search. I don’t think I’ve ever done it but I can see why someone would. But what if you found out something amazing happened that made you want to read on but now you know what it is? That is both good and bad, in my eyes anyway.
        And I can understand searching for spoilers when you want to check other peoples responses to a book. I did that after Gone Girl, I had to see what people were saying and I needed more of a discussion than a normal book review would give me.

  12. Ana @ Read Me Away

    I think the only time I searched for spoilers was for a book series that I really had no desire to read, but I wondered why everyone was so in love with it. I wasn’t really blown away, to be honest, haha! But for books that I do want to read someday, I won’t search for spoilers. At least on purpose. But accidentally encountering some spoilers in a review is completely different all together! 🙁 But that’s another story for another day, haha!
    Ana @ Read Me Away recently posted…Review 107: Landline (Rainbow Rowell)

    • trish

      If you have no intention of reading the book but are just curious, I can see why you’d search. I suppose that is part of the reason behind my hits as well. But I want to tell them, READ THE BOOKS! Especially as the books they are searching for are great ones!

      And urrgghh, those unflagged spoilers are super annoying. It doesn’t take much to warm that you are about to drop a spoiler. Unless you want to annoy your followers, then carry on!

  13. Jackie

    I have a habit of starting series but never finishing them. Sometimes the series is dragged on too long, and I lose interest. Or sometimes I didn’t like the first book, and I’ve determined there is no way I will suffer through anymore. But even though I don’t want to spend anymore time with the series, I’m still curious about how it ends. That was the case with the Divergent books. Everyone was freaking out about how the series ended. Buuuuut, I didn’t like the first book in the series, so I wasn’t going to read on. Still, I wanted to know what all the kerfuffle was about, so I searched for spoilers 🙂
    Jackie recently posted…The Mood Reader

    • trish

      I can really see why people would search out spoilers for series as you have already invested time into reading some of them. I have a zillion series that I’m in the middle of but still think I’ll finish them someday (I’m deluded!) so have resisted the urge so far to check for spoilers, coz if I do read them, I don’t want to know what will happen. Once you’ve made that decision not to read on though, then it makes sense to see what actually happened.

  14. Bea @Bea's Book Nook

    I don’t mind minor spoilers but I hate major ones. Let me find out for myself! I generally avoid spoilers when writing my reviews but there have been a few times when I couldn’t write about a book’s problems without revealing spoilers. In those cases, I clearly mark the post and give warnings within the review before they occur.

    I do get the occasional search where someone is looking for spoilers. Why it brings them to me, who knows?

    • trish

      Oh yes! That is my pet hate when it comes to spoilers. It doesn’t take much to throw out a little warning first and give people the choice.
      Glad to see you get these searches too, it’s a lot more common than I realised.

    • trish

      Confession time! I used to read the ending first when I was younger! Now I live in fear of spoilers and I can’t understand why I used to do that. If I accidentally find out what happens in a book, I just have no interest in reading it anymore. Like you, the book is ruined in my eyes.

  15. Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    I definitely don’t post spoilers (although I saw Jamie’s post and I DO sometimes say that there was a twist I liked – for me, when I read that there’s a twist it just increases my anticipation of a book!). I have searched for what happened at the ending of a book to refresh my memory before reading the next one, and I think I might have searched for spoilers for a book that really wasn’t for me, but I was REALLY curious about a specific part of it after reading some reviews. But that’s only happened maybe once or twice (I can’t even think of a specific circumstance, but I’m pretty sure I’ve done it). Guess it’s good that there are some people out there who DO post spoilers! 🙂
    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction recently posted…5 Star Review – Rock Angel by Jeanne Bogino

    • trish

      Jamie’s post made me think a lot about spoilerish elements in my reviews. I do mention twists (just that they exist) but to talk about the book, I kind of need to. Whether or not a twist works or not, can make or break a book for me so I need to talk vaguely about them.
      And LOL, yes, there is a demand for spoilers….maybe we should think about that!

  16. Asti @ Oh, the Books!

    I never look for spoilers. I actually prefer going into books completely blind so I only randomly read reviews and rarely do more than look at a cover before deciding to read a book. (Okay, I do look at Goodreads reviews. But still, for some reason the synopsis is ALWAYS the last thing I look at. I’ll read reviews but not the synopsis. I just don’t want to know, lol.)

    This has got me thinking though, if there is this desire for spoilers, maybe we should use it for our blogs! Make like a master spoiler post where you spoil a bunch of books? That way you can get traffic from those “weirdos” (as you put it) and reek the benefits! Muhahahaha.
    Asti @ Oh, the Books! recently posted…Color Song Matching Game + Giveaway!

  17. trish

    Look at you hatching another evil plan to take over the blogging world! LOL I like your thinking, I have already alienated them all by calling them weirdos though so someone else will have to do it!
    I’m like you I like going in blind and only glance at the blurb. And sometimes they give away far too much info, I read one book lately and they gave away a plot twist on it. It’s on the blurb and on GR for all to see. I was so glad I hadn’t spotted that before I read the book, I would have been raging.

  18. Elizabeth

    I am the WORST about looking up spoilers haha! I’ve gotten a lot better about it, but it mostly comes from a fear of falling apart at the end of the book (aka I’m halfway through the book and it looks like yet again my favourite character is going to die. You have to emotionally prepare for that!) That being said, more often I look up spoilers because it’s a book I know I’m never going to read, am not interested in reading…but people talk about what was great/terrible about the ending, or there’s this huge twist! I don’t want to read the book but…well, I’m terribly curious. I still want to know what happens!
    Elizabeth recently posted…If Disney Characters Were Cast: Tortall

    • trish

      Isn’t it funny that some people actively seek them out. I love the comments I got as they do go someway to explaining this. But nope, I still won’t be doing it!

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