Well, here we are. The penultimate question in the 30 Days of Books list and it’s sort of an interesting one:
Day 29 – A book everyone hated but you liked
I had thought about this subjectively for a while – what books did I like that everyone didn’t. I mean how do I know what the masses don’t like? And then I realized I don’t need to guess about what readers did and didn’t like – I’ve got actual data right at my fingertips.
So, like a nerd, I exported the scores of the books I’ve rated along with their average values from the Goodreads community and plotted them. Like this:
Now the diagonal line represents where scores would fall if they matched that of the community (which of course can’t happen much, since the community is a mean, but my score only increments in whole numbers). Anyway, there are a couple of things to take from plot.
The first thing that I noticed is that I’m a pretty harsh reviewer. There are a lot more points below the line than above it, showing that I often score books lower than the average Goodreads participant. No grade inflation from me, authors!
The other one is the answer to this question. The red circle represents the book that I liked the most that has the biggest score differential with that of the community at large. Oddly enough, that book represented by that dot is one that I read just this year: THE COOKBOOK COLLECTOR by Allegra Goodman.
I’d given that book five stars, while it barely got above three (3.22) in the community at large. The story set in the boom-bust of the dot-com era at the turn of the last decade resonated with me as I considered my own journey through the biotech bubble.
At the end of that review I wrote; “I don’t know if everyone will find “The Cookbook Collector” as engrossing as I did…” – and clearly a good chunk of everyone did not.
What about you? What’s your favorite book that nobody else seemed to like?