Question: Should Reviewers Post Spoiler Warnings For Past Books’ Events?

Posted March 27, 2013 by Carmel in Question / 23 Comments


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I have two different answers to this question and they are dependent on whether I look at it from a reviewer’s POV or from that of a reader. As a book blogger I’d have to go with no because I want my reviews to be read by the largest audience possible and that means no spoilers. But then again, I know when I personally visit other blogs and see a review for an installment in a series that I’m not 100% up-to-date on I will typically skim the review because you never know! No one likes to have an ending ruined.

From a reader’s perspective, there’s nothing I enjoy more than gushing about the latest book in my favourite series online with my friends. Being able to link the latest installment to a previous novel’s happenings makes me feel like I have a close, insider’s-type connection to the book. When I’ve been following the same characters for 5+ installments, I know and love the author’s writing style and, I’m really only reading to spend some quality time with my favourite paranormal personalities.

What about you?


Yea or nay on review spoilers?


Carmel Signature

Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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23 responses to “Question: Should Reviewers Post Spoiler Warnings For Past Books’ Events?

  1. I guess I like it b/c I want to know a small little summary of what happens in the last book in case I forgot and plus I”m a spoiler whore, so even if I hadn’t read the series who cares. But for past books as long as it’s not a huge spoiler or anything I think it is okay to include them.

  2. I try to be as spoiler free as possible when I review. Every once in a while one may slip past me, but those are usually on books that have been out for a while (a year or more) and that I’m just now getting to read.

  3. Bea

    I prefer spoiler free also. If it can’t be spoiler free, then there should be a prominent warning so the reader can decide whether to keep reading or stop. My reviews are usually spoiler free but if I do have spoilers I state so at the beginning of the review.

  4. I think there should be no spoilers for the book you’re reviewing, but it’s okay and sometimes simply unavoidable to include spoilers for previous books in the series. For me that’s to be expected – how else should you talk about the new developments and changing relationships between characters? Also, if someone is considering to start a series they’d maybe better read a review for book 1 than for book 5… I never read reviews for later books in series I don’t know because a) I know I would spoiler myself and b) I’d have no idea what/who the hell these people are talking about anyway.

  5. I hate spoilers as a reader so for the most part I don’t read reviews unless I’ve read the book. I like to get an idea of a reviewer’s general feelings. I’ll then go back and read the reviews.

    For books as part of a series I don’t think spoilers for previous books can be avoided. A a reviewer I use a book blurb/summary and then discuss how the book made me feel. Great post!!

  6. I agree with both of your thoughts. I don’t want to read a spoiler in a review and I usually try to stay away from reviews til I read the book myself unless it’s the 1st book in a series I thought about reading and I want to see if I should move it up my TBR list.

    As a reviewer I do my best not to have spoilers but when you are reveiwing a book in the middle of a series it gets harder not to spoil eariler books so I try to add a warning that there may be spoilers to early books. But really it should be common sense that the review of say book 5 could have minor series spoilers. (shrugs)

    The closest I get to having spoilers is in my discussion posts for read a longs. And then I clearly warn about spoilers. Because I’ve read the book as a group and we talk about it in length.

  7. I prefer spoiler free, but sometimes, as a reviewer, there are things that I just have to vent about. Usually, these are things that bug me in a book. I put them at the end and make sure to warn readers there’s a spoiler section.

  8. I agree with no spoilers for the current book, but I think some (non-major) spoilers for the previous book(s) are often unavoidable. I do appreciate a warning – big and loud and right at the top – if that’s the case.

  9. Melanie

    I think that if your review has spoilers for previous books in the series, there should e a warning at the beginning of the review.

  10. I try to be as spoiler free as possible. And I like that in the reviews I read also – but sometimes you can’t even help. Heck, I just read The Collector (Dante Walker) – and just the title of the second book is a spoiler – so again I think it is dependent on the book.