In my review of Divergent, I didn’t reveal a significant choice the main character, Tris, made early on in the book. When I linked to a review by Presenting Lenore, I said “Warning: slight spoiler there about what faction Tris selects. So don’t click if you don’t want to know; on the other hand, Tris makes her choice by page 47.” In the comments to my review, Lenore said, “Oops! I guess I should’ve had a spoiler warning. I just thought her choice was so obvious, I didn’t even think about it!!”
For Divergent, I was probably being ridiculously cautious. It did get me thinking, though…
How much — or how little — to give away in a review or discussion or book talk is hard!
I once listened to a book talk that began, “Melinda was raped at a back to school party…. ” and I was like WHAT? You’re kidding me! How can you tell that up front!
Sometimes, for some books, I like discovering things for myself. Other times, though, it doesn’t matter to me whether or not I know the outcome of a book. As a matter of fact, knowing the ending can make me like a book more, because I get a better appreciation for things like plotting and characterization.
I also look at my blog posts as a mix of review (what works for the book), recommendation (hey, here is a cool book!) and discussion (can you believe what happened?).
And, to be honest, it also depends on how new the book is. At this point, given that Hunger Games is now a trilogy, it’s hardly a spoiler to say who won the Games in book one . . . unless, of course, you’re booktalking it as a recommendation.
What do you consider a spoiler? Does it matter to you as a reader? As a blogger, how much do you tell about what happens in a book?