Viewpoint: Overused Phrases in Book Blogging

Hello bookworms!

I saw a discussion recently about well used phrases in book blogging and it got me thinking. I’m well aware that a lot of the time, I use the same descriptors over and over in my reviews (I also use far too many dashes like a poor man’s Emily Dickinson, but that’s another story). I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing – after all, there’s only so many creative ways to say “I couldn’t put this book down” or “it was a hard read” but I know there’s certain phrases that I try to avoid because for some irrational reason, they really annoy me. Is that weird?

1. Gaiman-esque

As though Neil Gaiman is the only fantasy writer out there. 

Don’t get me wrong, I love most of Gaiman’s work but he seems to be the go-to descriptor for a huge number of books. The annoying thing about this phrase is that Gaiman’s work is so varied that this label gets slapped on pretty much anything that’s a tiny bit sinister but also involves fairies/angels/pantomime villains. Please stop getting my hopes up.

2. Absolutely unputdownable

I said page-turner, not Paige Turner adult actress – honestly, the things you see when you forget to put safe search on.

I am guilty of using this one A LOT (also it’s cousin “an absolute page-turner!) although every time I read it I think “urgh, I sound like a Grazia quote” . Aside from the fact that this is factually incorrect, it just seems like a lazy way of summarising a full on fangirl paragraph about why you loved the book. 

3. The next Harry Potter/Handmaid’s Tale/Hunger Games etc.

I mean, it’s not is it. If it’s so similar to one of the biggest books of a generation it’s just going to be a poor imitation. “The potential to be as big as Harry Potter” is a far more interesting sentence. Top marks if it’s also “Gaiman-esque”.

4. An instant classic

Really? I’m pretty certain that only time will tell what becomes a classic and what falls by the wayside. I see this one far too often for it to have any kind of clout. 

5. I totally shipped the relationship between (insert ridiculously named characters)

…or any other phrases that I’m simply too old to understand. I actually had to ask another blogger what the word “ship” meant in that context and I’m too scared to use it in case I look like someone’s Mum trying to be down with the kids. High five guys…no?

What phrases are you guilty of over-using? What phrase really annoys you? Do you feel like you repeat yourself a lot in your reviews? Let me know in the comments!

24 thoughts on “Viewpoint: Overused Phrases in Book Blogging

  1. I use a sh#t ton of the same phrases, my reviews are probably interchangeable. Just swap the book name and author on each of them.šŸ˜‚ Unless I try and write a quotable bit in the hope I might get quoted.šŸ˜‚

    One phrase, well, there’s a few variations is I hate as a fantasy fan is “if you like Game of Thrones you’ll love this” gggrrr.šŸ™„šŸ˜³

    Liked by 1 person

    1. šŸ˜‚ the only repetition I can see in your reviews is the swears! Haha good to know I’m not the only one who tries to write a quotable bit (never gonna happen lol).

      Oh yeah the Game of Thrones comparisons annoy me too. Literally anything with a dragon in it šŸ˜‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ouch!šŸ™„ I don’t swear that much!šŸ¤¬šŸ˜’šŸ˜‚ My review tomorrow has two swear words in it, well, the same one used twice.šŸ˜‚

        I like to think I’m good at the quotable bit, it’s the rest of the review.šŸ˜œ

        True, dragon, it’s Game of Thrones but so much other stuff too and it’s so annoying. Especially when I’ve read the series and nope, not like it at all.šŸ™„šŸ˜œšŸ˜‚

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t know who Neil Gaiman is so that first one went right over my head.

    It is possible for a new novel to outdo its predecessor. George Martin took a lot of his ideas from Tolkien, but I still prefer Martin’s work by far. šŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. šŸ˜Š you might have heard of some of Neil Gaimans work, he wrote Stardust and American Gods that got adapted into a film and TV series respectively.

      I know what you mean but I wouldn’t call Game of Thrones “the next Lord of the Rings”. šŸ˜Š


      1. I don’t know either of those! I generally mostly ready dead authors, so don’t be too surprised šŸ˜‚

        That’s true. Just as we wouldn’t call 50 Shades of Gray the next Twilight, though it is originally its fanfiction.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. This was great and I’m guilty of similar things when I talk about books. Because I flit into every genre and sometimes forget why I’ve purchased something I tend to be ‘pleasantly surprised’ a lot šŸ˜‚ I need to vary my vocabulary more.

    Feel your pain with the Gaiman one. Been let down a few times with that comparison!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m more guilty of not reading the blurb on an ARC properly, requesting it anyway then being “a little disappointed”. I think our brains all have their go to comments. I reckon if I collected up all of my cliche phrases and put them together I could get a coherent review out of them!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. hehe yeah I think we all have things it bothers us to see šŸ˜‰ Yeah I don’t get why people compare things to Gaiman so often- especially since he’s so unique in my opinion. If I see that, my thought is always “really? Not sure I believe you…” Heheh yeah to be fair it’s hard not to say unputdownable/page turner- but they are cliche. I’m so irritated when I see “the next *insert famous title*” Like with the Gaiman thing, my response is always “really?!” Got to admit, I’ve unironically used the word “shipped”- I should be ashamed of myself (I am a little bit šŸ˜‰ )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think you’re the person who explained what “shipped” (shipping?) meant! So yeah, you probably have used it but you can’t help being down with the cool kids šŸ˜Ž. Good to know I’m not the only one who utterly mistrusts those cover quotes!

      Liked by 1 person

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