How Accurate Are My Goodreads Recommendations

At the beginning of this month, I moved a lot of books around and I also noticed that my TBR pile was rather lacking. There are a few books that have been there since the dawn of time - even though, I have been working on that, I feel that more often than not Dante's Inferno does not float my boat.

Instead of going through this pile, I decided that the most sensible option would be to find something new to read. I could brows a library, see what is available at the Kindle/Prime free book of the month offer - one can never guess in which direction that goes. However, what I have never tested before was my Goodreads recommendations.

In theory, Goodreads should know best what I like to read. After all, it has been cataloging my reading habits since the last two years. Then it knows that I read "quer durch die Bank" meaning almost anything - from Lee Child to John Green. If there is one algorithm that should be able to find me something to read next, it should be Goodreads. So let's take a look, shall we?

In the first row it suggests me a bunch of YA/Fantasy novels with an angel theme - the only exception being the "The Complete Peanuts".

This is so because I read the "Angelfall" series a few years ago. On top of this, all of them belong to a series and at the moment I just don't feel like reading YA/Fantasy with a hero-theme or start a new series. Skip.

In the next row we find "London Falling", "Rules of Prey", "Better Nate Than Never" among others:

"London Falling" is in there because I leaped up the "Rivers of London" series. Reading the summary it sounds like something I might enjoy as well. Even though a friend rated this book with only one star, Ben Aaronovitch rated it with five.

"Rule of Prey" is recommended because of my affinity to the Jack Reacher books, however, I only trust Lee Child to do this genre properly. Meanwhile, "Better Nate Than Never" is an LGBT+ novel and you can never have enough of those.

In the last row we find "The Adventure of the Peerless Peer" which going by the cover looks like, well how to write this tactfully? ... It looks like smut. However, reading the synopsis it is actually published Sherlock Holmes fanfiction, and thus my interest is peaked. It wouldn't quite make it to the top of the TBR but it's on the list.

The next book is one by Stephan King. This goes onto the list without thinking twice.

The last book to catch my attention is "A Vision of Fire" by Gillian Anderson. While I am not a strong believer that every actor, racing driver et al, should be a novelists, I have also read books by David Duchovny and quite enjoyed them ("Holy Cow" = adorbs; "Bucky F*cking Dent" = touching). On the same basis I am willing to give Gillian Queen Anderson the same chance.

We'll see in the future how this pans out!

How accurate are your Goodreads recommendations, and what is the worst book Goodreads ever recommended to you? 


  1. I never seem to like book recommendations that come from an algorithm. I have not paid a lot of attention to the good reads recommendations but I have tried online recommendation algos and they just don't seem to work for me.
    So I hope you will share your experiences with these books and I would love to know if good reads has cracked the code.

    1. I feel you, the one from amazon never seems to work out for me. Thus I just end up wandering through it without really know what I should pick. Maybe a future blog post ....

  2. Well this seems a little hit and miss! You can never trust an algorithm it seems 😂. I much prefer to choose my books from reviews or personal recommendations x


    1. I think that's my preferred method as well :)


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