Book reviews for those who already read the thing
February 17, 2021 5:59 PM   Subscribe

What I want is a vast source of entertaining, thoughtful people discussing books like in a book club. Podcasts, videos, or articles. I don't need the review to entice me into reading the book. The scenario is that I've already read it, and would like to read this kind of review once I'm done. I'm not sure of how even to search for this. Do I just have to join a book club to make this possible?

Goodreads takes too much work to uncover the reviews that have spoilers. I feel like I'm missing something because all I can find are book review podcasts and online journalism that don't really go in depth for fear of spoiling. Please give me your best in-depth podcasts and sites that discuss a wide range of books. I prefer contemporary fiction, all genres, and occasionally nonfiction.
posted by oxisos to Media & Arts (14 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I just subscribed to Bookforum, which seems like what you’re looking for. I like it very much.
posted by scratch at 6:08 PM on February 17, 2021

Have you checked with your local library? I know that here in Boston if you have a library card you can access reviews written after people have returned their inter library loan books and ebooks straight from their site and online catalog. I know this because I have even written a buch!
posted by floweredfish at 6:10 PM on February 17, 2021

Also, if you search “review of books” (with the quotes), the top few results are likely to suit.
posted by scratch at 6:11 PM on February 17, 2021

There's also the books part of FanFare, here.
posted by ambrosen at 6:20 PM on February 17, 2021 [1 favorite], for SF&F?
posted by clew at 6:31 PM on February 17, 2021 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Sophomore Lit is a podcast where each episode is a discussion of a book or other work of literature that the guest read for class in high school. Guaranteed to have at least a few things you’ve read.
posted by showbiz_liz at 6:37 PM on February 17, 2021 [2 favorites]

372 Pages We'll Never Get Back
posted by phunniemee at 6:50 PM on February 17, 2021

Response by poster: To clarify things a bit more, I want a site or podcast that is filled with spoilers. When I look at some of the suggestions above (Bookforum, my local library), I am noticing the articles/reviews hold back the spoilers. Of the above suggestions, Sophomore Lit seems close, and I welcome suggestions of more vast sites. If a small site, then it needs to be easily browsable to see what the titles are. If you recommend a blog, please recommend one that makes it very clear what books are available in some kind of list.
posted by oxisos at 7:29 PM on February 17, 2021 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I've recently started listening to two podcasts you might find fit the bill: The Spouter-Inn, and Overdue.
posted by Orlop at 7:38 PM on February 17, 2021

Best answer: Seconding Overdue--I really like the hosts.

There was also the Slate Audio Book Club, which sadly doesn't run anymore but has an archive of 129 episodes.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 9:03 PM on February 17, 2021

Best answer: If it's something Mark Oshiro has read, it will be on Since he does one chapter at a time, some comments are marked as spoilers that you have to decrypt, but that's easy enough.
posted by LoonyLovegood at 5:39 AM on February 18, 2021 [1 favorite]

There’s a very large Discord book server I can recommend if you don’t mind something more like a chat system (you can still search the name of the book to see previous discussions). Filled with spoilers—they’re hidden behind a black box, but you just click to reveal/read them. Tons of books. They’re not professional reviews though, just people discussing their thoughts. Mail me if you’d like an invite.
posted by brook horse at 7:08 AM on February 18, 2021

Best answer: It's definitely a niche but Heaving Bosoms is a hilarious and amazing podcast about romance novels. It is two highly intelligent women analyzing the books start to finish with all the spoilers.
posted by magnetsphere at 8:51 AM on February 18, 2021 [1 favorite]

I'm afraid I haven't actually listened to this yet, but just in case it's of interest:

BBC World Book Club - "The world's great authors discuss their best-known novel."
posted by kristi at 11:29 PM on February 22, 2021

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