Blog Improvement Project Other

BIP #11: Analyze Some Book Reviews!

The BIP Week #11 project was to dissect some book reviews, and analyse the numbers. The idea was to compare the reviews of book bloggers with professional ones, and see if there are any obvious differences. If you are interested in seeing all the figures, then the spreadsheet is here. 

I decided to compare the 8 professional reviews with the 8 blogger reviews and see if I could notice any major differences:

  Average Number of Paragraphs  Average Number of Words Total Number of Personal References
Professional 5.25 550 2
Blogger 7.5 500 78


The most obvious difference is that book bloggers use personal references. In our small sample the blogger made a personal thought or feeling known 39x more than the professional.  This is what I love about book bloggers. I can frequently read professional reviews and at the end still have no idea whether the book was any good.

Bloggers tended to have slightly shorter reviews, and a greater number of paragraphs, but the other statistics were all a lot more similar than I expected them to be. The average number of words in each sentence/paragraph was very similar, although I noticed that I tend to have less words in the sentences I write than the professionals do.

Overall, I was surprised by how similar they actually were, but will stick to reading the reviews of bloggers as I can build up a personal relationship with them, learn their taste in books and therefore trust their judgement.

Are you surprised by the similarity between blogger and professional reviews?

Have you noticed any other major differences between the two?

Do you read professional reviews?