Ten of Our Top Reviews of All Time!

Posted by Danny on September 5, 2017

Goodreads Turns Ten is sponsored by Audible. Enjoy a free book with your trial.

In the last year, Goodreads surpassed two major milestones—65 million members joined the site, and, coincidentally, these readers have written 65 million book reviews.

With so many people and so much chatter, it's no surprise that some books got you talking—and more riled up—than others. In honor of our anniversary, we thought we'd round up some of the most commented and liked reviews. Some are glowing, a few are scathing, but almost all are outright hilarious. So, for fun, let's take a look at a few highlights from the book reviews you loved most…

1) The site's most popular review (with 19,010 likes) is Katrina Passic Lumsden's take on Fifty Shades of Gray. Katrina has some strong feelings about the first book in this bestselling series and she uses a bevy of GIFS to her comedic advantage. Our favorite part? The word count included at the end of her review. As Katrina notes, the phrase "inner goddess" was referenced 58 times in the book.

      Word Count:
      "Oh My" - 79
      "Crap" - 101
      "Jeez" - 82
      "Holy (shit/fuck/crap/hell/cow/moses)" - 172
      "Whoa" - 13
      "Gasp" - 34
      "Gasps" - 11
      "Sharp Intake of Breath" - 4
      "Murmur" - 68
      "Murmurs" - 139
      "Whisper" - 96
      "Whispers" - 103
      "Mutter" - 28
      "Mutters" - 23
      "Fifty" - 16
      "Lip" - 71
      "Inner goddess" - 58
      "Subconscious" - 82

2) The second-most popular review (with 15,979 likes) comes from the author of the book itself. Confused by the amount of people who rated his as-yet-released book Doors of Stone, Patrick Rothfuss offers up an explanation…

"Time travelers love my books.

This is strangely reassuring, as it lets me know that, eventually, I do finish my revisions, and the book turns out good enough so that I still have a following out there in the big ball of wibbly-wobbly…timey-wimey…stuff that I like to think of as the future.

I would also like to say, future readers, that I appreciate your taking time to read and review my books. It's really flattering knowing that even with time-travel technology at your disposal, you'd rather read my stuff and mention it here on Goodreads, rather than, say, hunt dinosaurs, get drunk with da Vinci, or pants Hitler."

3) In the third most beloved review, liked by 6,613 readers, Joe writes a very-abbreviated synopsis of Twilight

First 200 pages:
"I like you, Edward!"
"You shouldn't! I'm dangerous!"
"I like you, Edward!"
"But I'm dangerous!"

Next 50 pages:
"I'm a vampire!"
"I like you, Edward!"
"But I'm a vampire! I'm dangerous!"
"I like you, Edward!"

Next 100 pages:
"I like you, Edward!"
"You smell good, Bella. I'm dangerous!"
"I like you, Edward!"
"Damn, you smell good."
"I like you, Edward!"
"Also, I glow in sunlight."

Next 50 pages:
(I wish I was kidding)

Last 100 pages:
"Help me, Edward! I'm being chased!"
"I'll save you!"
"Help me, Edward! I'm scared!"
"I'll save you!"
"Oh, Edward!"
"You smell good."

4) Tamara's review of The Book Thief also proved to be quite popular over the years...

"I give this 5 stars, BUT there is a disclaimer: If you want a fast read, this book is not for you. If you only like happy endings this book is not for you. If you don't like experimental fiction, this book is not for you.

If you love to read and if you love to care about the characters you read about and if you love to eat words like they're ice cream and if you love to have your heart broken and mended on the same page, this book is for you."

5) Another popular review from an author came from Marie Lu who offered this explanation for giving her book, Legend, a five-star review.

"Well, it's mine…so, er…yeah, a little biased. :) Shameless. I know, I know!"

6) Holly offered these words of wisdom for anyone who may have avoided reading Outlander based on her initial review

"A special note to those who say my review stopped them from reading this book: No no no! Read it! I actually reread the whole series last summer and enjoyed it immensely. Just read it for what it is: ludicrous, well-written, humorous, delicious TRASH. Just don't expect it to be the most brilliant novel ever written and you'll be fine."

7) Oriana had nothing but amazing things to say about Donna Tartt's Goldfinch

"So listen. Look. I am a READER, right? I mean, I read all the time, everywhere, every day, a book a week. But most of the time the book I'm reading is a dull throb beneath my fingers, a soft hum behind my eyes, a lovely way to spend a bit of time in between things as I meander through my life. You know? It's something I adore, but softly, passively, and often forgetfully—very nice while it's happening, but flitting away quickly after I'm on to the next.

And then sometimes there is a book that is more like a red hot fucking coal, a thrum nearly audible whenever I'm close to it, a magnetic pull that stops me doing anything else and zings me back so strongly that I just want to bury myself in its tinnitus at all times—five minutes in line a the bank, two minutes in the elevator, thirty seconds while my coffee date checks her email—gorging myself with sentences and paragraphs until the whole world recedes and shrivels into flat black-and-white nothing.

This, this, this is one of those books. It's a book that bracingly reaffirms my faith in literature, making me endlessly astonished by its power and poise and brilliance. I know I am constantly chided for hyperbole, but this is truly one of the greatest books I've ever read."

8) Jennie Menke had a decidedly different take on The Goldfinch

"To anyone wondering if they should still read this book, since reviewers are so divided (eg you either LOVE it or HATE it): by all means, YES. Read it! But: if you find you are hating it within 100 pages, just put it down and walk away. Because it won't ever get better for you (Really. do as I say and not as I do: Put. It. Down.). For those who LOVE this book: Good for you! I am truly happy for you. There is nothing better than a book you love!"

9) YA author Veronica Roth had a one-word review for John Green's The Fault in Our Stars

10) Finally, Jon offers up a single photo for his review of To Kill a Mockingbird

See complete coverage of the Goodreads Ten-Year Anniversary Celebration, including:
The Best Books of the Decade, Chosen by You
Your Favorite Authors' Top Ten Favorite Books
Ten Ways You Know You're a Goodreads Member
Participate in our Hide-a-Book Day on September 18

Comments Showing 1-50 of 63 (63 new)

Robert Thompson Last one was best. Rest are so-so.

message 2: by Jesslyn (new)

Jesslyn I loved them all. And based upon some of the review snippets, added a couple more to my TBR pile (may it never end)

message 3: by Julia (new)

Julia Love the last one!!

message 4: by Lori S. (new)

Lori S. My favorite is Patrick Rothfuss. Too funny. :D

message 5: by Ellie (new)

Ellie All of these are actually so good! 👌

message 6: by Amanda (new)

Amanda They save the best one for last!

message 7: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne As a librarian, I so appreciate the reader's viewpoint as I select future reads. Since retiring, I find Goodreads the Bible when selecting my future reads. I particularly like the new releases which keeps me on top of various titles and authors. Thanks for expanding our reading horizons!

message 8: by Virginia Ronan (new)

Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥ Jeez! 19,010 likes? I can't even imagine that number!!! XD

Olivia "So many books--so little time."" Robert wrote: "Last one was best. Rest are so-so."

I agree. But I'm prejudiced. I love LOL cats.

message 10: by Virginia (new)

Virginia Campbell Member since 5-09==10 years on you sure looks fine!!! Thank you!!!

message 11: by Kristen (new)

Kristen Congratulations and happy birthday, Goodreads!

Love, XOXO,
~member since '08

message 12: by Doris (new)

Doris The last one was the best!

message 13: by Kevin (new)

Kevin Valera Robert wrote: "Last one was best. Rest are so-so."


message 14: by Ania (new)

Ania The first and last were the best!

message 15: by Simant (new)

Simant Verma Oh my god, That last one :D

message 16: by Jasi (new)

Jasi I loved them! :)

message 17: by Tamara (new)


message 18: by Anne (new)

Anne Williams I like Joe's synopsis of Twilight, aka Twiglet, in our house. Saves me having to read it!

message 19: by Raymond (new)

Raymond Brooks Loved it. But for some reason, when I tried to share via Facebook, the Facebook Share window kept shrinking until it was just a double line in the center of the page...........................Well played, Goodreads.
That is how you make people review faster! Thanks for the article, the laughs, and for ideas on how I can improve my own reviewing skills. Keep up the stellar work.

message 20: by Patrick (new)

Patrick O'Hannigan How does Veronica Roth's one-word review place in the top 10 of all time? She wasn't even trying for a review. What she offered, my friends, might have made the author's day, but it was and is a reaction, and nothing more. There's no art or craft to that, and arguably no thought in it, either.

Erin *Proud Book Hoarder* Patrick wrote: "How does Veronica Roth's one-word review place in the top 10 of all time? She wasn't even trying for a review. What she offered, my friends, might have made the author's day, but it was and is a re..."

I know. Popular reviews aren't always the best. There's also the one sentence from Marie Lu about her own book, and the funny picture. They should probably changed the name to something like reviews with the most likes

message 22: by Esteban (new)

Esteban LV My reviews are better.

message 23: by Christine (new)

Christine Why not pants Hitler?


message 24: by Dave (new)

Dave This is awesome! I think the good people at Goodreads should highlight popular reviews of the year, every year.

message 25: by Sergey (last edited Sep 07, 2017 04:25AM) (new)

Sergey Antopolskiy "as-yet-released book Doors of Stone"

you made my heart jump :(

i just can't

message 26: by Marianne (new)

Marianne T. I loved Marie Lu's review,but the last one made my day!!!

message 27: by Brittney (new)

Brittney Andrews (beabookworm) Always save the best for last! Loved it. Also, Patrick Rothfuss' review is FUH-REAKING hilarious.

message 29: by Storm (new)

Storm Arashi Love the time traveling review. But who's to say the time travelers aren't also reading while hunting dinosaurs, getting drunk with Da Vinchi AND pantsing Hitler?

message 30: by Re̶i̶g̶n̶⁷ (new)

Re̶i̶g̶n̶⁷ Reviews feeds the soul. So I'm passionate about having them a way of life. Good riddance. :)

message 31: by MystaryPi (new)

MystaryPi Robert wrote: "Last one was best. Rest are so-so."


message 32: by Lisa (new)

Lisa You missed the amazing review of if you give a mouse a cookie! "If you give a mouse a cookie is the story of the perversity of desire, and more particularly the stunted pleasures of the bourgeoisie. Written by the exquisite Laura Numeroff, in what can only be assumed was a violent passion for sterile aloofness from the society which she condemned, and a lust for concision which would socialize her treatise against the deadening wants, making it accessible to the masses. I can imagine her, unbathed, ignorant of her own hunger and thirst, cutting every insignificant word in a Flaubertian frenzy for le mot juste. ......"

message 33: by Stephan (last edited Sep 08, 2017 01:22PM) (new)

Stephan Happy birthday. 10 years old is not yet mature though in discernment.

Likes and quantity of likes and comments are not indications of good reviews. Come on Goodreads, you can do better than that.

Suggestion: top reviewers often make the best reviews, based on merits, not on clicks. Quality surpasses mediocrity.

message 34: by Iori (new)

Iori Last one was awesome though

TheBohemianBookworm These reviews were disappointingly. I was expecting awesome one liners, funny witticisms. Roth's obviosuly had no meaning. She didn't exhert any effort to write that. Great reviews to me are either stomach hurting hilarious or heart heartbreakingly poignant. These were neither.

message 36: by A.J. (new)

A.J. Adams Virginia wrote: "Jeez! 19,010 likes? I can't even imagine that number!!! XD"

Just what I was thinking!

message 37: by Yaaresse (new)

Yaaresse For every rule there is an exception. For example, an author rating or reviewing their own work is one sure way to make sure I never ever read that book. I don't know who Patrick Rothfuss is, but he is the exception. I must now go find his books and read them.

Still, the last one was the best.

message 38: by Alona (new)

Alona Rothfuss's review is brilliant! But dear oh dear, he wrote it 5 years ago and the book is still not out?? I feel sorry for his readers (and I guess this is why all those 5 stars reviews are now mixed up with a lot of 1 star reviews)
Anyway, I did not know you *can* get 19,000+ likes on a review... unbelievable! Well done reviewers!!

message 39: by Andrea (new)

Andrea So most of them are not even reviews, just something that made others laugh. Oh well.

message 40: by Christopher (new)

Christopher Lawson I think it's pretty tough to write a good book review. Here is my take on the art:

message 41: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Some of these are funny but most of them took little effort. I would like to see the top 10 most witty reviews.

message 42: by Skyler (new)

Skyler I the frist and the last one!

message 43: by Coleen (new)

Coleen Cloete The reviews all have one thing in common. Written straight forward and direct. No fancy academia talk.

message 44: by Murray (new)

Murray Moore I liked the last one.

message 45: by Cal (new)

Cal  (Cal's Reading Corner) Maria wrote: "Me scrolling through this "outright hilarious" list of reviews:

You must be fun at parties :P

Okay all jokes aside-- I totally get how you feel. Especially when somebody over-gifs (which I'm guilty of, but I try not to make it a habit)

message 46: by Cal (new)

Cal  (Cal's Reading Corner) I think the funniest was the cat at the end.

I totally relate to the Outlander review for many hyped books!

The worst review on this list has to be Roth's "Fantastic."

message 47: by Bookishnymph *needs hea* (last edited Sep 12, 2017 03:17PM) (new)

Bookishnymph *needs hea* I hate it when people use too many gifs in a review. It's like that person that keeps telling the same joke over an over because someone laughed at it once, and you're like "Ok, I get it".

message 48: by Jannene (new)

Jannene Robert wrote: "Last one was best. Rest are so-so."


message 49: by Daisy (new)

Daisy Paquet fabulous.

message 50: by Janice (new)

Janice Love that cat.

« previous 1
back to top