The Bookbyte Blog
Gender & Books: Who Are You Reading?
in College Life
Goodreads recently asked the question: What do men and women read when it comes to books?
What is Goodreads, you ask? Goodreads.com is a website for users to track, rate, and review the books they read. Users can participate in book club discussions, follow their friends, create "To-Read" book lists, and read reviews from other users. Goodreads took the top stats of 40,000 of their most active readers to see what the sexes are reading. Here's their collected information in a cool infographic:
It's interesting to note that the top 5 books read by men and written by women are all Young Adult novels, which I think just goes to show that YA's strong characters, compelling storylines, and universal themes are attractive to readers of every age and gender.
The Goodreads study found that, for the most part, men read men authors and women read women authors. Most of the comments had the same reaction to this as I did: "That's not on purpose." When I'm in a bookstore, I usually choose books based on reading the blurb on the back cover, skimming a few pages inside, and on whether I like the cover art or not (yes, I sometimes judge a book by its cover). I think checking the author name is one of the last steps I take.
Perhaps the stats speaks to the fact that men and women face different challenges and want a book they can relate to. It could also be true that men/women tend to write the genres that interest their own gender (i.e. women predominately read romance, romance is predominately written by women). It would be nice to see this study done on a larger scale, but for now, it raises some interesting questions about our reading habits.
Do you think this study is an accurate portrayal of your own reading habits? Do you tend to read more books written by men or women? Let us know!