the Little Red Reviewer

do you pay attention to Book Trailers?

Posted on: December 5, 2010

not only do I live under a rock, but even worse, I’m old fashioned.

I’ve been seeing the random embedded book trailer in blogs for maybe a year now, and at first i couldn’t understand why a book, which  in and of itself is not a moving picture, would need or want a moving picture advertisement.  

As a fellow book consumer, do you pay attention to a book trailer?  if you see a book trailer of a title are you more likely to purchase it over a book that didn’t have a trailer? are book trailers the new back-of-the-book blurb?    in 5 years will the windows of barnes and noble be covered in screens showing trailers, as opposed to the posters and other non-moving-picture adverts they have now?  even better, will future hardcovers have the trailer embedded into the cover so you can watch the trailer while deciding to purchase the book? 

I still live under a rock, I’m still old fashioned, and I just don’t get book trailers.


15 Responses to "do you pay attention to Book Trailers?"

Ah! Finally someone else to agree with! I don’t honestly see the appeal in book trailers, either. Sure, some of them are catchy and pretty, but they’ve never affected my decision in wanting or not wanting to read whichever book.

I prefer to be won over by the words, by the descriptions and summaries of novels. Not pictures.


I do like book trailers. I can’t say they have influenced a book purchase yet but they are making me aware of books I might not have noticed otherwise. I recently learned that making book trailers is a popular activity for youth librarians to do with teens. I know a girl who did an internship as a youth services librarian and she helped teens make book trailers and said everyone had a blast doing them.


I never thought about librarians and teens making book trailers as a library project, that’s actually really cool!


I agree. I don’t pay any attention to book trailers. In fact they don’t make sense to me.


I would rather read about a book than watch a sensationalized trailer about it, one which is deliberately misleading, or which makes it feel more like an action movie than a novel.

I think book trailers have their place, and there are some I have actually enjoyed (Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter for example) but it is strange, and I’m not sure I approve of them becoming increasingly mainstream.


Add me to the list of luddites. I choose my books by seeing them in the shop and browsing through a few pages, or I read recommendations at places like this. I only recently found out book trailers existed and my first question was: Why?


I watch the odd one here and there, but I mostly ignore them. I’m more interested in other readers’ reactions.


It’s a nightmare for authors who don’t necessarily have video experience or equipment to put ’em together, often on their own, with lots of encouragement from their publishers, but no budget. With the Zoo City trailer, I was lucky to have a friend who is super au-fait with editing, a brilliant cover by Joey Hi-Fi with lots of detail to play with and photos I’d snapped of Hillbrow on my cell phone camera and music from the official soundtrack. But it’s not so much a trailer as a mood-reel. Does it add anything to the book? Would it make you buy it? I don’t know…


Don’t worry about Barnes & Noble being overrun–book trailers are intended to appeal to audiences who don’t normally read books; the sorts of people who don’t spend all of their free time in book shops! They’re shown on TV, available on YouTube–I tend to see the most book trailers in the YA market.

A good book trailer is delightful, but often elusive–the ones for the Quirk Classics are fun. But they don’t make a difference to me, a hardcore reader–but perhaps they might convince a teenage girl who doesn’t read much to check out a book.


I don’t watch the trailers I see for books. I suspect it’s mostly ’cause the first few I saw were horribly corny, and they just turned me off of a book I was otherwise interested in.

So now I read reviews on sites like Goodreads and other book blogs, or just go by the blurb on the back of the book. I actively avoid trailers.

…I’ve wondered if I’m just out of the target demographic for the trailers, being a 30-something. But, who knows. Maybe not.


I don’t pay attention to them. It’s not that I don’t get them, I understand what they are trying to do, but for me, I don’t find them relevant.

If I want to know about the book I read reviews and the publishers summary. However, I’m definitely not the target market. Will it work? maybe. Video was able to sell music so maybe it can sell books.


Some of the trailers are fun to watch but they don’t really sway me in any way in regards to the book itself. Most of them aren’t even particularly informative.


[…] Just because I’m a luddite, doesn’t mean you are. Check out the book trailer that Beukes was kind enough to link to on my book trailer tirade. […]


… There are book trailers?

(Okay, I know intellectually they exist, but leaving aside fan projects such as a Guards! Guards! trailer I saw a while back, I don’t think I’ve ever seen one for an author that I follow.)


Here’s an article that came out today in American Libraries about book trailers. It just so happens that my professor wrote it. I had no idea she was thinking about this same issue.


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some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.
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