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Old 07-10-2012, 12:51 PM   #1
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Useless Statistics

The point of this thread is useless statistics. Well, and to maybe find some new books and authors to read.

I was looking through my list of books read this year on GoodReads and just love all the statistics available. So show me what you've read this year and how popular/unpopular it is. I'll go first as an example:

Popular - most ratings:
Twain, Mark - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (565,982)
Huxley, Aldous - Brave New World (395,044)
Zusak, Markus - The Book Thief (199,383)
Palahniuk, Chuck - Fight Club (105,128)
Gaiman, Neil - Neverwhere (79,935)

Unpopular - fewest ratings:
Tredinnick, Luke - Why Intranets Fail (And How to Fix Them) (1)
Resmini, Andrea - Pervasive Information Architecture (6)
Elkin, Stanley - Van Gogh's Room at Arles (43)
Galloway, Steven - Ascension (70)
Bidini, Dave - Tropic of Hockey (80)

Best book - highest average rating:
Resmini, Andrea - Pervasive Information Architecture (4.50) (5)
Zusak, Markus - The Book Thief (4.33) (4)
Pratchett, Terry - I Shall Wear Midnight (4.30) (4)
Pratchett, Terry - A Hat Full of Sky (4.23) (4)
Neufeld, Gordon - Hold on to Your Kids (4.20) (4)

Worst book - lowest average rating:
Taylor, Arlene G. - The Organization of Information (2.73) (2)
Tredinnick, Luke - Why Intranets Fail (And How to Fix Them) (3.00) (3)
Wells, H.G. - In the Days of the Comet (3.24) (?)
Elkin, Stanley - Van Gogh's Room at Arles (3.33) (3)
Yu, Charles - How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe (3.34) (5)

I put my ratings in the second set of brackets for comparison purposes.
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Old 07-10-2012, 05:00 PM   #2
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It took me a bit to figure out how to show some of the categories you used, but here they are:

Popular - Most Ratings: Here are the top 10
  • The Wheel of Time books 1-4 by Robert Jordan (at 38k to 68k ratings)
  • The Bourne Supremacy by Robert Ludlum at 35k ratings
  • A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle at 32k ratings
  • The Wheel of Time books 0 and 5-7 by Robert Jordan at 15k to 30k ratings
Least Popular - Fewest Ratings:
  • An Apple a Day Keeps the Dragon Away (Break Bites) - Sistla, Amber D. - 3.00 - 2 ratings
  • Phineas - Gellene, Joseph - 3.00 - 2 ratings
  • Going Somewhere Else - Sistla, Amber D. - 2.67 - 3 ratings
  • Street Music - A Phineas Troutt Short Mystery Story - Kilborn, Jack - 3.54 - 13 ratings
  • The Senex - Ambrose, Jeff - 3.13 - 15 ratings
Best Book highest average rating: I enjoyed all of these a lot too.
  • Wool - Hugh Howey - 4.51 (5, I actually read them separately, but they would be numbers 1, 2, 3, 6, and 7 if I didn't combine them)
  • Transfer of Power - Vince Flynn - 4.23 (4, number 4 on my list)
  • The Dark Elf Trilogy - R.A. Salvatore - 4.28 (5, I read these separately, but like Wool these would fill up the rest of the list if I didn't combine them, numbers 5, 8 and 9 when separated)
  • The Wheel of Time - Robert Jordan - 4.14 (4/5, books 1-4 of this series are numbers 10-13 of my overall, so again they were combined)
Worst book - lowest average rating:
  • See above, the exact same books as the "Least Popular", ratings shown below.
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Old 07-10-2012, 07:17 PM   #3
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>>Resmini, Andrea - Pervasive Information Architecture<<

My real job! Do you do IA? Do you do multi-channel stuff? How did you like this book?

Sorry for the hijack!

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Old 07-10-2012, 07:47 PM   #4
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Ooh, good idea!

Most Ratings
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1) - Larsson, Stieg (438,564)
The Girl Who Played With Fire (Millennium #2) - Larsson, Stieg (209,287)
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest (Millennium, #3) - Larsson, Stieg (164,934)
Small Favor (The Dresden Files, #10) - Butcher, Jim (19,845)
Turn Coat (The Dresden Files, #11) - Butcher, Jim (17,170)

Least Ratings
Ten Past Midnight - Toombs, Jane (2)
At The Millionaire's Request (Silhouette Special Edition #1769) - Southwick, Teresa (6)
The Farmer Takes a Wife - Gale, Barbara (7)
The Mission - Marquis, Michelle (7)
Abby's Last Stand - Marquis, Michelle (7)

Highest Average Rating
Wool Omnibus Edition (Wool, #1-5) - Howey, Hugh (4.51) (5)
Turn Coat (The Dresden Files, #11) - Butcher, Jim (4.41) (5)
Small Favor (The Dresden Files, #10) - Butcher, Jim (4.40) (4)
Ice Age - Rowan, Iain (4.29) (4)
I Held My Breath as Long as I Could - Kelly, Kristopher (4.19) (4)

Lowest Average Rating
The Farmer Takes a Wife - Gale, Barbara (2.71) (3)
Mastering Chaos - Marquis, Michelle (2.82) (3)
At The Millionaire's Request (Silhouette Special Edition #1769) - Southwick, Teresa (2.83) (4)
Ten Past Midnight - Toombs, Jane (3.00) (3)
Abby's Last Stand - Marquis, Michelle (3.00) (4)
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:22 AM   #5
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Well you know what the first author on that list said, right?

"lies, damn lies, and statistics"
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:42 AM   #6
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Why not!

Popular - most ratings:
Bradbury, Ray - Fahrenheit 451 (374,950)
Wells, H.G. - The Time Machine (66,028)
Ishiguro, Kazuo - The Remains of the Day (34,395)
Fitzgerald, F. Scott - Tender is the Night (27,764)
Hearn, Lian - Across the Nightingale Floor (Tales of the Otori, #1) (9,982)

Unpopular - fewest ratings:
Black, John - Work Of Art (1)
Carroll, Lewis - Cthulhu in Wonderland (5)
Evans, L.C. - Night Camp (11)
Mardoll, Ana - Pulchritude (14)
Arnold, Joel - Northwoods Deep (16)

Best book - highest average rating:
Howey, Hugh - Wool Omnibus Edition (Wool, #1-5) (4.51) (5)
Evans, L.C. - Night Camp (4.27) (4)
Logan, John A.A. - The Survival of Thomas Ford (4.17) (4)
Jordan, Steven Lyle - Verdant Skies (4.12) (4)
Pierce, Meredith Ann - A Gathering of Gargoyles (Darkangel Trilogy, #2) (4.08) (4)

Worst book - lowest average rating:
Black, John - Work Of Art (3.00) (3)
Pepper, Adam - Symphony of Blood: A Hank Mondale Supernatural Case (3.12) (3)
Chabon, Michael - The Final Solution (3.26) (4)
Guin, Ursula K. Le - Rocannon's World (3.55) (3)
Miéville, China - Kraken (3.55) (4)
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Old 07-11-2012, 10:00 AM   #7
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I guess you guys above have not read Harry Potter or Twilight! Those are my most popular, with over 1 million ratings apiece.

As for the ratings, I find the "outliers" very interesting: where I have rated a book very high and the average rating is very low, or vice versa. My outliers:

Divergent by Veronica Roth: 2 stars by me, 4.39 avg
Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing: 4 stars by me, 3.12 avg. I loved that book and I don't even like chick lit very much. I see a lot of people were really annoyed by it.

None of the books my list have less than 3 stars average. Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing was the lowest rated on my list (sad!). The next two lowest with 3.13--The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender and The Vintage Caper by Peter Mayle--I also really hated.

My least-rated book is Echoes from the Macabre by Daphne DuMaurier which I believe is out of print.

eP
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Old 07-11-2012, 10:35 AM   #8
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^I was just checking the books I read this year so far.

Totally agreed on the outliers being the most interesting.

Apparently Charles Yu's How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe is a pretty poor book, rated at 3.34 when I gave it a 5. I thought it was clever, entertaining and a bit goofy. Everything I love in a book like that.

I'll have to check for other outliers. I know I've got some doozies there somewhere.
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Old 07-11-2012, 02:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kennyc View Post
Well you know what the first author on that list said, right?

"lies, damn lies, and statistics"
An equally useless fact: although Mark Twain popularised the phrase, he didn't claim to have invented it. As Wiki says:

Quote:
Mark Twain popularized the saying in "Chapters from My Autobiography", published in the North American Review in 1906. "Figures often beguile me," he wrote, "particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: 'There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.'"
"Disraeli" of course refers to the British Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli. Although, interestingly, the phrase hasn't been found in anything that Disraeli wrote.
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Old 07-11-2012, 06:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
"Disraeli" of course refers to the British Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli. Although, interestingly, the phrase hasn't been found in anything that Disraeli wrote.
There's a great page on it here. It seems to have originated in the 1880s or very early 1890s, but no-one has found a definite source.
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Old 07-31-2012, 05:19 PM   #11
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I am kinda bummed this thread didn't make it very far, so I am going to bump it.

I have only been keeping decent records of my reading for 2011 and 2012 (since I got my Kindle), so it would be much more work for me to get this information for all the books I have read.

To add some content, I re-read the Hitchhikers "trilogy" (375k ratings to <30k ratings) last year and read the Hunger Games trilogy (900k ratings to 500k ratings), which have the most ratings of the books I have read since starting to keep track.
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Old 07-31-2012, 05:30 PM   #12
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Old 07-31-2012, 05:47 PM   #13
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In my list at Goodreads, the best rated book there is...

Star Trek: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack (4.56)

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1...torming-heaven
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