If you’re an avid reader, chances are, you’ve heard of Wattpad. Wattpad is a website/app that lets you read books for free. The books are usually written by amateur writers and updated periodically. Over 55 million people around the globe read Wattpad books, so there’s definitely a fanbase there. But lately, Wattpad has accrued a reputation for having bad or even cringe books aimed at teenagers that are simply not worth reading.
Pros 👍 and Cons 👎 of Wattpad Books!
So what’s the truth? To be honest with you, it depends on what kinds of books you enjoy reading. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to personal preferences. If you’re trying to figure out whether or not to give Wattpad a try, this list of pros and cons is here to help you decide! Read on to find out if Wattpad books are indeed worth reading for you.
Pro Number 1: Free Books!
This is the biggest advantage of Wattpad. No matter how many books you read, there are still more for you to check out. If you’re someone who reads books faster than you can buy them, or there aren’t any good libraries near you, Wattpad is a great place to check out new genres. From romance, to action, to fantasy, Wattpad has it all. If you’re a lover of fanfiction, Wattpad is one of the most renowned places for it. No matter what fandom you’re in, there is no shortage of quality fanfiction. But if you’re averse to sexually explicit content in the books you read, be careful to check the tags and see if the author has included or plans on including NSFW content in their book.
Con Number 1: Not the Best Quality of Books
While free books sound great, it’s important to remember that it comes at their own cost. Wattpad is a place where any budding writer can post their work. But this means that not all books may be up to par with published books. Wattpad books are written by novice or amateur writers as I mentioned, so they often use cliched plotlines and very common troupes.
This makes it hard to find truly original books that may deliver the same reading experience as a published novel. Sometimes badly written books with poor grammar and bad storytelling become very popular and are featured on the ‘HOT’ lists. If you’re an older reader with lots of experience with books, Wattpad is probably not the best place for you since it attracts a much younger audience.
Pro Number 2: Featured Lists to Help You Choose
While there are many not-so-great books on Wattpad, there are some really good ones too. So how does one go about choosing which books to read? Easy! The app has featured lists of the top books in every genre to help you choose which ones to read next. The featured lists run into the hundreds, so you will never get to the end of the list.
There’s a separate featured list for every genre, so you can find the right books for you according to your preferences. The ratings and reviews every book has received are also visible, so you can base your choices on what fellow bibliophiles have to say. The tags the writer has posted also let you know what to expect from the book so you can make an informed decision before reading something.
Con Number 2: Not all Genres are well Represented
It’s no secret that Wattpad’s top genre is romance. The app’s primary audience is teenage to young adult girls, and teen fiction is very popular on the platform. Naturally, things that the app’s target audiences may not be interested in may not be prominently featured on the app. Genres like action or science fiction are not as popular on Wattpad and may be harder to find.
You may find it harder to discover books you enjoy if you’re an older reader. Much of the romance on Wattpad is aimed towards teenagers or people in their twenties, so if you’re a lover of things like historical romance, those may be harder to find on the platform. In that case, you’d be better off digging up a forgotten novel you already own and giving it another read.
Pro Number 3: Leave Feedback and Suggestions for the Author
A great feature that Wattpad has is you get to directly interact with the author of the book you’re reading. You can leave comments at the end of a chapter or even leave comments by highlighting particular lines. Sometimes the authors respond to comments on their chapters, so if you love interacting with authors, Wattpad is a great place to be. Wattpad also has a feature that lets you send messages to other users like the authors. If you read a book that really touched you and want to thank the author for their work, use this feature! It functions like DMs and can be a great way to get in touch with authors who inspire you.
Con Number 3: Wattpad Premium
Since its launch in 2006, Wattpad has definitely made a name for itself. But Wattpad’s current success means that dedicated readers on the platform are willing to pay extra. Wattpad Premium is available in two plans – Wattpad premium which costs $4.99 a month, and Wattpad Premium +, which costs $7.49 a month. Wattpad is riddled with ads, which can’t be closed for a while unless you buy Wattpad Premium.
Wattpad also limits the number of books you can download for offline use, which forces you to stay online while reading most of the books (and therefore watching more ads). Wattpad also has a feature called ‘coins’ that can be used to gain early access to new chapters from popular books. If you’re not a Premium user, coins can be very hard to earn, meaning you’d have to wait for a considerable amount of time before you can continue reading your favorite book.
I hope this exploration into the pros and cons of Wattpad helped you decide if Wattpad is right for you! Like all social media sites, Wattpad can contain content that is unsuitable for young children, so please exercise caution when you use the platform. Happy reading!
A final year law student from Chennai with an interest in policy, debate, and dogs.