Okay, gulp… time to do this discussion thing again! My safe but inspiring topic is still on the back burner (but its peculating back there…) I’m actually more nervous than excited but I have been thinking about this topic for about a week now and really want to hear what all the smart and opinionated bloggers in the book community think… so please weigh in!!
I’ve read for the past several months different book bloggers thoughts on the merits of posting reviews. Are you still a book blogger if you don’t have review posts? By necessity reviews must be spoiler free and worse, they don’t get the hits that other posts receive…
I’ve read where other book bloggers have made the leap, choosing NOT to write reviews for EVERY book they read but picking and choosing when a review will suit them or not. This is all due to the time they need to invest in the review writing…
I’m NOT saying any of these perspectives are wrong or right… If you don’t WANT to write reviews then great, don’t. It you do want to WRITE reviews then great, do!
(Some of us are FORCED to write reviews because we receive ARCS… #kiddingNOTkidding)
We may not all review, but we ALL rate books…
Example #1 – Not to My Taste… WHAT DO I RATE IT?!
(This book inspired this discussion post…)
Recently I finished an ARC that I had been looking forward to and had finally received. I struggled through the whole book by turns LOVING the story and the characters and HATING other specific aspects of the characters and the story. I’ve been really TORN!
This book is one of my favorite genres… post apocalyptic. It includes mental health issues and abuse one of my other favorite genres. It’s decently written and thought out. I was engaged with the MC and the family she meets. I WANTED, NO NEEDED to see HOW THEY END UP!!
The first drug scene I ran across I thought, okay… she’s trying to add some realism. The next scene seemed unrealistic to me as they had SO MUCH DRUGS.
The one after that just made me sick… THIS IS A ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE, THEY COULD STUMBLE HERE AT ANY TIME AND KILL YOU AND THOSE YOU LOVE!! AND YOU ARE LAYING ON THE GROUND TRIPPING OUT!
I know this sounds like these scenes came one on top of another but they were spread out just enough that I’d almost forget them then BAM, there it was again.
I’m not here to ARGUE about the PROS AND CONS of drugs… they aren’t to my taste (especially how they are depicted here) and I’m NOT going to apologize for disliking them.
What do I rate the book? Should my taste issues influence the rating?
Example #2 – Not to My Taste… 4 Stars!
(This book inspired my conflicted feelings on this matter…)
Eight days ago I settled down to read a dragon book (I LOVE AND ADORE DRAGONS!!! Sorry, deep breathes… no fangirling right now!) and couldn’t finish reading it. I felt conflicted doing this but it was a load off my shoulders to dnf it!!
(Thank you to all those bloggers who have talked about how they can’t finish a book they are not into!) Personally I can finish a book I HATE *shrug* I love to dissect books like this… but being indifferent and feeling the drag of my disinterest WAS TOO MUCH! I don’t, no I CAN’T regret this…
Then I proceeded to write a review about the aspects of the book I did enjoy and did like, merrily ignoring MOST of what I couldn’t stand. The publicist joyfully asked me to post this review on Amazon. This is a regular practice for 4 Star reviews…
I knew other readers would get a kick out of this book… Comedy fantasy not being my thing…
But was 4 Stars TOO much when I didn’t ENJOY the book?
So what I’m saying is…
I don’t have any easy answers. Rating books is a personal and individual thought process we share with ALL. Giving example #1 4 stars is not going to happen, no matter HOW MUCH I loved the book. I was able to rave about example #2 which wasn’t to my taste and I’m HAPPY with the 4 stars. #ConflictedMuch
I do know if I didn’t NEED to write these reviews I wouldn’t have learned that my tastes matter. That my specific tastes make me a book blogger!
Yes, I am also a writer book blogger who shares my perspective about the storycraft and writing techniques in the books I read. I’m also ALLOWED to be a reader who loves some things and really, seriously dislikes other things…
As both, writing reviews is IMPORTANT to me!! They help me clarify who I am and refine what I find important. If my taste choices influence another reader to read for them self then that makes me happy. The #1 and #2 advice for writers is to write everyday and read everyday. Another author’s book offers that opportunity.
(Note: I do not expect writing reviews to be important to you too! I love that people are diverse and that we can accept everyone’s choices…)
What is your opinion on writing reviews? Rating books?
Is it the page views that matter? Or clarifying your FEELS? Do you think there should be consistency in the numbered rating? Is it about the story craft for you or if the book covers ideas/situations to your taste?
Please share your thought about reviews!!