Book Reviews | should an author give a bad review?

I post book reviews on Amazon, GoodReads, and Shelfari when a book has entertained me, or provoked me. I do this because I think it helps readers find their next fabulous book. I tend not to do any reviews where I can’t score it with 3 stars or higher. I’ve been wondering if that’s fair to the reader. I’ve build a library of reviews on Amazon, and people have found the information useful, would they find it useful to know when to avoid a book?

I’m going to start posting the occasional book reviews here, and that made me think about my policy. Would I accept books for review? It’s not like my site gets a ton of traffic, but a review is a review. After some thought I decided that I would accept books, but I wouldn’t change my policy. If I can’t say something nice, I’m not going to review a book. book reviews, five star reviews, one star reviews, rating a book

Book Reviews as I see it

A book review in my mind is about helping the reader. It’s not about writing a thesis, or synopsis, or giving any spoilers. If someone hasn’t read a book, I don’t think it’s fair to tell them what happens – even if the book is 20 year old.

Since I’m focusing on the reader, I think it will help if I break the review down into these three sections.

Facts:

  • Title – clearly important, and it will have a link to the Amazon store for purchase. I will attach my affiliate code – if I ever figure it out – so I’ll get a couple of cents if someone buys.
  • Author: I will look to see if the author writes in other genres and provide that bit of information. If I can, I’ll provide the bio.
  • Genre: this may be tricky but I’ll do my best. It’s more likely to look like a list of tags rather than straight genre.

Opinion:

This is what I think of the book as entertainment. Are the characters engaging, the stakes high, is it a good representation of the genre?

Rank:

I know everyone hates this, but for book reviews this is a great short hand. I’ll rank out of 5 but the lowest I’ll use is 3.

What’s coming?

Next two posts will have book reviews. I’m going to try posting 3 book reviews each post.

If you want me to review your book, send me an email at pawilson@pawilson.ca and we can make the connection.