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Book Reviews, why should we…
I find myself as an active book blogger wondering what do all the other people think. “I bought the book, why review it?” Are there any feelings of obligation to review, do they think “Oh that was awesome I should review it somewhere?”
I know before I started blogging I left quite a few reviews but wondered did they help anyone. So let me help you decide when and how to leave a review.
What is a book review?
A book review is a form of literary criticism in which a book is analyzed based on content, style, and merit, in other words did you like what it’s about, did you like or dislike the style or was it even written in a way that was understandable? A review is an extended version of the back of the book. It usually has a brief summary of the book, an opinion, and a recommendation. With all this it becomes the coveted book review.
What does the review do?
The review helps potential readers:
- Become familiar with what the book is about.
- How much other readers enjoyed the book.
- The “algorithm” will make suggestions like “If you liked that, you might like this”.
- It gives worthiness to the book in potential readers eyes.
- Amazon Kindle readers rely heavily on book reviews before making an online order of the book.
The review helps the author:
- It creates a discussion about the book early in its release.
- A review helps the book show up more often on some websites and web searches.
- It helps the author be seen, especially if they’re new.
- The critique can give the author insight to improve their writing.
- More reviews get authors to be added to other book review sites, blogging communities, and book clubs.
- In the end, more reviews equal more sales.
Where to put your review:
- If you’re an avid reader or even a casual reader you’ve seen and probably read a review or two or gotten an email to review a purchase.
- Amazon is the big one, leaving reviews changes Amazon’s algorithm and increases sales.
- Goodreads is an active book community that has reviews for tens of thousands of books.
- BookBub is another that makes it easy to leave a review.
- Many others like these exist, but these are the popular that I use almost daily.
What you shouldn’t do in a review:
- Leave a review just because you were compensated for it, yes many authors buy them, and it shows in the review.
- Leave a negative review just because you didn’t like the book as a matter of taste. If you just don’t like it, mark it as “Did Not Finish” and explain it. A negative review is important if there are blatant story line mistakes.
- Don’t be a troll.
I’ll share a little bit of how I give star ratings, but everyone is different. How I give star ratings:
Is a book I would read multiple times, something that made me feel like I was there with the characters, has a unique plot/characters and something that made me feel emotions I wasn’t feeling before reading it. It would be a book I would highly recommend and that I had a hard time putting down or lost sleep over. The author becomes an automatic buy for me.
is a book I might possibly read again maybe even buy. If it was good and enjoyable and I liked the plot and characters it would get 4 stars. If it meshed well and it kept my attention throughout the story. I would more than likely recommend it.
I wouldn’t read / buy again. Characters or mistakes or both and if the characters were great but the plot wasn’t or the the plot is great, but the characters weren’t I would give it 3 stars. Some books get a 3 if I liked the story, but the writing style wasn’t great, or the writing was good, but the story was just meh, but with something slightly off. Maybe shoddy editing, a shallow character, an error which could have been easily checked on Google…
I never go below 3 stars. I just won’t leave a review.
I love writing reviews and I hope the authors love them just as much. I hope this helps you understand the importance of leaving a review. Reviews help everyone in the long run, so go leave a review, many people will appreciate it.