Monday, April 18, 2011

On Reviewing Books

I do a lot of book reviews on my blog and you will never see an objective review from me. I am a person with feelings which are subjective, not objective. I try to be fair, and I will always say what I like about the books I read, but if there is something I don't like, I will mention that as well. I don't do this to be mean. I believe the only way to improve is to get feedback. One difficult aspect of being a writer is hearing feedback from others, especially if it's negative feedback. But, that's how we get better, right?

I give the kind of reviews I would want to get for my own work. I would want to know what bothers people about what I wrote and what they liked. I know among some groups of authors there's the feeling of "I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine." The reviewer will then err on the side of kind generosity and say only those things that are positive about the book. Kind of like Thumper's mother's mantra: "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all." That's all well and good, but it leaves the reader of the review with a distorted view of the book, and when I read a review I really want to know what I'm getting into when I crack the cover; the good, the bad, and the ugly.

So, I apologize to the authors of books I have reviewed and those I will review if I offend you. My intent is not to offend but to give an honest report of my opinion about your work. Please remember I am only one person and everyone who reads your book will have a different opinion. That's why honest reviews are not objective.

1 comment:

  1. I agree wholeheartedly, if you can't give an honest review, what is that review to me as a reader. That's how I try to review.