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Monday, April 21, 2014

R – Reading and Reviews

Monday’s about Me

I read – a lot. There are a lot of my childhood pictures that depict me reading curled up in a chair or laying across the couch with my feet hanging over the arm, or sprawled on my stomach on the floor. I have always loved reading and always won the awards for reading the most in my classes at school. In fact, I loved reading so much that I often neglected to get other work done because I had to finish a book.
Don’t worry, I still got great grades in school and graduated with honors.

Then college came and I’m not sure I enjoyed reading as much because instead of being allowed to choose what I read, they would assign me these ridiculous books that I had no interest in reading. Not like classics (I love those) but more like obscure, weird books that left a bitter taste in my mouth or made me wonder what in the world the professor was hoping I would get from the book …. Other than “this is a lame book – why do you want me to read it?”

But I managed to get past that too, and still graduated with an awesome GPA.

So now we come to today where I enjoy reading but have very little time to do so. And then comes my dilemma:

I am always happy to read and review books. I love it. I love to critique and give feedback before the book is out, and I love to do reviews after books are published. I really enjoy it.

The problem comes when people begin to ask if I will review their book and I keep saying “Yes” (Because as we read in Letter F blog, I have a hard time saying no). Then I realize that I suddenly have a list of 20+ books that I have promised to review for people and no time to read them.

Then, because I feel bad I haven’t gotten to those books, I decide I should write reviews for books I have read so at least I’m helping out the authors I have enjoyed reading up until now. However, this then poses the problem of adding to my list of books to write reviews for rather than eliminating the guilt of not getting to the ones I’ve promised.

Yup, It’s a problem!

But never fear, I will get to them all …. Eventually, because I think every author has the right to have good reviews if I loved their book.

Now comes the issue …. What if I don’t like the book? Do I leave a negative review or not leave a review at all because they are a friend and they asked me to review their book with the high hopes of getting another good review (which I cannot provide). Now what do I do?

Help me out here - What do you do in this situation?


  1. I have the same issues. I'm sure many of us do. And what about the book that is good, but editing ,mistakes...spelling, grammar, etc? I have several books that I read, but cannot review, for all those reasons. They are mostly ones that I "won" on Goodreads. Sorry, no good answers. As an unpublished (as yet) writer, I am officially saying that I want reviewers to private message or email me with problems they find in my writing. To be honest, these issues make me hesitate to publish. No one is perfect, but I think books need to be as close to perfect as they can be before they are seen in public. In a perfect world, I've always thought that indie authors should have their books go through an indie author board before publishing. It would raise the quality by leaps and bounds. I will write a post and make sure you see it. Thanks for bringing this up.

    1. Posted a link to this post of yours, Rebecca, today:

  2. I have read a lot of books recently and sometimes I do not love the book. I haven't had any that I dislike or hated. There may be an aspect I hate that sort of ruins the book vibe, but I've learned to differentiate that from 'this book is terrible'. So If I personally don't love the book enough to rant and rave about it to others, I judge it as if I was a teacher. The teacher may not LOVE your paper, but did you hit all of the points of the rubric to receive a good grade? Was your spelling and grammar on point? Did you have plot holes and bad research? Did you have unbelievable character actions going on? I try not to rate a book judging on if I personally just didn't like the story premise or the idea. I do reserve 5 stars for books I personally love though. But if I only liked it, 3 or 4 stars seems fair. Even for friends.


Thank you for your comments!