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Book Reviews - would you ...

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  #1  
Old 01-03-2014, 07:54 AM
Redlorry
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read and review a book that was completely outside a genre you enjoyed?

I read a lot of books, and for the most part I review them all in good detail for Amazon and Goodreads. And as a writer I always look for the good in a book when I review it, even if I didn't like it as much as I hoped.

I only review books I read (obviously) and I only read books I think I will enjoy either because they are in a genre I love, or because the cover, blurb or other reviews tempted me.

I wouldn't, for instance read a book about modern war, because I don't enjoy that genre, nor do I feel there is anything about it that I could enjoy.

And I could not, in good conscience, promise or offer to review a book in a genre I don't enjoy. It would be very hard for me to write a non-subjective review. That's not to say it can't be done, but it would be very hard.

And yet every day I see this happening on Amazon and Goodreads; writers getting lower ratings because someone has chosen to review their book when it's clear they wouldn't like from the start. With more and more writers taking the Indie route to publishing this can have serious consequences.

As a professional reader for a UK publishing house, the publishers only send me titles from the genres I enjoy; they too understand that there's no point asking someone to review something they might not like.

So my question is, do you think it's fair to review a book you knew you wouldn't enjoy before you even started reading it?

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Old 01-03-2014, 10:53 AM
LillianTroll (Offline)
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If I was sure I wouldn't enjoy the book, I would not review it, because I wouldn't read it.
How do you become a professional reviewer? Sounds interesting.
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Old 01-03-2014, 10:57 AM
Redlorry
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I was approached by the publishing house after they read my review on Amazon.

Reading a book you won't enjoy in order to review it, must be a bit like a single, career woman test driving a family saloon car, when what she's in the market for is something smaller and faster.
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Old 01-04-2014, 11:49 AM
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a book you knew you wouldn't enjoy before you even started reading it?
Not sure one of those even exists if I'm totally honest, I find nearly every genre interesting as long as it is written well. For example, I'm not usually a huge fan of a biography, but then I read Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, which is (for the most part) biographical, if slightly exaggerated, and that turned out to be the best book that I've read in years. I could say the same about Long Walk To Freedom by Nelson Mandela, or Wild Swans by Jung Chang. So there are always exceptions to the rule.

However, I do not think it would be fair for me to review a book which I had been given the chance to start reading. What I mean by this is that, personally, I can usually tell if I'm going to like a book within the first chapter or so, if it doesn't interest me after 30 pages or so then I don't tend to bother reading any further. So if I was told to review up a book that I'd begun reading and wasn't captured by then I think that would be unfair, because I think in part my mind can get stuck on the first few chapters of the book even when I might decide to read the whole thing. So I think my review would often be stuck on that first impression.

In short, first impressions are a big deal to me, genres aren't.
Not sure if that really answers your question, hope it kinda contributes some though
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Old 09-22-2014, 02:44 PM
Medini Summers (Offline)
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Very true. Do you enjoy the exercise? As a writer and promoter of my own books I can truely say that I treasure someone with your outlook.
Would you like to review on historical fiction? I am always looking for reviewers.
my link - http://www.amazon.com/Sunworshipper-...dp/B00HRF4SN6/.
That you look for the best in a book is great, because adverse reviews can effect us very badly. At the same time you must be honest. You would find my books very readable. All the best from Medini Summers.





Originally Posted by Redlorry View Post
read and review a book that was completely outside a genre you enjoyed?

I read a lot of books, and for the most part I review them all in good detail for Amazon and Goodreads. And as a writer I always look for the good in a book when I review it, even if I didn't like it as much as I hoped.

I only review books I read (obviously) and I only read books I think I will enjoy either because they are in a genre I love, or because the cover, blurb or other reviews tempted me.

I wouldn't, for instance read a book about modern war, because I don't enjoy that genre, nor do I feel there is anything about it that I could enjoy.

And I could not, in good conscience, promise or offer to review a book in a genre I don't enjoy. It would be very hard for me to write a non-subjective review. That's not to say it can't be done, but it would be very hard.

And yet every day I see this happening on Amazon and Goodreads; writers getting lower ratings because someone has chosen to review their book when it's clear they wouldn't like from the start. With more and more writers taking the Indie route to publishing this can have serious consequences.

As a professional reader for a UK publishing house, the publishers only send me titles from the genres I enjoy; they too understand that there's no point asking someone to review something they might not like.

So my question is, do you think it's fair to review a book you knew you wouldn't enjoy before you even started reading it?
I would say that you just start. Chose a book and away you go. I would be really happy if you would like to review my books on Amazon Kindle. If you do it well then Amazon my take you up. It is historical fiction. Here is my link -

http://www.amazon.com/Sunworshipper-...dp/B00HRF4SN6/.
Best wishes and good luck to you. From Medini Summers.




Originally Posted by LillianTroll View Post
If I was sure I wouldn't enjoy the book, I would not review it, because I wouldn't read it.
How do you become a professional reviewer? Sounds interesting.
Hi, yes I think first impressions and the first 30 pages are most important. Out of four books I might read 1-2. I generally read the first part to ascertain if there is readability- in other words good writing. Then continue. Even then I may not get through the whole book. Every author, worth their salt, these days, knows that the first chapter is vital for capturing the author's attention. Luckily I seem to have the knack as an author to do that. My books are very readable. From Medini Summers on Amazon Kindle Books.



Originally Posted by Ink View Post
Not sure one of those even exists if I'm totally honest, I find nearly every genre interesting as long as it is written well. For example, I'm not usually a huge fan of a biography, but then I read Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, which is (for the most part) biographical, if slightly exaggerated, and that turned out to be the best book that I've read in years. I could say the same about Long Walk To Freedom by Nelson Mandela, or Wild Swans by Jung Chang. So there are always exceptions to the rule.

However, I do not think it would be fair for me to review a book which I had been given the chance to start reading. What I mean by this is that, personally, I can usually tell if I'm going to like a book within the first chapter or so, if it doesn't interest me after 30 pages or so then I don't tend to bother reading any further. So if I was told to review up a book that I'd begun reading and wasn't captured by then I think that would be unfair, because I think in part my mind can get stuck on the first few chapters of the book even when I might decide to read the whole thing. So I think my review would often be stuck on that first impression.

In short, first impressions are a big deal to me, genres aren't.
Not sure if that really answers your question, hope it kinda contributes some though

Last edited by Devon; 09-22-2014 at 03:03 PM..
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Old 11-05-2015, 09:48 AM
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I guess it depends on your ability to execute a critique more than if you are entertained as a reader.

Yes, it is okay to review a book you knew you would not like.
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Old 11-05-2015, 10:01 AM
poirot (Offline)
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Originally Posted by Escriber* View Post
I guess it depends on your ability to execute a critique more than if you are entertained as a reader.

Yes, it is okay to review a book you knew you would not like.

Why?!? (Sorry, Non Serviam.)

This is not feedback to the author. This is something that will impact sales. It's the same a reviewing the book of someone who broke up your marriage, or wrecked your car. Knowing you are likely to adversely rate the book because you don't like the subject is a disservice to thr author as well as the readers.

*cue sharks*
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