That Tetchy, Touchy, Testy Topic – Book Reviews

It has come to my attention that it is time to update readers and writers on my book review process... So please, find a comfy chair... because this might take more than a moment.

There are several ways to look at book reviews.

From a historical perspective book reviews were most respected when published, or blurbed by literary professionals, either inside literary publications or somewhere in/on the book (cover) itself. Almost every writer, if not e-v-e-r-y single writer, kowtowed to have a lit maven of the Boston Globe, you-name-the-best-selling-author merit, praise his or her book.

Today, while this continues to be a mainstream value, the over zealousness of getting ‘honest-reliable’ book reviews has tapered the appeal for readers primarily, and some authors as well.

Without spelling out the list of remarks that dispute the authenticity of reviews, I am one of the authors who early on shunned seeking reviews. Of course, it excited me to hear/read what a reader had to say about one of my books, but I can count on one hand, and maybe one or two fingers on the other hand, how many times a reader has taken time to review one of my books.

Harriet Koskoff, Midwest Reviews, Harriet Klausner, and RAWSISTAZ™ reviewers floored me to read what they thought of my stories. Absolutely and wholly floored me because even though I sent my book(s) to these individuals, I did not expect to hear anything back.  So, for them to not only review my book without NO cajoling, and to share thoughts and words that expressed my work contained literary merit, swelled my head (and you’ll have to use your imagination to picture) how BIG!

As a reader, a writer, and book reviewer this transparent reviewing process is invaluable to the book industry.

We---and we meaning those of us that value the book industry---want to build a trust among readers. We want readers to trust that what we write about a book is true to our perception of what we read.

We, and perhaps I’ll leave this one at solely I, want to build a trust among writers and authors as well. Regardless of what I write about a book, I want authors to trust that I actually read their book and it really resonated with me. I want them to feel the way I did when Harriet Koskoff, Midwest Reviews, Harriet Klausner, and RAWSISTAZ™ reviewers reviewed my books.

Generally, I’ll invest at least a sentence to all books I’ve read on Goodreads. Most of those that really resonate with me I’ll post on my review blog. And a few select reviews I post to Amazon.

At all costs I steer clear from turning potential readers away from reading. I’m not giving no reader the opportunity to say, “yeah, I think you’re right. I won’t read that book.”

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