Thursday, May 17, 2012

What Makes a Good Book Review?

Recently, my awesome blogger-buddy Jenni brought up a Great Question!!  She titled it The Problem with Book Reviews and wondered What Makes a Good Book Review?

What a great question!!

I'm totally curious what your answer is. I have very specific goals about my reviews that I got off of some other book blogger's Survey way back in November, or something. 

I wanted a guideline and these survey results helped a lot as a starting point.  For me.  I totally wish I knew who had originally posted this... if it was YOU, please speak up!! I'd like to Thank You for being some of my INSPIRATION to writing Awesome Reviews!!!

...'cause my reviews are AWESOME, right?  *crickets*

Well... we all try. No one's claimin' to be "Professional" as Parjunkee so aptly clarifies, otherwise we'd all be makin' a little more Moolah and buying more books and the entire world economy would turn around. (Speaking of which, do remember to click every Google ad you see!!  Right?!)

So here are the Results from the Survey from which I charted my Reviews:

Ok... in order of importance (what got the most votes) on the survey of unknown origin:
1 - Book Picture
2 - Giveaway
3 - Book Blurb
4 - Book Trailers, Goodreads Link, Short -n- Sweet
5 - Recommendation, Rating, Summary in own words, Character Break-down
Then it starts getting  messier:
6 - Book Stats, Plot Break Down, author link, deep thoughts, quotes
7 - Content alerts
8 - How to Buy, Romantic Break down, Reason Read
No votes at all:
Book spoofs, author info, where discovered book

OBVIOUSLY this is a survey completed by book review readers, not publishers & authors. Lol.

I used the information here and adjusted it to fit my style... and, um, my favorite reviewer's style. *ahem*

Calico Reaction: BlitzBefore blogging I followed Calico Reaction and I love her reviews - she has a consistent pattern, lots of attitude/personality, random lengths, spoiler disclosure and this confidence. It's like she knows which genres are which, is clear about her opinion, and launches fearlessly into odd tirades. I love it. I follow her example as closely as possible without stepping on her heels. I hope.

Back to Survey Results & Putting them to Good Use:

penFor starters, I add what I think Pubs-n-Authors want, too, like how to buy & links, but I make them as compact as possible so they don't detract from my review. They are, after all, my source for free books. And one of my main goals is supporting books & authors. So logical it's almost queasy!!

I always make sure to add the pic & blurb... and usually the character breakdown, 'cause I like that.

The rest I add to my review when it applies or I feel it.

I try to add a Cover Commentary, too. Everyone has an opinion about the look of the cover!!  :-D

penOh!!  And I pay lots of attention to Skim-ability by bolding key phrases. Sometimes I feel kind of dumb picking out some of my own "outstanding" words, but if someone was in a hurry, they could grab the gist of my review by hopping thru the bolded bits.  I'm careful to make clear sentences at the beginning of every paragraph for the same reason.  Basically, I'm a fanatical skimmer myself, see, and as much as I LOVE going off into the wild blue yonder on some fun tangent, I realize that not everyone wants to read all that. So I TRY to keep my wild bunny trails to the end of paragraphs. So if you're a skimmer, you just missed this entire tirade.  :-D  However, if you're reading every word I write, you're chuckling. I hope. And we now have a private joke between the two of us that skimmers missed out on. ha!

So, here's our very own Survey!! 

This SURVEY will remain in the right-hand side-bar for 2 weeks. Aren't you curious?!

Question Mark