A big family, a reading addiction, and the occasional celebrity scandal are the ingredients of life that create one woman's opinion on just about everything.

Monday, March 12, 2007

About Book Reviews

I sometimes wish I was as disciplined a reviewer as Rosario or had the biting wit of Bam or that I was as concise & honest as the Ja(y)nes at Dear Author. I have opinions about books but I get frustrated condensing my thoughts coherently.

Recently I wanted to write a review of EC Sheedy's WITHOUT A WORD. I ruminated for several days when Dear Author did a review that really nailed the book for me. In a weird way this released me from the merry-go-round in my head that had been writing the review over and over again. My thoughts were now out there thanks to Dear Author and I no longer felt compelled to do my own review. Whether or this is a good thing (I'm thinking it is) or a bad thing I don't know, but I do feel grateful.

While I read 4 to 5 books a week there has to be some intangible something that makes me want to review a book. With EC Sheedy even though I had some issues with the book all I thought at the end of it was that I wanted to read more books by this author.

With the last book I actually reviewed, NIGHT IN EDEN by Candice Proctor, I wanted to comment on how nice it was to read a historical with sexual tension that still had lots of color, detail and layers to the characters. I never know what it is that will make me feel like I want to share my views on a book. Frankly I want to review more books, but this remains a largely unrealized goal for lack of discipline to make myself review something without my woo-woo nudge.

As mentioned above another reason is my feeling that I don't get my thoughts and opinion condensed and coherent. I sometimes feel my reviews are a pointless ramble. Yet, I so enjoy reading what other readers think about books, no matter the format or lack thereof. It is one of my very favorite things about the blog-o-sphere.

Today I just feel moved to mention how humbled I feel by all of you talented people out there. For the variety of books you review, old and new, for the reminders of favorites, for opening doors to new genres and authors, and most of all for your honesty, thank you, thank you, thank you. My reading has changed because of it and I can no longer imagine my book buying experience without it.

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11 Comments:

Blogger Marg said...

I agree that there are definitely some talented reviewers out there! Half the time I am tempted to just link to their reviews instead of writing my own, but I figure that that would probably be cheating.

2:35 PM PDT  
Anonymous scooper said...

I just wanted to let you know that when I decided to write a blog I surfed the web for review sites. I knew that I wanted to write/review romance books, but had no idea how to go about doing so. Your site encouraged me to begin blogging. I liked the way you reviewed and it inspired me to write the way I like to, short and to the point. I may not dig deep, but I enjoy sharing my opinion and part of that is due to you.

3:29 PM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Marg, I cheat all the time by linking to a review that really says what I'm feeling about a book like Dear Author did with Sheedy's book. I just keep plugging along because reader reviews are a favorite for me and I don't want anyone else to stop so I try do do my part.

scooper, that is just the nicest thing you said about me! Thank you so much. I love your new review format with the quotes from the books. Very catchy and appealing.

4:04 PM PDT  
Anonymous Jane said...

How nice! I love reading reader reviews. I sometimes think that talking about the books help crystallize what was meaningful and what wasn't.

7:27 PM PDT  
Blogger ames said...

Book blogs have definitely influenced my book buying. LOL

I'm just really grateful for all the bloggers out there. I love this community of ours and so glad I found it. :P

7:51 PM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Jane, Dear Author has become a must read for me each day. I'm in awe of the volume of work you produce there.

Ames, I've tried and read things I probably never would have without reader blogs. I think it's just incredible and I too feel damn lucky to have found it.

8:32 PM PDT  
Blogger CindyS said...

I know exactly how you feel - if I was already going to buy the book then I avoid reviews. Then I won't read any until I have written up my 'opinion' (can't call them reviews because I can end up on a side road and well, that's not conducive to an actual review). I am also in awe of those who can put down not only what they thought about the book but are also able to give enough information without spoiling the story. For me, it's a fine line.

Just think that there are people out here that want to know what you think about a book. It doesn't have to be perfect.

Still, it would rock to be like Bam ;)

CindyS

2:20 AM PDT  
Blogger Jenster said...

As a person who refuses to review books because I really suck at it, I think you do a great job of reviewing.

5:35 AM PDT  
Blogger Tara Marie said...

Rosie, I think you're reviews are good, and you've summed up why I only write a handful of reviews/commentaries on the books I read each month. Other's do it so much better. My synopses/summaries stink and to be honest I don't even like writing them. But I still love to comment on what I've read, so I guess that kind of leaves me just giving thoughts and feelings about books. Doesn't touch what other do.

7:35 AM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Cindy, Amen! To see the inner workings of Bam's mind...

Jenster, thanks for the support. It wasn't my intention to have people give me a pat on the back...although it certainly is nice. I was just struck by the great reviews I read almost everyday by just regular folks who do it out of love for books and aren't even paid for it!

TM, I really enjoy your reviews because they are so personal and accessible. I feel like you've really thought about what you are going to say and how you felt reading the book.

9:10 AM PDT  
Blogger Rosie said...

Cindy, Amen! To see the inner workings of Bam's mind...

Jenster, thanks for the support. It wasn't my intention to have people give me a pat on the back...although it certainly is nice. I was just struck by the great reviews I read almost everyday by just regular folks who do it out of love for books and aren't even paid for it!

TM, I really enjoy your reviews because they are so personal and accessible. I feel like you've really thought about what you are going to say and how you felt reading the book.

9:11 AM PDT  

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