OK obviously I do review books, I’m a book blogger so it’d be a little odd if I didn’t post any reviews or express an opinion on what I’ve read, but if you follow my blog regularly you may have noticed that there’s a bit of a disparity between the number of books read and the number I’ve posted reviews for. I do try to review almost every ARC I receive, someone was kind enough to give me it for free so I feel I should, but there are quite a few occasions when I just don’t want to review a book. Here’s why.
I can’t find the words
This most commonly happens with books I love, I literally can’t find the right words to express how a book made me feel in any kind of meaningful way. A Monster Calls (or pretty much any Patrick Ness), ADSOM, Six of Crows are all books I haven’t been able to review for this very reason.
Honestly if I did attempt a review there would be some serious fangirling going on. Loved the author, loved the story, loved all of the characters (where’s that thesaurus I can’t keep using love). Other times I just can’t pinpoint what it was that made me feel that way, so describing it is nigh on impossible.
It’s all been said before
Does anyone really want to see my review of ACOTAR or A.N. Other book which is super popular and everyone in the whole wide world has read?
Personally I love reading reviews of these books as I want to know how other people’s opinion compares to mine but I get the feeling there are many out there who are getting a little fed up with reading the same reviews of the same books over and over and over again. I also feel like I don’t have anything original to add and anything I would say has been said before and by someone much funnier or more intelligent than me.
Also known as Fear Of Author Reading (OK I totally just made that up). I’m fairly certain the big popular authors are probably never going to see the reviews I write and if they did I doubt they’d care, but they might. The lesser known authors however will almost definitely see it. As someone who’s kind of in awe of authors and very self conscious about my own writing this terrifies me. What if they think I’m criticising and take offense? What if my review’s poorly written and they see it? Or, even worse, what if it’s my favourite author and I didn’t love the book? What if I meet them or know them? It’s all just too scary.
I don’t feel qualified
I’ve never even written a short story never mind a book, I have no qualifications in English Lit or Creative Writing so am I really in a position to review someone else’s work. Most authors do say they want people to leave reviews even if they’re just a few words but there are certain books, generally the classics, which I feel I don’t really have a right to post a review of. Academics and experts have spent years studying these books and many of them are taught in schools. Any opinion I had would be decidedly amateur and uninformed.
Psychological thrillers, murder mysteries, sequels these can be almost impossible to review. You probably can’t say much about the storyline, you may not be able to talk about the characters without giving something away so what’s actually left. It was good???
There’s literally nothing to say
There’s nothing wrong with it but nothing I particularly liked either. The whole thing was just meh and I don’t care enough to want to spend the time trying to figure out what to say about it other than it was ok.
It’s not blog appropriate
I generally try to make sure my content is suitable for all ages so while I do read adult books I don’t tend to post detailed reviews (I’d probably self-combust from embarrassment if I tried anyway). There will be a quick liked it or didn’t and that’s probably about it.
I don’t want to hate on a book
I started my blog because I love books and want to chat to other bookish people. I don’t really want to write a review slagging off a story an author has spent months or years creating particularly if it’s just not for me. Don’t get me wrong if there’s something in a book I find really offensive and wrong I’ll quite happily post a big rant but generally if I don’t like it, it’s a quick “not for me” and move on.
I just want to enjoy the read
Yep sometimes I just want to read for the joy of reading without the pressure of having to write a review.
I read somewhere that a good review should be objective, unemotional and that you should provide supporting evidence for your views. I’m pretty sure this means that none of my reviews are actually any good (not qualified remember) but when I do write one I think through all of my points. What did I like or not like and why? How was the writing? Were the characters well defined or stereotyped? How was the pacing? Basically I analyse it and let’s face it even the best books will struggle to withstand scrutiny so if I loved a book I don’t want to analyse it. Partly because it may turn out to be not that well written or a little cliched but mostly because I want to just bask in the way it made me feel.
So that’s my reasons for not reviewing every single book I read. Is it wrong not to review all of the books I read? Do you?
I’d love to know what you think so please, please comment below.