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Topic: Just a question regarding book reviews

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Subject: Just a question regarding book reviews
Date Posted: 11/1/2008 11:35 AM ET
Member Since: 8/21/2005
Posts: 989
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I was just curious about this issue. If you don't like a book are you honest enough to write a bad review on it or do you just not write a review in hopes of being able to unload the book from your bookshelf?


Date Posted: 11/1/2008 12:30 PM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2007
Posts: 1,642
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I don't write bad reviews because well, to me, reviews are so subjective anyway. If I don't like a book, it doesn't mean it isn't a good book. It just wasn't for me. I don't use negative reviews to decide whether or not I'll order a book. If i  truly truly don't like a book, I just stop reading it so I don't think it would be fair of me to review it anyway!

For example, I got a lot of Marsha Canham books on here and heard wonderful things about her. I totally appreciated the writing--she's a great author. However I just coudln't get into any of her books even though I wanted to desperately. I know she's a fantastic writer but at the time her books did nothing for me even though I tried my best.


Another example--I just read An Accidental Countess (sorry can't remember the author). But at one point in the book, the heroine talks about sending a telegram. Um--the book takes place in something like 1806 or so. I don't think they had telegrams then. It threw me out of the story for a bit but it didn't make it a book that I'd write a negative review for.

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 12:31 PM ET
Member Since: 12/4/2005
Posts: 2,320
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I've written bad reviews and posted the book--my tastes aren't everyone's so I'm not worried that the book will sit for long.   One that comes to mind is Retreivers.   Really so terrible.   I'll never take the chance on that author again.   I tend not to write reviews anyway -- I either have to really love or really hate a book to bother with a review:lol:

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 1:50 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 376
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The thing about the connection between your writing a bad review and your having the book on your shelf is this, IMHO: there is none. The person who orders a book FIFO has no clue who it is coming from until  you accept the order. S/he doesn't know if you read it, if you liked/hated it, if you reviewed it. So what does it matter what your review says in relationship to whether or not someone will order the book?

Plus, I'm more likely to offer a book I did NOT like on my PBS shelf - if I liked it, I'm more likely to KEEP it! So - I write reviews for myself, mainly, and mostly I only post them on my personal blog. Occasionally I post one here when I feel moved to (and sometimes because I did not like it and I feel this perverse urge to post a negative review when all the others are positive) - I sometimes post reviews at audible.com for the same reason.

I tend to write long reviews (and long posts LOL) so I usually don't post one here since everyone here seems to post those : "I liked it!" short reviews here. But I always, always rate them so my rating is always in the mix.

Do you NOT choose a book here when there are only  "I didn't like it" reviews?

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 2:06 PM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2008
Posts: 14,844
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i rate everything i read, but i don't write reviews too often.  if i *really* don't like something, i'll probably go ahead and write a review for it, especially if there are very few reviews already, or if everyone else loved it.

Do you NOT choose a book here when there are only  "I didn't like it" reviews?

sometimes, yes.  particularly if i'm playing in a swap game and am not familiar with most of the choices, i'll rely on the rating and reviews to help me pick.

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 2:17 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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I'm trying to be better at writing reviews but I try to be honest with whatever I review and try to state why I liked r disliked it.

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 3:16 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 376
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I wrote:  Do you NOT choose a book here when there are only  "I didn't like it" reviews?

Ellen replied: sometimes, yes.

Ah, ok, see, I don't really rely on reviews here. I do look at them, just to see what people are saying, but I also check out review blogs, personal recommendations in this and other forums, Shelfari, and some of the major romance review websites.

I actually prefer to read reviews AFTER I read a book to see what others thought - sometimes it actually helps me clarify my own opinion!


Date Posted: 11/1/2008 4:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I've written a couple of brief ones for books that I seriously thought weren't worth reading, but mostly I don't bother.  I don't want someone to pass on something that they might end up liking just because I think it's bad.  Then again, some books are so bad it's almost a civic duty to post a review:P

Subject: Book Reviews
Date Posted: 11/1/2008 4:40 PM ET
Member Since: 9/20/2006
Posts: 25
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I try to be objective when I review a book but it is more for my own personal use than anything else.  I know that I have several prolific authors on my DO NOT BUY  list.  It doesn't mean they are horrible writers, they just don't do anything for me.   I try to carefully research a book before purchasing it--even if it is written by one of my favorite authors.  For example I usually buy anything Linda Howard writes automatically but I was extremely disappointed in her latest book Death Angel.  As in all things it simply comes down to "buyer beware" or in this case "reader beware".

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 12/29/2007
Posts: 462
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I've do rate the ones I read honestly. I've only done a couple of reviews and its been for ones I really enjoyed and think others may like or may need to know info to appreciate it.

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 5:00 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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a negative review sometimes sells a book - someone on amazon wrote once that the bo ok was nothing but sex sex sex so guess what I ordered? it was a 5 star for me and a 1 star for her...I like to get an idea how people feel about a book though usually teh back cover or this forum decide it for me

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 5:14 PM ET
Member Since: 7/24/2008
Posts: 311
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"I'm trying to be better at writing reviews but I try to be honest with whatever I review and try to state why I liked r disliked it."

Me too.  I haven't written all that many - just  the ones I felt strongly about, or those that haven't been reviewed yet (or very much).  I write pretty much what I'd like to know about a book before ordering.  LOL Call me picky, but I'm always trying to avoid books that have situations where the H/H's verbally fight/slice each other through most of the book,  one/both "fight the attraction" until the end, the "big misunderstanding", a book told in first person, cheating, bad / leave-you-hanging endings, a TSTL hero/heroine, the heroine gets raped, annoying kids, or my all-time most dreaded: "the secret baby" scenario (arrghh!)

If any of those show up in a book, I'm going to review it so people can be forewarned - or if they like that sort of thing, then they know they have the right book!   I just feel like it's returning the favor for all the times someone else's honest review has saved me from a disappointing read.

As for being concerned about someone not ordering a book from me after leaving a so-so review, I figure my tastes aren't everyone's so who knows, what I think is annoying may be great to someone else.

Date Posted: 11/1/2008 5:52 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2007
Posts: 1,334
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I love to write reviews of the stuff I've read.  It helps me remember if I liked the book, or the author.  I generally write a brief description of the book, and point out what I like, or didn't like about the book.    I also try to point out the positive stuff about the book.  Since I mostly read erotica/romantica, its all pretty much Wish Listed.