No surprise, I read a lot of book reviews! If you’re reading this, you probably do as well – you probably have a book blog, you follow other book blogs, maybe you have Goodreads…
But when I first started Mim Inkling, the question of “what makes a good review” was something I really worried about… Were there aspects of the book I was “supposed” to talk about? Did I need to sound super smart? Should I use memes or images? What made a good book review?
I’m not claiming to have this figured out. Honestly, sometimes I still wonder! But here are my two cents. Things I like to see in a book review…
A picture of the book cover
I know, you can’t judge a book by its cover… But I still like to see it! It helps me make a decision about whether or not this is something I want to read.
I like to read reviews with a clear voice and personal perspective. I’m reading the review to get the thoughts of the person writing it. I don’t just want a summary of the book – I could get that on Amazon. I want to know what they think, their personal preferences, how it relates to other books they’ve read… The person in the review is important, if that makes sense.
Anything which makes me laugh is always a win.
Honestly, I only have limited time to read blogs and these are reviews of books I haven’t read yet; until my interest is caught by something the reviewer says, my attention span is pretty limited. Anything with long blocks of text, or where it’s not been broken up into easy read chunks, you’re going to lose me halfway through. I’m not terribly proud of that… But there it is!
I think there is a place for a surface review, and some books really don’t have a lot of depth (which isn’t always a bad thing), but my favourite reviews are the ones which go a bit deeper. The ones which make me think.
What do you think makes a good review? Help me out here!