Hiya bookish people!

When you look online at many different blogs, you will find reviews of popular books, books people have read, and books that many people recommend. I’m walking the blockbuster books of the YA genre. Books like Stepsister, and Children of Blood and Bone, and Sorcery of Thorns, and Red White & Royal Blue. These books all get raving reviews, and I will admit that nearly all my book reviews for books I haven’t been sent are highly rated.

I’ve written reviews for books like Aurora Rising, the first two books of The Raven Boys & The Dream Thieves, and Beth wrote a raving review for Red, White, and Royal Blue. All of these were three or more stars out of five. And why is that? Well, I enjoyed them, obviously! But apart from that. I’ve written a bad review for After, but I don’t always write reviews for books I have read and enjoyed. Examples, you ask? Damsel, and Stepsister, and Throne of Glass, and Turtles All the Way Down. And I am going to explain my reasons for why I do it this way.

If I didn’t enjoy the book, I don’t want to talk about it. Books like Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, or Midnight Sun, or Paper Towns, they were all popular to a degree, and I didn’t like them. It’s purely the fact that I try not to dwell on things that I don’t enjoy. Why would I put tabasco sauce on every food I served to my guests if I didn’t like it myself?

The books I review for my own use that have high ratings are because I want to agree and talk about all the books that I want others to read. And maybe, for once, I am in the middle of the hype period for a book and have the opportunity to review it while it is still relevant. That’s why I was okay to review Aurora Rising when I did, or have Beth write a review for Red, White, and Royal Blue.

Now, I do actually tend to rate ARC’s lower than I do books that have been properly published and I am reviewing my own violation. This isn’t because I want to put down new or indie authors, nor is it because I only want to review the next big blockbuster book (because just because it isn’t a blockbuster doesn’t mean it isn’t an awesome book). ARC’s tend to have less editing, more plot errors and less proof checking. This isn’t because of the author, or for lack of the author trying, sometimes it is just that authors with less experience tend not to produce books that have had such a fine-toothed comb run over them.

I like most of the ARC’s I get sent, in fact, all of the ARC’s or Proofs that I’ve rated less than three stars I can count on two hands. But a lot of my opinions on books come after I’ve read the book, which makes it difficult for me to write a glowing review right after I have finished the book.

So yeah. I tend to only write reviews for books I like because I tend not to dwell on things I don’t enjoy, and that means that my non-ARC books will nearly always have a higher rating.


13 thoughts on “

  1. This is really true as to why I don’t really talk or share reviews for books I didn’t love because like you said “It’s purely the fact that I try not to dwell on things that I don’t enjoy.”, like we most likely started a book blog to talk about these we are passionate about so we naturally want to talk about these books which we loved and what to hear what other people thought.
    I do mention books I didn’t like as it could inform people as they might be interested but I’m not going to do a whole post dedicated to it!
    Whereas ARCs can be given in exchange for a review so you want to do you end of the ‘deal’ so you are going to share every review not just the ones you love.
    This is a great discussion and very true! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly! I had a friend ask me why all my reviews were so “happy” and it prompted me to write this post.
      I don’t either, but I do love reading some salty posts either way!
      ARC’s deserve a bit of a deeper and more critical review, so I kinda have to be a bit harsher when reviewing them.
      Thank you! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh yes definitely I don’t really write reviews for books I read for personal enjoyment that I don’t enjoy, in fact even reviews for books I did enjoy are rarer these days as I have more time constraints but if I really loved it I’ll review it. And I appreciate a well written discussion of why someone didn’t enjoy a particular book, but I’m not as inclined to write one myself?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know exactly what you mean – a lot of times I would rather excessively complain about a book over a spread amount of time rather than write a straight up hate-post just for content. I don’t want to be ‘that’ person.
      Thank you for your comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This is an interesting take on reviews! I like the idea of not dwelling on things you didn’t enjoy.
    If I write a review of a book or not, for me, is more based on whether I have anything significant to say. Sometimes, when it’s a book I’ve loved, I’ll find that all I can say about it is that I loved it. Whereas for books somewhere in the middle, usually I’ll have both things I enjoyed and didn’t enjoy about it, and I like being able to discuss those things.
    Nice post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      I can understand that – I’ve found heaps of books I could talk about until my lungs give out, but also so many where I just… enjoyed it and didn’t feel the need to dedicate 300 words to it. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This was such an insightful discussion, Emma! I can understand your reason behind not reviewing books you didn’t rate high! Knowing that definitely is helpful when I visit your blog now for reviews because, if I see something isn’t an ARC review, I’ll know that you probably really enjoyed the book 😄. Also, your reason for rating ARCs harder makes sense, and it’s nice that you don’t have any mal intent 🙂.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!
      I always try to give good reviews for books I think people will enjoy 🙂
      And I always give my true thoughts, it’s only fair to the author and to you guys ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I think this is very insightful. I see now problem with reviewing only what you want to (and especially if it’s on your own blog!) and commend you on developing your own process!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I try to review every book that I read but I definitely get not wanting to dwell on the bad ones. Plus I think that negative reviews are a lot harder to write because however much you may have disliked a book somebody has worked really hard on it so you have to try and find the nicest possible way to explain why you didn’t enjoy it. Which isn’t always easy.

    Liked by 1 person

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