Tips for reviewing books
Hey everyone! So late week Friday I shared a post on how I review books and for this week's discussion post (you can find that post here) I thought that I would give you some tips and tricks that I learnt along the way!
Just like last you week you can choose between reading the post or watching a video!
You can find the video here:
But onto the post!
TIPS FOR REVIEWING BOOKS
- READ THE BOOK
I think that this is a pretty crucial and obvious part. You don't have to read the entire book. You are allowed to DNF the book if you just can't push through it. But for the sake of the review and just for a better understanding of the book, try to get through as much as possible. You want to be as clear as you can be in your review.
- DO WHAT YOU NEED TO WHILST READING
This is a little ambiguous but it is for a reason. Let me explain what I mean.
Whilst reading a book some people prefer to have a note book with them so that they can write down their thoughts as they are thinking them. I never do this mainly because it takes away from my reading experience and will therefore affect my rating which is not fair on the author and/or publisher.
I have to agree that it does help. My reviews tend to be a lot clearer but if you are like me then I would suggest that once you stop reading after a certain amount of pages, write down all of your thoughts.
But remember, do what works for you. Your review is about expressing your point of view and it doesn't matter how it gets out there.
- LOOK AT YOUR OVERALL OPINION
What I mean by this is what are your thoughts at the end of the book?
Was it heartbreakingly good?
Was it terrible?
What did you like?
What do you believe didn't work for the book?
- LOOK AT YOUR NOTES
If you wrote down notes during the reading process or at the end, I would recommend looking at them now so that you can start getting an idea of where your review is going to go. This will also help you see what you focus on and help you to develop your own little style of reviewing books.
Having notes allows you to have a more structured approach to your review. Your thoughts are more concise and the sentences seem to flow a lot better. But I personally prefer to just jump past the notes and go at it. By doing this, I am able to express my passion or whatever emotion I am feeling for the book.
- DRAFT YOUR REVIEW
Just like everything you do at school/university/work, draft that review. I can't count how many times I go months after a review has been posted and find millions of typos and bad phrasing.
A draft will allow you to do a brain dump and just get as much as you remember/ how much you have written down in front of you on the interwebs. But whatever you do, DO NOT PUBLISH IS!
- READ THROUGH THE REVIEW
I highly, highly recommend going through you're review. This is the best time to proofread your review and make sure that everything makes sense. This is also the best time to see whether or not you are being too harsh or too soft.
Make sure that whatever you are saying is constructive. Even if the book was as perfect as it can be.
Double check everything. You really want to make sure that there are no typos. I never do this or if I do, it is a quick skim, and because of this my reviews suffer a bit.
- READ IT ALOUD
Reading it aloud may seem stupid or extremely strange but trust me on this. By reading it aloud your ears are picking up anything that doesn't sound right and then you can fix it. This often applies when your sentence structure is a bit off and you are missing a word or a punctuation mark.
- PUBLISH IT
Get your review out onto the interwebs!
- CROSS OVER REVIEW
I cannot stress this enough! If you want to bring more traffic to both your blog and brand name you need to cross reference your reviews on Goodreads and Amazon mainly. If you want to hop onto other book sites then have at it but focus on getting your reviews onto these two platforms. Authors and publishers look at whether you do this or not. It is super important!
- PROMOTE YOUR REVIEW
Once again, this is all about bringing traffic to your site.
Use Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, whatever social media platform you are on to promote your work. This will help bring people to your blog and therefore increase your traffic and views. This will also let indie/self-published authors and publishers get to know you through what books you enjoy1
Those are my ten quick tips for reviewing books. I know a majority are obvious but every now and again, we all need a little reminder! If you have any tips feel free to share them in the comments! I would personally love to know!
Yours in Reading,