For today's discussion post, I am wondering some things about how YOU do reviews! I have recently decided that I kind of want more of a formula for writing reviews because I don't always really know what to talk about! What's important to talk about in a review? What do people want to see in a review? I found something that I have been kind of using for a couple of my most recent reviews, but I want to know what kinds of things you think are important in a review!
Before I really started wondering what I should be addressing in a review, this was basically my formula:
I usually try to recap the story.
I try to talk a little bit about a few of the main characters.
If there are other characters I find important, I talk about those.
I touch on the romance and what I thought of it.
I kinda talk about what I thought of the plot or the story or whatever.
Then I do the 'overall, this is what I thought' paragraph and suggest people who may like it.
But I feel like there's just so much more that I should be thinking about than just that! Or at least I should think about it a little more deeply than 'I liked the girl, the romance sucked, it was slow and I don't recommend'. So I went out and I looked up some review writing tips and found something I found helpful that I've been kind of trying to follow. I can't remember the website where I found it, but basically it is as follows:
1. A couple sentences describing what the book is about.
No spoilers or plot twist reveals.
Avoid talking in detail about anything that happens from the middle on.
2. Discuss what you liked.
Focus on thoughts and feelings on the story and how it was told.
Favorite character and why?
Did the characters feel real?
Did the story keep you guessing?
Favorite part and why?
Were certain scenes written well? (Ex. sad, tense, mysterious)
Did it make you laugh/cry?
Did it keep you turning the pages?
3. Mention what you disliked.
Why didn't it work for you?
Did you wish it didn't have a frustrating cliffhanger?
Did you find it difficult to care about a main character, why?
Was it too focused on a theme you didn't find interesting?
4. Summarize your thoughts
Any series you'd compare it to?
Sometimes I feel like a recap is totally unnecessary or just too hard to talk about without giving anything away. If you add the summary from Goodreads, do you even think a short recap is needed? What are some things you think are important to add in a review?
Another thing about reviews... what are all the places that you think are important to post reviews to? I post them all to my blog, Amazon, Goodreads, and sometimes Barnes and Noble if I feel like shortening my reviews to fit the character count. Do you send all your reviews to the publishers? I am just wondering if there are other places I should be leaving my reviews!
I'd greatly appreciate it if you'd leave your thoughts and advice in the comments below! Am I just thinking way too hard about all this? I've been known to do that!
Thanks in advance for your help! :)