Book chat: How do I write reviews?


Hello, my dear followers! It has been a very long time since I did a book chat, so today I wanted to talk about the way I write reviews. When I read other people’s reviews on Goodreads and WordPress, I notice how different they all are. Some people use a lot of gifs, other people’s reviews are merely one sentence, there are those who have very elaborate rating systems, etc. This is not a “how you should write” reviews posts. This is merely a discussion about the different types of reviews and the way I write them. Anyway, let’s get started.

First of all, I think it’s safe to say that my reviews are elaborate, especially when I dislike a book. My review of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child for example is over two thousand words long, and it easily could’ve been a thousand words longer! I always want to explain why I liked or disliked a book.

Talking about disliking books: I find it so much easier to write reviews for books I hated. When that’s the case, I list the things I disliked. Even when I love a book, I will mention the problematic aspects in my review. As a result, my reviews always seem to focus much more on the negative aspects, rather than the positive.

The thing I struggle with the most while writing down my thoughts, is the order. I never know whether I should start with the positive or the negative. I think that’s my main issue I have to work on.

Some people write a synopsis. For some, that counts as a review. I don’t do that. If anyone wants to know what the book is about, they’ll have to read the blurb. Most of my reviews are definitely meant for people who have read the book, or at least know what it is about.

This year, I decided I no longer want to rate the books I read. In my opinion, star ratings are quite superficial and subjective. And like I’ve said, my reviews are elaborate, so they convey my opinion much better than a rating. Furthermore, I’m reading more diverse books this year. Even when I didn’t enjoy something (for personal reasons, not problematic aspects), I don’t want a low rating to put people off from reading the book themselves.

Having said that, I’m still rating books on Goodreads and Netgalley. My reviews didn’t get nearly as many likes anymore when I stopped rating the books I read. I put a lot of time and effort into them, so naturally, I’d like for people to read them. And when I review ARCs on Netgalley, I think it’s almost mandatory to rate them. But I won’t over-think the rating anymore. When a book isn’t problematic and I very much enjoyed it, I’ll probably rate it 5 stars even when it isn’tΒ  my new favourite book. No more half ratings for me.

I don’t include any gifs or images in my reviews. I don’t enjoy to read those kinds of reviews, so why would I write my own reviews like that?

At the end, I always write a conclusion. It sums up how I felt about the book and says whether or not I would recommend it.

How about you

What kind of reviews do you write? And which ones do you prefer to read? Do you have any advise for me? I’m very interested to learn more about your reviews, so let me know in the comments!


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