Monday, 2 April 2018

Why I Don't Write Negative Book Reviews

I wanted to write this post because I am really interested in hearing people's opinions. I've read a lot of books in my time, some great and some not so great. Since I started blogging I have written quite a few book reviews. Some I have read I haven't overly enjoyed so I have chose not to review them. In this short post I am going to explain why.

Authors

First of all, authors put a lot of work into creating novels. So I wouldn't feel right about putting it down. I would be really upset if I put maybe years into writing a novel, only for it to be publicly shot down.

Books Are Different Things to Different People

You know when you see rave reviews of a book, then read it yourself and think what is all the fuss about? Or you love a book that no-one else seems to enjoy.
If I write a review saying I enjoyed a book and someone reads it and doesn't that's fine. If I were to read a book I didn't enjoy, that doesn't necessarily mean someone else won't enjoy it.
So if I was to give a bad review, and people decided not to read it because of that, how am I to know it wouldn't be something that they may have enjoyed?

Did Not Finish

There haven't been many books I have added to my DNF list, I like to give a book a chance. So obviously I couldn't review a book I haven't finished, good or bad. If I haven't finished it, how do I know it didn't get really good in the second half or even last couple of chapters?

Reviewing

I haven't been at a point where I have had to give a negative review yet. If I have to review a book at some point I didn't like, you can guarantee I will try and put as many good points in as I can. I just don't see the point of going out of your way to put down someone's work.

I am really interested to hear people's opinions, do you write negative book reviews? Do you think I should? What are your views? Let me know in comments.


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36 comments

  1. Yes! Agree 1,000% with everything you say in this post, Emma. If you can't be nice then don't say anything at all. I would never be horrible about a book for all the reasons you say (the work put in, personal viewpoints, other people might love it). I might not like it and say that it wasn't for me but I would still try and find good things to say because why not? Fab post! X

    Lisa | www.lisasnotebook.com

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    1. Thank you Lisa, I think you find something good in most books x

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  2. These make complete sense! I don’t usually read book reviews, but I have read some that can help me decide if I want to read a book or not. The ones I do read can be quite interesting.

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  3. This make sense and I’ve always felt the same, not everyone has the same taste. I’ve stull been to places and watched things people have said negative things about it and still enjoyed myself but fair enough!

    Jessica & James | www.foodandbaker.co.uk / www.foodandbakertravels.co.uk

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    1. Very true, everyone's tastes are different x

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  4. Agree with this totally Emma a few years ago I tried reading a trilogy everyone I knew was raving about I struggled to read it gave up half way through the 2nd it’s still raved about now personally I don’t understand why but everyone has their own opinion and that’s fine I wouldn’t discourage anyone from reading it xx

    Lisa
    TVAddict2017.blog

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    1. I know I wouldn't like to put anyone off something, they could love it and it's just not for me x

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  5. Completely agree and was just discussing this with my daughter this afternoon in fact! I’m the same as you if I really didn’t enjoy a book and could find nothing positive to say I wouldn’t review it. If I have enjoyed a book with a few bits that I didn’t enjoy I would tactfully say which bits weren’t my cup of tea. Books are very much a personal thing
    and as you say even if it’s not for me someone else may love it.

    Melanie | www.frasersfunhouse.com

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    1. I've been thinking about this for a while and really wanted to hear people's thoughts. Thanks for commenting x

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  6. I totally agree with you Emma! I can’t even imagine how much hard work, energy and passion goes into writing a book, and like you say, it doesn’t feel right to put it down. Everyone has their own opinions and preferences so I’m sure there is something out there to suit everyone’s tastes. Great post and excellent points made 😘 xx

    Bexa | www.hellobexa.com

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    1. Thank you, I would just hate to put something down that someone has put so much work into, then put it online for people to see xx

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  7. Completely agree with everything you say on here Emma! I only review books which I adore but for me I think a good review is anything about 3 stars. But I think a lot of people forget to consider the author in their reviews and it's important to not get personal.

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    1. I only tend to review books I've got a few good things to say about. X

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  8. I totally agree with you! Everyone is different, we all have different taste, so others may like books we don't. And I agree that authors put a lot of hard work and love into their books, so it would cruel to write a bad review about them...

    Perrine
    www.ola-banana.com

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    1. Thank you. I agree sometimes it's just best to not say anything x

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  9. This is a good argument, but I do enjoy feedback or constructive critisicm if it will improve the writing. I do agree that everyone has different books that they like, and at least one person won't like every book that has been written! Thanks for sharing!
    Xo | www.sarahjuneblog.com

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    1. I agree, I think constructive criticism is fine, if it's done in the right way. For example giving good points as well as bad. X

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  10. This is so interesting and you make very very good points. A book definitely means something different to everyone and what you may like or don't like might be different to those who read the review. Again with the point about the authors, they work so hard and produce work they are proud of. Great views on this.

    Jordanne || Thelifeofaglasgowgirl.co.uk

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    1. Thank you. I just think reading is a very individual thing and so many different genres that people enjoy. I always think if I put so much work into something and it was slammed I'd be really hurt. X

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  11. I agree with you, Emma. I recently finished a VERY popular book that I didn't like and, although I still reviewed it, I didn't make it completely negative. I did feel that there were certain aspects that needed to be mentioned, in case someone else read it and those points would ruin their enjoyment too. And no point in writing a review if you didn't finish the book - that's just mean x

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    1. I think as long it's balanced and the good points as well as the bad are mentioned it's ok. I've seen a few reviews on goodreads where people haven't finished the book but still reviewed and rated it. I think with most books something good can be found to mention even if overall it's not great x

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  12. Exactly, even if there is product I don't like I either won't mention it or I'll try and pick out a few positives - someone somewhere can be affected by what you say, even if it is a big brand x

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    1. It's just the old thing of if you haven't got anything nice to say don't say anything at all isn't it? It doesn't do any harm to mention good points even if it's only packaging, book cover things like that x

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  13. Hi Emma,
    It is really interesting that you are bringing up this topic. Just yesterday I was thinking to myself how to approach a potential review of a book that I am reading that is just, honestly, really poorly written. It's a guide book on a topic I am really interested in, so I probably will finish the book. But, I guess the way I will deal with it is just to not write a review or just focus on the things in the book that I did find helpful.

    Thanks for helping me think this through.

    Teresa

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    1. I think as long as it is a balanced review, as in mentioning both good and bad points it's fine. Myself, if I really couldnt find anything good to say I wouldn't review a book at all x

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  14. This is really interesting! I know what you mean, but sometimes I have negative views and I like to see if others felt the same! But I can always find some good in all books too!
    Eleanor x
    www.littlethoughtsfromlittlepeople.co.uk

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    1. I see your point about seeing if others felt the same. Something good can always be found even if just the cover x

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  15. I totally see where you're coming from here, I'd never want to upset anyone with a bad review and we all have different opinions and tastes. I think if I didn't like something but still wanted to mention it, I would lean more towards saying what it was similar to and who I thought would enjoy it rather than dismissing it as bad x

    Sophie
    www.glowsteady.co.uk

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    1. I think that's what I would do as well x

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  16. Great post, Emma. It's interesting to hear different perspectives on this topic. Personally, I'd disagree. I do write bad reviews but of course I have some boundaries. E.G if the book was sent to me in exchange for a review, that's exactly what I'm going to do. Review it. BUT if I don't like it I don't tend to tag the author or the publisher in my review because obviously an author doesn't want to be alerted to a bad review of their book. If they come across it though, that's fine. I always try and make my bad reviews fair and constructive with good points as well.

    Jenny
    http://www.jennyinneverland.com

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    1. I wanted to get other people's opinion because I've been thinking about it quite a bit. I think if I had to do review on a book I didn't like it would try and mention as many good points as possible and maybe say it just wasn't for me. Definately wouldn't tag the author though you are right. I think as long as it's balanced and constructive it's OK x

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  17. I do write them, but mostly on goodreads rather than my blog. And I love reading negative reviews as they're usually more balanced than straight out fan-girling..
    I know that something I hated will work for someone else and vice versa, and I like to point that out.
    Cora http://www.teapartyprincess.co.uk/

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    1. I like balanced reviews, I prefer to just share books I've liked on my blog. Some I've read that I haven't been overly keen on I haven't done a review for. You make good points thanks for commenting x

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  18. I think every piece of work could be helpful or inspiring at least to one person. With that said, leaving a negative review for a book can indeed be tricky. I'm glad about your choice :)


    http://www.desiringsme.com/3-ways-increase-confidence/

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  19. This is a great post, Emma, and I totally agree. If I can’t write a review balancing positive and not so positive points I don’t review at all.

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