Wednesday, February 26, 2014

10 Ways to Review a Book

It is WRITERLY WEDNESDAY! Are you ready to meet a new author and enter to win an awesome book? 

Last week, Kai Strand shared with us her Super Villain Academy book, King of Bad, along with two truths and one lie about herself. Those who guessed the lie correctly were entered into a random drawing to win an eBook!

Kai's game:

1. A long-term guest of the hotel Kai worked for became smitten with her (to be fair, as an employee she was like a captive audience for the man). He owned a high end used car dealership and allowed her to pick out any car she wanted. She chose a Porsche 928, but only kept it for a few months.

2. To celebrate the opening of a manufacturing plant in Dublin, the company she worked for raffled off big prizes. She won a 60 inch screen television with surround sound and a trip to Ireland. She was one number away from also winning the African safari!

3. As the night manager of a fancy hotel in Southern California, she saw a lot of unusual things; Tungan royalty, a drug-induced freak out requiring the police and a straight jacket. One night she found a bottle of expensive moisturizer on the front desk with a card that said, “You are so beautiful and I want to help you stay that way.”

And the lie is: 

#1. This actually happened to Kai's coworker. 

Way to guess those of you who got it right! You are officially human lie detectors. And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...

Stina Lindenblatt!

Congrats, Stina!

Today I have the privilege of sharing a wonderful mother-daughter duo, Barb and Hannah Taub along with their amazing two (mature) books: 

Superpowers suck. If you just want to live a normal life, Null City is only a Metro ride away. After one day there, imps become baristas, and hellhounds become poodles. Demons settle down, become parents, join the PTA, and worry about their taxes.

Null City is the only sanctuary for Gaby Parker and Leila Rice, two young women confronting cataclysmic forces waging an unseen war between Heaven and Hell. Gaby and her younger brother and sister are already targets in the war that cost their parents' lives. Should they forsake the powers that complete their souls and flee to Null City? Meanwhile, Leila has inherited a French chateau, a mysterious legacy, and a prophecy that she will end the world. Gaby and Leila become catalysts for the founding and survival of Null City. 

It just would have been nice if someone told them the angels were all on the other side.

BUY HERE


Hope flares each morning in the tiny flash of a second before Lette touches that first thing. And destroys it.

Every day whatever she touches converts into something new, from bunnies to bombs. Her online journal spans a decade, beginning with the day a thirteen-year-old inherits an extreme form of the family 'gift'. Lette's search for a cure leads her to Stefan, whose fairy-tale looks hide a monstrous legacy, and Rag, an arrogant, crabby ex-angel with boundary issues. The three face an army led by a monster who feeds on children's fear, but it's their own inner demons they must defeat first.

BUY HERE

And now, let me introduce you to the wonderful authors: 

In a former life before children in need of luxuries like food and college, Barb Taub wrote a humor column for several Midwest newspapers.When child #4 joined her research staff, she veered toward the dark side and a career in human resources. Now an expat living in one corner of a castle with her prince-of-a-guy and the world's most spoiled Aussie dog, she enjoys travel, translating from British to American, and collaborating with her daughter Hannah on the Null City series.

Hannah Taub started writing fantasy in kindergarten and never stopped. Computer science is the other great love of her life, and she writes and runs murder mystery parties in her spare time. She lives, creates, and studies in Scotland. 

Hannah and Barb LOVE Wensleydale with cranberries from the Wensleydale Creamery and can be found eating it for picnics on a Yorkshire hillside. 

Barb gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. Those who figure out the lie will go into my magic hat forchance to win BOTH BOOKS. (eBooks) Eek! How cool is that? You have until Tuesday, March 4, at 1 p.m. EDT to guess--and be sure to come back for the answer on March 5.

TRUTH OR LIE

 1. Barb's roommate is the ghost of the abandoned sweetheart in the Bobby Shafto nursery rhyme. 

2. As the seventh daughter of a seventh daughter, Barb's sister would be considered a witch in many places. On the plus side, she will never have to pay for her own beer in Ireland. 

3. Barb was a Pillsbury Bake-Off (R) regional semi-finalist. 


10 Ways to Review a Book

I know how intimidating it can be to write a book review--even when you're elbow deep in the industry. The first time I volunteered to review a book for a friend was Kerri Cuevas' Deadly Kisses. Kerri and I had rubbed shoulders and exchanged laughs over our efforts with three separate Choose Your Own Adventure bloghops. I didn't want to get this wrong. And yet when I stared at that blank box on Amazon, I totally froze.

What?!?

I mean, I've written my whole life. How hard should it have been to say a few nice words about a book I really liked for a friend I totally adored?

Because I get how rough it can be, today I'd like to share a few techniques or approaches that will TOTALLY take the pressure off.


THE FACTZ:

First of all, you have to realize that book reviews are like book food. If you love a book and want it to succeed (or to see more books from the author) YOU BETTER get out there and leave them a review. Reviews boost visibility in Amazon's store. Which means they boost sales. Which means the author is motivated to put out more content.

But wait, that book already has thirty reviews. Why does it need another one?

People are lemmings, or sheep. I hate to say it, but it's true. They say, "Ooh, everyone is reading this book--see, it has two hundred reviews. I bet it's awesome."

A book cannot have too many reviews

But you really didn't like something about this book. Boo hoo. Seriously? I bet there were a TON of things you did like, and good vibes always come back around. Say what you can that's positive and reward the author who put their blood, sweat and tears into it. Don't be an author killer.

Now to the HOW

All of these ideas can be used separately for a simple review or a few combined for a longer one. When I review a book, I usually include one to three of these aspects.

1. THE SHORT REVIEW: If you're not confident writing a long review, don't. One sentence is sufficient. "I love this book." "I can't wait for the sequel." etc.

2. THE COVER: Did it get you? Were you intrigued by it? What questions did it have you asking?

3. THE EMOTIONAL RESPONSE: What did this book make you feel? 

4. THE HOOK: When or how did this book grab you? The end of the first chapter? The first page? The first line? 
Image courtesy of Feliciti

5. SETTING: How was the story world? Realistic? Beautiful? Uninspired? Strange? A place you'd like to visit? Somewhere you're glad you'll never live?

6. THE CHARACTERS: Was there a character you absolutely loved or hated? Tell us about it. (This can comprise an entire review with multiple characters.)

7. PLOT: Book reviews aren't book reports. You don't need to rehash the plot. In fact, please don't. Only summarize when you need it to expound upon a point you want to make. Was there a twist in the story that took your breath away? What was your favorite scene? Did the story move too fast, too slow? Any glaring plot holes? Did you like the way it ended?

8. ORIGINALITY: What makes this book stand out from others? 

9. STYLE: What is the author's writing style? Poetic? Filled with imagery? Abrupt? Gritty? Comical? 

10. RECOMMENDATION: Do you recommend this book, and if so, to whom? (Age and genre preference.) 

And there you have it, ten approaches to writing a book review. And here's an opportunity to test you new skills and WIN.


REVIEW RACE

Anyone who reviews MOONLESS between now and MARCH 10, 2014, and tells me about it HERE, will be entered to win...
An advanced copy of book 2 in the Maiden of Time Trilogy (set to release July, 2014), AND a signed copy of MOONLESS

Time is running out!


Pst! If you'd like one more chance to win MY book, check it out.

Okay, which is the lie? Do you have review phobia? Are you going to enter the race?

115 comments:

  1. I definitely have review phobia...I think when I want to write a review I get flashbacks to my high school journalism class. *shudders* It doesn't have to be some perfectly crafted article, it just has to say what you like about the book. Loved your tips!

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    1. Sarah, journalism, really? That's epic. Now I'm glad I skipped out on that one for Advance Creative Writing.

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  2. When I write reviews, I tend to focus more on how the book made me feel, what I liked about the characters, the voice and /or the writing style. I rarely ever summarize the book - I figure people can go click somewhere else to read what it's about. :)

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    1. Me too, Madeline. It's huge how I felt when I finish. Strange though, I don't often talk about voice or writing style, maybe because I'm way too opinionated in that regard. =)

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  3. This is really helpful, I always struggle with book reviews. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I know what you mean. It can be tough if you don't break it down, eh?

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  4. Awesome tips, Crystal - I think we all have a hard time writing reviews! I love the idea that they're book food :) Thank you!

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    1. Well they are, right? (That's why I hope the reviews for my book contain CHEESE.) =)

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  5. We were just talking the other day about how we think nothing of leaving a bad or mediocre review for a book that's HUGE, like something by Stephen King. We think more about how we're warning others to help save them $$$. When it's an up-and-coming author, though, it seems we're much more aware of our impact. I don't even leave bad reviews for big authors anymore, though. I'm sure Stephen King doesn't read his Amazon or Goodreads reviews, but I'm just much more conscientious of the impact it has on the author's morale! Plus, it's my opinion--if I don't like something, chances are there are 1,000 other people who will!

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    1. Huh. How considerate. I hear that if you stay away from certain review places you can almost avoid the harsh reviews as a first timer. Not that I've been trying... =)

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    2. I'm with you on the potential impact of our reviews, Stephanie. That's why, for me, reviewing books amounts to chatting about books I like.... Casual, sharing with friends what I've been up to really... same as I chat about gardening, writing etc. It has happened that publishers sent me a book or two that I disliked so much I wondered how they made it through the publishing process, and my response was to just not write about it. I simply sent a quick email to the publicist to tell them, it's not my kind of book and that would be the end of it.

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    3. There should be a particular place in hell for the trolls who give new releases one star, with absolutely no comments. I added up the one-stars for one particular reviewer on Goodreads, and noticed that she'd "reviewed" over 150 books in one week. She must be a really fast reader! But the problem is that the very thing that makes it possible for people to do that also makes it possible for so many other amazing, selfless, dedicated readers to offer their opinions and reviews. On balance, I'm not advocating a change. (There may be, however, a few "reviewers" who I'll be murdering in horrific ways in future books...)

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  6. I sometimes forget these, thanks for the review tips!

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    1. Thanks for popping in to say hi! Great to see you.

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  7. Absolutely fantastic post! I can never seem to express the importance of reviews. I know lots of people are scared to write them too, but I am just as happy to see a review that only says "I loved it!" as I am to see a longer, well-written one.

    As for the lie, I pick #1. Though it would be really cool!

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    1. I know! I'm right there with you. Say it was great and move on. I'll take it. Rave about for the next hour and your my best friend. =)

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    2. I suppose it IS somewhat suspicious that a fantasy writer would see ghosts... But I agree with the cool factor!

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  8. Gah. That is so true! I freeze up and my sentences sound wooden when I write a review for someone I know.

    Great post!

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  9. Excellent tips! I'm not the best book reviewer, but I know how important they are so I figure even a not-so-well written nice review is welcomed by a writer.

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    1. For sure! I'll take one any day. =)

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    2. It is absolutely impossible for a nice review to ever be "not-so-well written". Contradiction in terms!

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  10. Hi Crystal ,
    This is really informative, i did some reviews, but some of these tips here are really new to me. I need to follow it. LOL. Thanks for sharing. Best. Phil

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    1. Glad I could expand your "think pool." ;)

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    2. Yes, Yes, You Did IT!!
      Hey, Thank you so much for dropping by.
      Best
      Phil

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  11. Great review tips!
    And for the 2 truths and a lie game, I'm picking #2.

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    1. Awesome. (I guess now you know the system that went into reviewing your book, eh?)

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    2. Thanks, Kate! At least if #2 is my lie, I won't have to come up with the names of my other seven sisters...

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  12. I pinned this so I will have it next time I need to review a book. I am good a book reviews but helpful hints are always useful for prompts when I need them. Thanks

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    1. Yay! Glad I could provide a resource for you.

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  13. Mother-daughter duos are so, so cool! I love that. Congratulations to both of them. YAY for Stina!!!
    Sheri at Writer's Alley

    Home of Rebel Writer CREED

    Mighty Minion Bureau Team #atozchallenge

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    1. I like your links. Nifty. ;) Read about those today.

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    2. So so sorry that I wasn't online yesterday. (Just moved into a new house, and I spent the day waiting for the guy to hook up the internet. The whole day, because he never showed...) But thanks for the mother/daughter cheer. It's really been fun to work together.

      Love your links!

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  14. Crystal,
    Thanks again for hosting me last week. It was SO much fun! Congrats to Stina.

    I have major review phobia, so thanks for those great tips. You've put something that always seems so big and daunting into first grade language for me. <-- sometimes I need that! Perhaps I'll apply these tips to a review of Moonless :)

    As for the lie - I'm going with #1

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    1. LOL. First grade language... Well I don't teach any first graders anymore, but I do teach a 2nd and 3rd grader, so maybe I put it on their level. It"s been a pleasure to have you, Kai.

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  15. Congrats to Stina! I think Barb's lie is #2. Thanks for all the great tips about reviewing. Now, if there was only a tip for writing and reading faster, maybe I'd have time to read and review... :P

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    1. Oh but there are. Actually I was reading some epic ones only this morning about going from 2K a day to 10K a day. Seriously mind-blowing stuff. I'm excited to experiment.

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    2. I know what you mean Lexa. I'm looking at the session-timer on my WIP and feeling guilty pleasure in thumbing my nose at it. Not so much fun when I'm burning midnight oil to make the imaginary deadline that I made up out of thin air... Maybe I made up those seven other sisters too?

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  16. Neat post, especially about writing reviews. I don't have trouble writing reviews, but I'm hesitant to do so, especially after I had a couple of authors get mad at my review of their book.

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    1. I completely understand. I'm always worried about what the author will think...or at least, most times. I guess that's why I try to stay positive. My star rating will depict where I stand on the actual book, but I should say what I liked about it even if it wasn't my favorite thing ever.

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  17. Those are some really good review tips. No, a book can't have too many.
    I say the first one is the lie. (Free beer in Ireland? Too cool!)

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    1. I loved the witch detail too. Totally got me.

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    2. Thanks, Alex. My sister and I just got back from a Guinness tour of Dublin a few weeks ago. It was great! I think. What I can remember, anyway...

      We were pretty confused by the fact that the streets were packed with people in kilts until we found out that Ireland was hosting Scotland in rugby. The weird part is that I moved to Scotland a few days ago, and I've yet to spot a single kilt.

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  18. I do have a review phobia! It's so much easier just to put a rating on something than to actually write something about it.

    My guess: #1, but that's just because I'm skeptical of ghosts. With the lack of a heartbeat and sweat glands, they'd fail a polygraph every time.

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    1. Yeah. I'll always put a star rating on Goodreads, but lately I'm trying to perfect this art of reviews--until it's no longer a big deal. I'm getting there.

      Hey, that's a great concept for a story--a ghost who has to pass a polygraph...

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    2. Thanks, Loni! But I think the question is whether my heartbeat and sweat glands would pass the polygraph. Although I agree with Crystal -- great concept. I think you should write it!

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  19. I tend to be succinct in my book reviews. Since most people read the blurb, I don't like retelling the story. Good Post, I've learned something, Crystal. And Yes, we all need reviews!! I'll go with #1 as the lie.

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    1. I'm reminded of Scott Pilgrim. "I think I learned something." =)

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    2. My poor ghost is feeling most unloved. Maybe I can bring her to life in our next book. I do have to say that I appreciate at least a short reference to the plot in a review. That might be because I often find that reviewers zero in on a better plot logline even than the publishers. Have you ever seen a trailer that gives the best lines from a movie, but when you see the actual film you realize the trailer didn't give the right idea at all?

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  20. Oh, I'm so glad that people are spreading the word that you don't have to summarize the entire plot of the book! A review is definitely not a book report :)

    Loved this post for at least 8,000 reasons!

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    1. 8000 reasons? Wow. That's like, more than will fit in my pickle jar. ;)

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  21. Great review tips! There's a lot of pressure trying to articulate how a story makes you feel.

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    1. It's true, but it doesn't have to be that way, eh?

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  22. Great review tips! I always knew the importance of reviews - at least I thought I did. Then my own book came out. And wow, now they mean so much more! Even if I don't have a lot of time, I now try to review most of the books I read.

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    1. I know what you mean. I'm totally the same way.

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  23. I think Barb's lie is #1, mainly so that the other ones can be true! :)
    Thanks for the really good tips on book reviews!

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    1. LOL. *waves* Great to see you here, Anne!

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    2. Thanks Anne! I'm not sure whether I should buy you a Guinness or send you my brownie recipe.

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  24. You know I like writing reviews. Those are good tips. If I criticize something about a book, I do it very gently on my blog. I take out the criticism when the review goes on Amazon.

    Love,
    Janie

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  25. Publishing with her daughter...what a treat!

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    1. I totally agree. Wouldn't that be a dream come true?

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    2. It is a treat and a dream come true! What mother wouldn't want... one sec -- I have a text from my daughter. The one-gazillionth exchange about a line said by a minor character. Where was I? Oh, yeah: wondering if she might have been switched at birth. (NOTE from my daughter saying she's kind of hoping she was adopted...)

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  26. Thanks for this post. I understand the value of a good review for a book and now I have a better grasp on how to offer one!

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  27. Awesome duo. So much to take in but these books are intriguing. Don't Touch is my fave cover.

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    1. Thanks Sheena-kay! Over at Taliesin, we all worship at the feet of James Caldwell, our graphics god.

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  28. Kai is fab. We hang out in real life. I'll be seeing her Thursday :D

    I'll guess #1 as the lie for barb & Hannah.

    I have a tough time writing reviews. Mine are always really short.

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  29. I have a tough time writing reviews because I'm always trying not to reveal too much. Thanks for the tips!

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  30. Great tips and informative post on reviewing. Thanks for sharing.

    Nas

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  31. If possible, I try and insert a few of my fav quotes from the book in my review. It's one of my fav things in reviews, when I can get little peaks into a book. It's like sneaking a finger of icing off a cake when no one's looking! ;)

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  32. Seriously love the 10 ways to review a book!

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  33. Those are some easy steps for reviewing. I've started to think keeping it very simple is more what an author wants from a review. Can't get much simpler than "I liked it." I get distracted by justifying a 5 star rating.

    How awesome it must be to write with your daughter! Congrats ladies :)

    ......dhole

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    1. Thanks, Donna! It is awesome to write together. Most days. (We're just going to ignore the days where I seriously consider whether she might have been switched at birth in the hospital...) And you are SO right. As an author, the very very best thing anyone can say is that they just read the book. I'd like to send chocolates, put them in my will, and watch their dog when they go on vacation.

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  34. I'm so intimidated by writing reviews; it's almost like I'm back in college the night before a paper is due. These are awesome tips. :)

    A mother-daughter writing duo is inspiring!

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  35. Love the tips, Crystal! I also prefer not to rehash the plot. It's better to go right down to the details on why you like it or not. However, one of the sites where I get some free books from requires reviewers to add a few details about the tale before you write about your reading experience.

    The Musings of a Hopeful & Pecunious Wordsmith

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  36. And I thought I was being lazy by not summarizing the plot. Turns out I was right. But probably still lazy :)

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  37. Great review tips, Crystal! (Also good to know that I'm not the only who sometimes freezes up when she tries to write a review.)

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  38. I'd like to apologize to all of your amazing readers, Crystal. We moved into a new house up in Scotland yesterday and I waited all day -- with absolutely no internet/phone access-- for the guy to hook up our broadband. He still hasn't come, and I'm writing this from Starbucks.

    I was so so frustrated about missing all these amazing comments and beg forgiveness from all.

    I love your reviewing tips. Like all authors, I've been victimized by the trolls and it really hurts. In fact, my writers group has been talking about "If JK Rowling Cares About Writing, She Should Stop Doing It", the meanspirited (value judgement, I know) article by Lynn Shepherd on Huffpost [http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/lynn-shepherd/jk-rowling-should-stop-writing_b_4829648.html]. Bottom line, we think a lot of writers need to be sent to time-out with a copy of your review guidelines for company.

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    1. There will always be unfair critics and trolls out there Barb. Just ignore them and keep doing your best!

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  39. The null city books are up my alley, and I love that it's written by a mom and daughter team!

    And those are great tips for fleshing out a book review.

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  40. Kink of Bad looks great. I also like the cover design. Thanks for sharing it.

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  41. Thanks for the reviewing tips. I'm planning to start reviewing books in the near future, but didn't know exactly where to start.

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  42. Thanks for the tips on reviewing a book. I'm in the process, and it's a big responsibility. I'm not afraid to do it, but it's taking a huge chunk of time - to do it right.

    So many fun morsels to chew on in this post, Crystal. Thank you.

    xoRobyn

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  43. Great post! Thanks for sharing! Following! LOL

    Okay, where am I? Nice of you to bring such awareness of these fine writers. Any reviewing of books is done in my house by Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! However, she has taken note of all the tips.

    I get a lot of authors send me their manuscripts. Either they're desperate or know I'm free!

    Have some real cheese as in British cheese!

    Gary :)

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  44. Great tips for writing reviews and making it a less scary thing.

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  45. I don't write reviews. Probably because I have a nook and no one's on B&N...

    I'm going to guess the lie is #2.

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    1. Hi, Liz -- thanks for the contest entry. You're right that nobody seems to do reviews on B&N. What's up with that?

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  46. I'm guessing #1 is the lie. Those were great tips for writing reviews!

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  47. I used to review books a lot, but eventually fell out of the habit. I think it'd be easier for me to get back into it if I remembered to leave them short and succinct!

    And wow, the premise for Null City sounds so, so compelling. Those covers are absolutely gorgeous, too. I'm going to guess #3 is the lie!

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  48. Thanks Heather, for the kind words about Null City! And yes, we all bow to the amazing artistry of Taliesin's resident design genius, James Caldwell. We have cover reveals for each other, and sit around gasping at what he and his team produce.

    But as for your contest entry, I'm thinking we should go for a Guinness instead of exchanging brownie recipes.

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    1. Oops! Somehow I managed to post without my ID. That last comment was from Barb Taub (the obviously incompetent)

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  49. I like the covers on the Taubs' books. Good tips on writing book reviews. Reminds me how behind I am on the stuff I've read these past few months.

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    1. Thanks J.L. We're pretty excited about the Null City covers too. And you should just see some of the other amazing ones over at Taliesin Publishing. Their design team, headed by the godlike James Caldwell, is incredible.

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  50. Those are some great ideas for writing book reviews. Thank you for sharing them. Thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog too!

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  51. Thanks for the info on how to write a book review. I must admit, I'm horrible about reviewing a book once I've read it, but you've inspired me to be better!

    I think #2 is the lie.

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    1. Thanks for the guess, Kristin! I'll let all those sisters and aunts know you think I made them up. They'll probably agree with you...

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    2. Thanks for entering the contest Kristin! I'll let all those sisters and aunts know you think I made them up. (They'll probably agree with you...)

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  52. Oo, interesting concept! :D As for the lie, I hope it's #1.

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    1. Thanks, Carrie, for those kind words. Good luck with your guesses (although I confess that I'm very attached to the concept of sharing my digs with a ghost...)

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  53. I, too, have a hard time writing book reviews. From all the comments, I see I'm in good company, so thank you for these tips. I need all the help I can get writing reviews, but I know how important they are to help sell the book and how much they mean to the author, so I do my best writing short reviews, but I want to do better and not put it off for so long. I have lots of books I need to leave reviews for!

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  54. Congrats and best of luck to the Taubs.

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  55. Lovely to meet mum and daughter authors!!! All the best to the beautiful duo!! Now I'll have to look twice at my barista when I get my morning coffee...!! Take care
    x

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  56. I have a little review phobia, so thanks muchly for the tips. I'd love to get over that hurdle and be able to share my thoughts on books I've enjoyed.

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  57. Cheese... OMG, CHEESE. The one reason I could never go vegan :(

    I suck at book reviews. Officially. I can never seem to work in everything I want to say about a book--if I liked it, I'm just like "MUST-read, period" and if I didn't... Ok, if I didn't I can get more verbose, but that's not the point. Plus I'm picky. I'm a totalitarian fascist when it comes to grammar, I get hung up on a misplaced comma for *pages*, I despair over plot holes and missed opportunities. So... yeah, I don't do many book reviews. At least not in any official capacity. I stay away from Amazon, but I do post my thoughts (gladly, even snarkily) on Goodreads.

    I know. I'm a horrible human being.

    And all this is just to say THANK YOU for commenting on my A2Z post last week (the one about lasting relationships, tralala). Glad you stopped by!
    Guilie @ A Hop Within A Hop: The A-Z Theme Reveal!

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  58. Congrats to Stina and I think #1 is the lie.

    Thanks for the review tips. Sometimes I wonder if I'm putting enough info in my reviews.

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  59. I don't know of many mother daughter writing teams- but I give them lots of credit to be able to write with each other. :) I think #2 is the lie.

    Great book review writing tips! I try to write reviews after I read a book, but I have some books on my list that need to have reviews put up. I am hoping to have some time to catch up soon (I always keep track when I don't get to them right away and record my brief thoughts).

    Thanks for sharing!
    ~Jess

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  60. A mom and daughter writing team, how cool is that?!

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  61. A great post! Love that they're a mother-daughter writing team! Perhaps #3 is the lie :D
    BTW, I nominated you for an award on my blog, Crystal. :D hugs!

    Nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com

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  62. Awesome. Love the post! Congratulations!

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  63. A mom and daughter writing team, how cool is that. Congratulations!

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  64. A mother daughter writing team is so cool!

    I love the tips for writing a review. I've never written one, but it's nice to have the information handy :)

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  65. Love your tips for writing reviews. They're not easy to write, and I often just sit there forever. Almost as tough as writing a blurb for your own novel!

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  66. Those are great pointers for writing reviews (which are not so easy to write!). And you're right that they're like FOOD for authors!

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  67. Thanks for the great laugh with the lions.

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Hit me with your cheese!