Let’s Talk Bookish: Reviewing All The Books

This week’s LTB is actually about Character or Plot Focused books and since I’m eternally terrible at planning posts ahead of time and I have zero brain capacity to write a half-decent post today, I’m going to post one of August’s LTBs that I missed but had already written up.

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme created by Rukky @Eternity Books and hosted by Aria @Book Nook Bits, and it’s where we get to discuss certain topics, share our opinions, and spread the love by visiting each other’s posts! If you want to join in the bookish discussion fun, check out the September 2022 prompts!

Now without further ado… The topic asks us about:

Reviewing Books?

(SUGGESTED BY RACHEL @ A BOOKWORM IN PARADISE)
Prompts: What makes you want to review or not review a book? Do you review every book you read? Are some books harder to review than others? Do you review books you disliked? If you’ve ever written a ranty review, have you regretted doing so afterwards? Do you delete reviews that are “outdated” or don’t follow what you think of the book now?

REVIEWING ALL THE BOOKS

If you had asked me at the start of the year, my answer still would’ve been yes, I review every book I read. One of the main reasons I started a blog was because I wanted a space outside of Goodreads where I could share my thoughts on all the books—good, bad or mediocre. Plus, my main goal for writing reviews was so that I could remember the books I read better and it definitely helped a lot since I started doing it.

That was 3+ years ago though and until a few months into 2022, I was pretty diligent about writing them, until… I suddenly got tired of doing it. At the start of this year, I read books faster than I could write reviews and at the speed that I was burning through them, combined with my weak AF memory, I found that, by the time I got around to wanting to write the reviews a few days or weeks later, I just couldn’t keep up!

TO REVIEW OR NOT TO REVIEW

I don’t really have a system to choose what books get reviewed or not but I generally post reviews in three places: my blog, Goodreads and NetGalley. It’s a given that ARCs will always get reviewed on NetGalley and Goodreads whether or not I enjoyed them but at the start of this year, I decided to stop posting negative reviews on my blog and that also goes for ARCs, but those reviews will still get posted on GR and NG.

When it comes to my backlist reads, I’ve realised that what gets reviewed depends greatly on my mood and what I’m reading. 😂 I find writing romance reviews the easiest as I’m fine with keeping them more simply structured but when it comes to other books, such as fantasies, I feel it’s important to write more in-depth reviews that dive into the world-building, writing style, character development, etc. Perhaps it’s because the stories are more complex but I always feel a little guilty for writing mini-reviews for SFF titles. So when I get on a roll with reading but not with writing reviews, that’s when it gets hard to churn them out because I’m not in the right mood/headspace. That said…

WHY IS IT SO EASY TO WRITE REVIEWS FOR BOOKS I DISLIKE?

Although I have difficulties expressing my thoughts for the books that I loved with my whole chest, the reviews I struggle with the most are for the books that were simply average. You know, the ones that weren’t terrible but neither were they anything great and while the story and characters were enjoyable enough, nothing about them stands out. I find that I never know quite what to say about these books because they were just “okay”. On the other hand, the reviews that come flowing out of my brain like magic are usually for the books that I had lots of issues with or didn’t like. I’m not alone in this feeling, right? Right?! That said, as easy as it is to write these ‘negative’ reviews, I don’t think I write scathing or offensive reviews. What wasn’t for me might work for someone else, so I always try to temper my negative emotions and thoughts when writing about what didn’t work for me.

UPDATING AND REMOVING OLD REVIEWS

I’m not much of a re-reader so I’ve yet to go back and update my old reviews. I am planning to do a “re-read project” at some point because there were books that I rated 5-stars but never wrote reviews for and now barely remember anything about, so I’d like to get my thoughts down for those. I also don’t generally remove reviews but earlier this year, I decided to delete five from my blog and Goodreads as I no longer wanted to support the books/authors, and I’d likely do it again in the future if I learn something that doesn’t sit well with me.

Do you write reviews for all your reads? If not, how do you decide which ones get reviewed and which don’t (obviously, aside from ARCs)? Do you also find it easier to review books you didn’t like/hated or is it just me? 😂

12 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Bookish: Reviewing All The Books

  1. You are 100% not alone in finding that “negative” reviews seem to be the easiest type of review to write. I think for me it’s usually because I can pinpoint exactly what it is that didn’t work for me. And by that I don’t mean it just wasn’t my cup of tea, but rather I can pinpoint story elements that I thought were sub-par. Occasionally if I really really loved a book those types of reviews can be easy to write, but I struggle with them more than writing “negative” reviews because I feel the need to perfectly convey just how much I loved it and words often fall short. I do agree with you that books I find to be “average” can be difficult to review.

    Lastly, I used to review everything I read. But starting around June I fell a bit behind and, at this point, I don’t feel I remember the books well enough to write a review. There are two others I might still write reviews for. But I don’t feel too bad about it because they weren’t ARCs.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t write reviews for all my reads. I do write reviews for all ARCs but I give myself the option for books I buy or get from the library. It’s kind of freeing and I like it ❤️ Excellent post!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel you on the suddenly getting tired of reviewing all of the books. I make sure to review all ARCs on my blog, GR, NG, and wherever else ARCs need to be posted. For non ARCs, I only review a book on my blog if I want to. I review them all on GR with at least a sentence or two about how I felt about them. That’s it so I can keep track of what I read to look back on. I also feel like same way about books that were average. They’re hard to review. The opposite directions are easier with negative easiest. I think that’s because those negative things really stand out. I reread/listen at times. If I want to I add an update to my GR review. If not, who cares. haha

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  4. YES OH MY GOSH average books are the worst to write reviews for!! i pour everything into conveying how much i love or hate a book so when the average books come along, i have no idea what to say😅😅 and rereading books is something i rarely do, although i do want to go back and update my old reviews! great post💜

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We have very similar review styles, except I struggle most with books I didn’t love. It’s hard for me to find that balance between staying positive and constructive and not making it too personal. But I overthink everything. 🤦‍♀️😃

    Like

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