Recently, I had to reply to an email and explain to a writer why I would be unable to leave a review for their book. Ugh. I hated to do it. You know me, though. I don't review books I don't finish, and I just couldn't finish that book.
But it got me to thinking about reviews in general.
The popular idea is that any review is a good review. (Like the old wisdom that any press is good press.) I disagree. Sometimes a bad review can totally tank a writer's sales, crush someone's spirits, etc. I'm not willing to do that. At the risk of ruining my rep*, I am a nice person. Plus, my mother taught me that if I don't have anything nice to say, I shouldn't say anything at all. So, silence is my bag. It's golden, after all.
However, no reviews can also tank sales.
And a carelessly worded 5-star reviews can somehow tank sales. Go figger.
Anyway, I started out writing this post to provide a tongue-in-cheek way to leave reviews if you're not good at writing them, but it morphed into something else. :shrug:
So, if you're inclined to leave a review but don't know what to say, here's a template to help you out.
I (enjoyed, despised, was meh about) this book because (the plot was exciting, the characters were lame, I couldn't get into it). The main character was (easy, hard) to relate to. The villain was (cardboard, deliciously evil, too nice). This author's writing style (put me to sleep, kept me on the edge of my seat, left me wanting more, confused the heck out of me) and I (can't wait for the next book, hope they get help, encourage them to find a fitting psychotherapist).
Pick the phrasing that best suits your needs and delete the rest, choose a number of stars to reflect your attitude, and VOILA!, you have a review.
The point here is to leave a review - at Amazon, at Goodreads, at B&N... wherever you choose, but for the love of writers and reading, please leave them.
But only if you can be positive, or helpful, or if you have to say something negative, at least can be constructive in your criticism. K?
*Hubs and I have a running joke that he's the nice one and I'm the mean one. Oh, he is nicer than I am, but I'm not really mean. Not in public anyway. LOL