I follow a YA blogger named Tirzah at The Compulsive Blogger who announced a while back that she will only be reviewing books that she loves. She simply doesn’t have the time or interest to read and review everything.
I suppose this is an eventual problem for every book blogger: the never ending reading list, the towering pile of books, the endless recommendations.
I’d like to tell you that every book I touch turns to gold and I can’t put it down. But the fact is some of them are really, really bad.
As a book blogger, you feel that you should warn readers that the book will suck so they can be spared the same kind of disappointment. But you don’t want to hurt the author’s feelings (struggling writers need to eat too) or hurt your relationship with the publisher (who may have given you the book for free) so you water down your bad review. You tell people that it just wasn’t for you but they might like it (if they’ve never read anything better).
Another option is to not review the book. Why waste time on a book that you didn’t like? You give the book no attention and no one gets hurt. I do this for a lot of books that I have great difficulty getting through. If you have nothing good to say, say nothing at all.
The last option is to write a really, really scathing review. After all, I’m simply a little book blogger – it’s not like I have to power to make or break careers. Authors can consider it constructive criticism, if they even see it, and readers can consider themselves warned.
I guess I usually resort to not writing the review – because I’m running out of original ways to water down a review and scathing reviews seem to get less hits. I mean, why write them if people don’t want to read them?
What are your thoughts? Do you want to see bad reviews?