As a newer book reviewer and book blogger, I am struggling with writing good book reviews and not just book reports.  I haven’t figure out just what the perfect formula is.  I know that with better book reviews will come more opportunities to review so this is a skill I need to figure out.  I have made it my mission over the last week to go in and read hundreds of book reviews on not only Goodreads but Amazon and Barnes and Noble plus professional reviews from NPR, Washington Post and New York Times.  I am still not sure there is a magic formula for a good book review.  In a book review you don’t want to give away so much that you spoil the story, but you want to engage with your audience to entice them to read the book. 

So what is the balance?  According to the Bookish Blog by NetGallery there are eight components to a good book review. 

  1. First things first: Your readers will want to know what the book is about. … describe the plot.
  2. Find the hook. …
  3. Make your opinion clear. …
  4. Find your voice. …
  5. Rating system. …
  6. Consider the reviews you’ve read. …
  7. Explain both praise and critiques. …
  8. Think about the audience.

I personally love reviewing books and reading book reviews.    I love sharing with others when a character captures your heart.  In the past it was difficult to find well written reviews within the genre I enjoy reading. Book blogs have helped elevate the review landscape, making reviews within the genres I enjoy more accessible. 

It takes a skill set to write and engaging review without giving away too much of the of story.  The question becomes how you do this without spoiling the book.  How is the best way to share your admiration with out sharing the ending?  The difficulty of becomes that typically the ending is what makes the book.  When I write a book review I tend to focus on the characters.  Because really if you connect with the characters right away it doesn’t matter the setting of the book or even the circumstances of the story line. I will say a book usually wins me over if it has a Happily Ever After (HEA).  I need this conclusion especially if I am fully vested in the characters.  I love a funny book or situational humor, but it doesn’t have to be.  I don’t mind a heart wrenching drama. Depending on what the trigger that causes you to fall in love with the book and how you convey that will make the best review, but again you don’t want to give away too much. 

So fellow bookcase please bear with me while I figure out the perfect formula for writing a good review.  I am hoping to review at least 2 books a week, practice makes perfect correct. If you have an opinion, a tip or a thought please feel free to comment below.