I have been away from here for a few days, I know. I’m working on that short story. If I’m “missing” for a time, I’m usually found perhaps briefly over on Instagram, reminding you I’m still among the living.
I was surprised to see this yesterday. Also, I don’t normally mention book reviews here. However, when a writer you respect reviews one of yours, you can’t help but take notice of it.
She gave it “4 stars,” which is flattering. True, everyone wants to be a “five,” but I’m unsure about the value of “5 star” reviews. We see way too many “5 stars” on Amazon and I am increasingly finding as a consequence I cannot take them seriously. Most novels – including many huge sellers by super-famous writers – are honestly not “5 star” efforts.
Stars aside, reviews are, I feel, more useful as a guide for prospective readers than for authors. My uncle avoided reading reviews of his books. Following his example, I avoid reading them of mine.
If a reviewer loves your novel, as an author you risk becoming too easily satisfied, even complacent. If another gives it a mixed reception, you are apt to become frustrated. If someone hates it, you are likely to become discouraged as you move on with your next project.
Naturally, every reader – and every reviewer – sees every book differently.
Released in December 2014, Frontiers is my second novel. I hope I have gotten better with my third, Distances (its follow up, and third in that series), and my latest, the unrelated, 1780s-90s drama, Conventions: The Garden At Paris. However, that is, of course, for readers to decide.
I discovered Adele had reviewed it only because I received a notification on my phone that she had “tagged” me in her Instagram post. I then “liked” the post as a friendly acknowledgement. However, following my “rules for reviews,” I did not read the full one at Amazon.
Another “rule” I have is that I do not supply free copies to reviewers (I have explained why previously); as you can see she bought it at retail just like anyone else. Nor did she receive a request from me to review it; she chose to do so entirely on her own.
Have a good weekend, wherever you are in the world. 🙂