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Booking Through Thursday


I receive a lot of review books, but I have never once told lies about the book just because I got a free copy of it. However, some authors seem to feel that if they send you a copy of their book for free, you should give it a positive review.
Do you think reviewers are obligated to put up a good review of a book, even if they don’t like it? Have we come to a point where reviewers *need* to put up disclaimers to (hopefully) save themselves from being harassed by unhappy authors who get negative reviews?


I’m always honest about whether or not I like a book; the fact that it comes from the publisher or author really makes no difference to me. I don’t think that reviewer’s are obligated to post a good review of the book; and if an author expects a good review from someone, they’re entirely mistaken about the whole POINT of a review. And the point of a review is, to me, to help a reader make an educated decision about whether or not they’ll buy/ read a book. It may be perverse, but I always feel a bit satisfied when I post a negative review, and someone comments that my review has helped them decide to read the book and see for themselves. That said, however, I try not to totally trash a book (and certainly never its author), and to find at least one or two nice things to say about it.

With regards to the last question, with what’s been going on in the bookblogosphere lately, it’ll be a sad day when reviewers have to put up a disclaimer to save themselves from unhappy authors.

Comments

DeSeRt RoSe said…
I believe that a reviewer should be VERY honest and not lose his/her creditiability by writing +ve reviews if they don't like the book, because a lot of people depend on these reviews whether to read or not read the book, I'm one of them!
But the reviewer should not make his/her opinion the base for the review, I mean give a short summary about the book then give your opinion so readers would have a choice since they might not really share your taste for books :)
So being honest as you are I congratulate you and say continue doing what your doing and have fun doing it :)
mattviews said…
I'm with you about the disclaimer issue. Why should we have a disclaimer if we're voicing honest opinion? After all, as long as the review is worded with dignity and respect, a negative review can be very constructive to the authors first and foremost and readers.

BTW, I think your negative review of one of the P&P spin-off is so spot on.

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