I think I need to say something about my book reviews. There are many ways to write a book review and I choose to write a simply review that tells what I liked about a book. I don’t list every character or give a detailed summary of the book; that information is available on all the book sites. I try to give enough information to (hopefully) entice readers to read the book for themselves. So far, I haven’t reviewed books that I don’t like and can’t recommend. I rarely give 5 stars anymore. I decided to save 5 stars for books that are exceptionally well written, with few, if any typos. If my coffee goes cold and I can’t tear myself away to take a bathroom break; that’s 5 stars! 🙂
by Patricia Watts
Another talent the author has is the ability to juggle plots, sub-plots and hold the tension just tight enough to keep the reader turning the page. There is murder, suicide, and attempts on Julia’s life all the way to the end of the book.
I love Julia’s honesty, with herself and others. As a professor, she sets her students to the tough task of deciding where to draw the line with truth and journalism.
The romance was done well also, and didn’t overpower the rest of the story. I always enjoy characters who wrestle with real life moral and ethical questions, as Julia does. Truth, justice, and how they are balanced with topics of journalism and the media, make this book a winner for me.
September 5, 2014 at 4:27 pm
I love the way you do book reviews! Simple and to the point — the way I try to do them. And I don’t give 5 stars very often — it’s got to be just as good as you said it does. There’s a lot of discussion about too many 5-star reviews being given for books that really shouldn’t get 5 stars for a variety of reasons. Makes readers not trust the system after a while. Loved this post and this review.
September 5, 2014 at 7:29 pm
Thank you, Sherrey! I’ve read about too many 5 stars and I agree.We know all books are not 5 star, so it is irritating to see so many on the book sites. Thanks for the compliments and for adding your thoughts.
September 5, 2014 at 4:34 pm
I write book reviews the same way. I figure they can get information about the book in a lot of places, but my opinion about what’s good and what’s not in just one. But reviews never get the kind of response other posts do. Pity, because I really like writing them! I still read both books AND reviews 🙂 And I want your opinion, not a book report.
September 5, 2014 at 7:32 pm
There, you said, it; they are not book reports! I’m not very active online right now, but I am reading, so I figure a review is better than no post at all 🙂 I like yours, so I hope you keep writing them.
September 5, 2014 at 4:58 pm
I enjoy reading your reviews Patti. Plus, they have enticed me to read new books. Watchdogs is now on my to read list. Thank you!
September 5, 2014 at 7:36 pm
That’s great to know, Heather! So glad you enjoy them. The author lives up here in Anchorage and she is a human rights investigator. I’d love to know what that entails. Maybe I’ll track her down for an interview 🙂
September 5, 2014 at 5:22 pm
My kind of review. I don’t need to regurgitate the book blurb.
September 5, 2014 at 7:37 pm
Thanks for chiming in, Pam!
September 5, 2014 at 5:29 pm
You make it appealing, Patti. I don’t want to know what’s in the book either. There is grade inflation, I admit–in universities, high schools, and book reviews. Now that I’m preparing to be on the receiving end of reviews, I’ll be grateful for every star. I usually only review books I love.
September 5, 2014 at 7:40 pm
Well, I can’t wait to read and review your memoir! I’m waiting to order it until I get home. Thanks for the kind words , Elaine.
September 5, 2014 at 7:33 pm
September 5, 2014 at 9:57 pm
The way a good review is written.
xxx Massive Hugs Patti xxx
September 5, 2014 at 11:32 pm
Thanks, David and hugs back!
September 6, 2014 at 12:37 pm
I’m echoing the thoughts of some of your readers, but I do agree – a book review is a critique, an opinion of a book, not a summary.
I have probably been guilty of grade inflation too. Many of the memoirs I read cannot be compared to Lee Martin’s Such a Life or Patricia Hampl’s The Florist’s Daughter, yet I like them and give them 4 or 5 stars because they entertain, inform, or inspire.
September 6, 2014 at 1:56 pm
Thanks for jumping in Marian. I appreciate your honesty and you gave us some great memoir examples too! Like all the rest of us, I’m learning as I go along. Unfortunately, many book reviews are now more popularity contests, than helpful info about the book itself. We can love an author to pieces, but their book needs work or isn’t what we enjoy reading. I want my reviews to entice readers and so I just don’t review books I can’t rave about. Still learning…