TURNING THE TABLES: REVIEWER INTERVIEW
Why did you become a reviewer?
I happen to be going through some of my favorite review sites one evening searching for information on books I was thinking of purchasing when I saw the “Help Wanted” sign on the blog. After reading some of the reviews that others put out there, I thought to myself, ‘I can do this. I love to read and I can write.’ I sent the email to the blog owner and the rest is history.
What are your top 3 favorite pairings? (m/m, m/f/m, m/f, m/m/m,etc.)
M/M is definitely the top. M/M/M and then M/F or Ménage, but I love them to be erotic.
What are your top 3 favorite genres? (paranormal, contemporary, fantasy, sci-fi, etc.)
Paranormal, BDSM, Fantasy
How do authors benefit from reviews?
I think reviewers can actually help an author, if the review is written well. If a reviewer can appeal to an audience then others are apt to look into the book and purchase it.
In your opinion, what makes a book worth a 5 Star review?
A 5-Star book has it all; drama, angst, love, lust and great sex (if that is appropriate for the genre of the book). I want depth of characters, an emotional connection not only with the other characters but with the reader as well. I need to be involved in the story, anxiously waiting for “the shoe to drop” or the “lovin’ to begin”. Either way, I need to find attachment.
I also want a fabulous plot, where the drama unfolds, keeping me on the edge.
Of course, I know I already mentioned the sex, but….great sex is always a plus! Descriptive sex! Lusty sex!
Did I mention sex?
As a reviewer, what in a book will cause you to lower the rating?
I need the story to make sense and not be all over the place. As a reader, I should not need a graphic organizer to follow the plot or characters (okay maybe that is the teacher coming out in me). I also want to the plot to flow. If it is a sequel or series, mention the people from the other books, don’t forget about them. I want to know that all the characters matter. I also like the book to be slightly fast paced and not drag, with no end in sight. Sometimes shorter is better and can pack a punch.
No false advertising. Don’t write one thing in the blurb to suck me in and then the book takes a completely different spin. Keep the writing clean and crisp.
Some new authors have a hard time getting reviews. Do you have any advice for them?
Word of mouth is a great way to find reviewers, especially if the reviewers are also new. The reviewer wants exposure just as much as the author. Search through your favorite review sites and see if they take new authors. If not, don’t be shy about e-mailing them to see if they can lead you in the right direction to find someone to review your books.
Would you ever tell readers not to purchase a book? Why or why not?
I would never tell a reader not to buy a book. First of all, that is someone’s livelihood and who am I to interfere with that? Secondly, my like or dislike of a book is a personal opinion. Sure, I have read some bad books out there, but I would never put in print don’t buy the book. If someone asked me personally, I don’t know what the answer would be.
Is there a difference between a bad review and a negative review? Can you elaborate?
Yes, absolutely! I think a bad review fallS on the reviewer. The reviewer has no idea what he or she is talking about and tries to give an opinion about the book. I even know of some reviewers who have never read the book or ask their friends and then try to write the review. You can’t write a review without truly reading the book and dissecting what the message the author was trying to convey.
A negative review, to me, is when the reviewer bashes the book. Whether the reviewer doesn’t like the plot or the style of writing, the reviewer gives a negative review. Here is where personal opinion comes in. I don’t necessarily like every book that I review but I think it is my job to be respectful of the author when giving the review. What interests me may not be of interest to others or vice versa. A reviewer can get the point across that the book was not well developed tactfully and subtly. Sometimes saying less is more powerful.
Is there ever a time an author should defend him/herself against a harsh or inaccurate review? Or should they just ignore it?
Normally I would say ignore it…as I said in the previous answer, it may not be their cup of tea, but if it isn’t then give a generic review instead of negatively criticizing the book. I do not think it is a reviewers place to attack the author personally, which I have seen. I read a review once where the reviewer was pissed because of the anal sex in the book. I wanted to shout, “hey dumb ass, did you miss the memo that it was M/M”?
As an author I would have jumped all over that, but I guess sometime you have to take the high road. At least that is what my mama has always taught me.
All authors want their books to be liked, as least in my humble opinion.
How can authors request a review from you?
Come on over to my blog or email me for a request. If it fits the theme of the blog, I would love to review your book!