Do you read/write negative book reviews?
Hey! Not every book is going to be a best seller. Not every book is going to be mind-blowing. Not every book is going to be… well… good. I know it’s sad, especially since we want to encourage writers to write, to create new stories, to test the boundaries of our imaginations, but let’s face it: not every book is good.
There are bad books in the world. There are dreadful books in the world. And sometimes there is just no getting around it, especially when they’ve already been published. Those published books are going to find their ways into your hands and you’re gonna read ’em. You can’t not read bad books. The question is: now that you have, what are you gonna do about it?
Writing the bad review
I know some bloggers who refuse to write bad reviews. If they don’t like a book, they put it aside, ignore it, forget about it, and never discuss it with anyone. Why? I’m not sure. Maybe it’s because they only want to provide good books to their readers, to promote good books. Or perhaps they just don’t want to waste their time on a book that they didn’t enjoy. (After all, book reviews can take a while to write, depending on the length, which we discussed last week. :p)
I, on the other hand, kind of… in a sick and twisted way… love… writing bad book reviews. >.> Maybe I’m a horrible person or maybe I’m just insane, but I find a certain sense of enjoyment out of writing a bad book review. Perhaps it’s how I cope with wasting so much time on a horrible book (half of which are ARCs I receive. >.>) Or perhaps it’s a way to purge my system of the bad book.. I dunno. Whatever the case, I actually am more likely to write a bad book review than I am to write a good book review. (Maybe that means I write reviews for myself more than my readers… Oops!)
However, bad book reviews are important for writer growth. If an author reads a bad review of their book (and see a lot of the same thing) maybe they’ll take a hint and improve their writing or get away from a trope. Bad book reviews are also ways for readers to acknowledge what bad trends or cliches are filling the literary world. It helps us recognize what writers need to improve on to continue building wonderful books.
Reading bad reviews
I can’t attest to this (because I’m not much of a book review reader unless I’ve read the book), but how many people actually read bad reviews? Is it an accident when you do? Or do you go through and look at what was bad about the book? Does it depend on whether or not you’ve read the book?
Honestly, despite my love of writing bad book reviews, I can’t ever imagine reading a bad book review. Okay. That’s not true. I would read a bad book review if I disliked the book and I want someone to concur with me. :p (*is really a horrible person* Sorry guys.) Or perhaps I’ll read a bad book review if I liked a book and I’m just like: ‘why didn’t you like this book?’ Still, that’s having read the book. What about people who haven’t read the book? Do they still read bad book reviews? Or do people who have read the book just stay away from bad book reviews?
What do you think about negative book reviews?
Let me know in the comments below!
And check out last week’s discussion:
“Book Review Length“
If you have the time, please fill out my 7-question book review survey!
I’d love your opinions to improve my book reviews for you!