News alert: I don’t review every book I read. This statement may or may not surprise you, but the fact is that I simply don’t review every book I have read. A recent conversation about the expectations of book bloggers got me thinking about all of the times I have accepted a book for consideration or added one on Goodreads but didn’t review it. There are plenty of reasons for this, ranging from time constraints to author behavior, but if I were to review every book I read, I would have to give up what little personal life I have left. So, here 7 reasons why I may not have reviewed your book:
1. I don’t have anything to say. Not every book lends itself to discussion. There are several reasons for this – it was short, it was formulaic, or because there is just so much to say that it’s hard to narrow it down into a cohesive review (The Brothers Karamazov is a great example). It doesn’t mean I don’t like the book, but then again sometimes it does. The point is, not every book inspires me to write about it and so rather than faking it, I simply don’t review it.
2. I didn’t like the book. I try to keep The Book Wheel positive, so sometimes I abstain from reviewing a book because I didn’t like it. Generally speaking, I’ll review a book that I didn’t love if I can articulate why I didn’t like it and offer up which audience(s) will like it, but some books are just plain not to my liking. I know that writing a book is a lot of hard work and takes a good bit of bravery on the author’s part and I don’t want to rain on someone’s parade, meaning if I truly didn’t like a book and can’t find any redeeming qualities in it, I’ll pass.#Authors: Here are 7 reasons I didn't review your #book: Click To Tweet
3. The author is annoying. Usually when I accept a book, I have accepted it for review consideration. This means that I may or may not read it but I will do my best to do so. Unfortunately, there have been times when I have been hounded by an author for a review over and over again. I don’t mean a follow-up or two, I mean a twice-weekly email about when I will review it, why I haven’t reviewed it, and being told that I was given this book for consideration and that I’d better read it because that’s my job. Although this annoying, it’s not what makes me skip the review. What makes me skip the review is that, even if the book is good, I don’t want to review it and subject other bloggers to the same type of treatment.
4. I already have enough reviews. I blog about non-bookish things, too, and I try to stick to a schedule. Reviews on Monday, lifestyle on Wednesday, and a list or discussion on Friday. If I’m immersed in a bunch of great books that I want to review, I’ll add them in, but for the most part I try to keep it regular. So, if a book is only so-so or if I only have a little bit to say, I may skip it or give it a mini-review. I will still review it on Goodreads, but not on my blog.Bloggers: Do you review every book you read? Why or why not? Click To Tweet
5. I don’t have time. Blogging is not my job, it’s a hobby. That means that I’m not getting paid to read and no one is paying me to write the reviews. So when life gets busy, blogging may have to take a backseat. I have yet to take an official break in the three years I’ve been blogging, but time constraints have certainly limited my time on the Internet. This is why I have the schedule mentioned above and sticking to it keeps me sane and keeps The Book Wheel running as smoothly as possible.
6. I strive for quality not quantity. I could review every book – the good, the bad, and the ugly. But as I mentioned earlier, I know that writing a book requires a lot of time and effort on the author’s part and I’m not here to diminish their efforts. That said, I try to only write reviews of books about which I truly have something to say. It’s a waste of both my time and the reader’s time to expend energy on a review that says nothing at all and I’d rather strive for quality, not quantity. That’s not to say that others can’t handle the workload – plenty of bloggers manage to read 5 books a week – but I am not one of them and I don’t pretend to be.
7. A combination of the above. Sometimes there’s no one reason for why I choose not to review a book. Maybe the author is slightly overbearing and I don’t have much to say about the book. Or maybe I have a little bit to say but not enough time to formulate a decent review. Either way, it’s my choice.