Tag Archives: book critics

Writing honest book reviews

This weekend, one of the staff over at the New York Journal of Books shared this interesting article about book reviewing with all us reviewers. Apparently, an author was awarded a hefty sum for damages caused by a scathing book review.

The article is a very interesting read and if you have any interest at all in writing, or even reading, book reviews, I recommend you read it.

The piece got me to thinking. Since I write book reviews for both the New York Journal of Books and The Genre Traveler, I have a stake in the liability of book reviewers.

That said, I believe I’ll be O.K. I tend to be a reviewer who respects the humanity of those reviewed. Just because I didn’t find a moment of enjoyment in reading a book, just because reading each successive word felt like forcing my head through Jell-O, doesn’t mean I have to be nasty. It is quite possible that the book would be better suited to a different kind of reader. So, for my The Genre Traveler reviews, I always write from my own personal perspective and include things that both worked and did not work for me. I know that things I didn’t like about a book might be perfectly delightful for another reader.

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