Friday, May 31, 2013

Advance Reader Reviews

It occurs to me that most of the reviews I do of the books I get from Netgalley are very positive, and that this might seem a little sketchy.  What you don't see are all the books I get from Netgalley, read two pages of, and groan out loud.  I don't finish them, dear reader, and I can't in good conscience review a book that I read two pages of and said, "My eyes! Get it away!"

So, let me give you a quick no-title run-down of some of my advance reader experiences that I have been sparing you.

  • Girl meets boy, girl loves boy, boy turns out to be AMISH, girl gives up her iPhone to join the Amish people for her boy.  This book used the phrases "that fateful day" and "couldn't imagine a world without him" in the first two pages.  It hurt my eyes, ladies and gentlemen.  In spite of its Amishness, because of the instalove problem, I put it down.
  • A comic book adaptation of a traditional fairy tale turned out to be ALL BREASTS, ALL THE TIME. The images were practically writhing on the page, people.  I had to avert my eyes.
  • Nuns!  I love nuns. I even love nonfiction about nuns. And this one started out good--when did they start convents here?  Who were those first sisters? What did they do, how were they received?  There's a good chapter on that at the beginning.  And then--AND THEN--begins the litany of each chapter that was founded, and where, and who financed it, and which nuns worked there, and whether it ran a school or a hospital.  It was brutally, unforgivingly boring.  It was as bad as that anthropology class in college that was just about teeth.  (Do any of my college friends read this blog?  I'm pretty sure Emily, Kaiva, and Noah were all in that class.  It was the worst class I ever took, bar none.)
So this is what I've given up on lately.  Looking back, though, I can see that I've given some lukewarm reviews, mostly of books I've just about forgotten (The Tragedy Paper, anyone?  One Step Too Far?).  I guess maybe I don't look as biased as I was feeling.  Well, I already wrote the post, so what the heck--we'll leave it here for you.

And I'll add a discussion question; right now, I post reviews  here and on Goodreads.  Should I start reviewing books on Amazon?  That seems like a whole other ball of fish (kettle of wax?), and I'm a little intimidated. I feel like I might want to write tighter reviews for that, and I'm worried about the time commitment.  Anyone have any thoughts?  Anyone?


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