Friday, August 9, 2013

Book Blogger Hop ---- what to do when faced with a request

I feel like I've been away from my blog forever .... probably because I haven't had much to say about the books I've been reading.    I haven't participated in Book Blogger Hop for ages and ages .... but the question this time caught my eye, and it's been interesting to read what other bloggers have had to say.

Book Blogger Hop is now generously hosted by Billy at Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer, and this week's question (from Elizabeth at Silver's Reviews) is:   If you don't like a book that you said you would review, do you graciously turn it down and explain why or do you struggle through it and hopefully come up with a half decent review?

I have had this happen in the past, where I accept a request for a review, and then the book just isn't my cup of tea. I usually manage to put together as balanced of a review as I can, but sometimes, I find myself making a list of what I liked and didn't like, so I can make sure I'm being fair.   I realize that every reader might have a different reaction, and just because a book didn't resonate with me when I read it doesn't mean it's a bad book -- it just means that when I read it, it wasn't my kind of book.  

I have had it happen, however, where I can't figure out how to write a review like this --- basically, where I just didn't like the book at all.    When this situation came up, I contacted the publisher who sent it to me and politely explained that I was having a really difficult time with my review, and it wound up that I just didn't post my review, and passed the book along to another reader.   I'd rather be gracious about it, and contact the publisher (or whoever sent it to me) than post a review that really doesn't have balance, or have anything positive to say.

These days, I am very careful about the books I accept for reviews.   Mostly, it's because my time is more limited than it used to be, and I can barely keep up with my own reading for my 2 library book groups, plus the other books I check out.    However, I also don't want to accept a book that I think doesn't sound like my kind of book --- it's a potential waste of my time, but even more importantly, it's a waste of the publisher or author's time if I accept it, and then wind up dragging my heels on a review.   I'd rather a book go to the right reader who's going to enjoy it.

You can see everyone's answers to the Hop question here, on Billy's blog.    


Maria Behar said...

Great answer! I've had this situation pop up sometimes myself, and I totally agree with you.

I have no problem writing a negative review if I bought a book myself, but if I'm participating in a blog tour, and the book I've been sent is something I absolutely can't stand, I'll do what you do -- contact the tour company and let them know. I do feel bad, though, when doing this with one of the tour companies I've signed up with, because they send me printed books. (I refuse to read and review e-books!) But it would be even worse, I think, if the book came directly from the author. There would probably be hurt feelings, then....

It's really good that you try to write balanced reviews of books that you don't even like! I really admire you for that, because I can't do it! If I really dislike a book, I can't be fair and balanced about it.

Thanks for sharing, and Happy Reading!! : )

Karen said...

I've never outright hated a book I've accepted for review yet. I just say what I think - the good and the bad and it's worked out for me so far.

I'm pretty careful now too. I try to accept only books that I'm sure I will like.

Karen @ For What It's Worth

Elizabeth said...

I write to the author and explain why I can't continue. Not enjoying the book is more of a reason for me to not read the book than it is about a review.

GREAT answer.

Happy Hopping!!

Silver's Reviews
My Blog Hop Answer

Dazzling Mage said...

I've had that experience as well. When that happens, I become vague and carefully balance my review to not make it seem too bad.

It's harder to turn it back, I feel, if the book was sent by an author. I'm more careful with books now too.

Great post!

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