I cannot rave enough about bookstagram and booktok for discovering books I might have missed otherwise. Sometimes the videos include a decent review, but sometimes they don’t. That’s fine. As long as the video gets my attention and interest in the book, I’m happy to go to Goodreads where I can save the book to check out later or add it to my “want to read” list.
Goodreads also has an array of reviews since I like to read at least one from each rating to understand why they are rated so low or high. It also helps me decide if it’s something I want to prioritise or leave for next month. Reading time is precious, so when my schedule is tight, I need to be very picky about what I spend that time on.
However, anyone can review there, which sometimes turns nasty..
I’ve seen a lot of negative reviews on there. I don’t mean negative opinions on the book. I mean outright book-bashing, or worse, bashing the author. It’s tacky and disrespectful to writers. Potential readers want opinions to help them decide whether to read a book or not. They don’t need a bunch of hate-filled descriptions on the book and definitely not the author. I also tend to ignore these and recognise them as someone’s need to rant at the world for their own reasons.
1 and 2-star reviews need some elaboration so readers, and maybe authors, can see why it’s rated so low. But it seems many authors don’t check Goodreads for this very reason.
If I give a book 1 or 2 stars, which is super rare, I tend to keep my thoughts brief and simple and go for the “It just wasn’t my thing” approach since everyone’s taste is different. I would also NEVER bash an author simply because I didn’t like their book.
“I thought the worldbuilding was overly detailed in places, which took me out of the story a bit too often to fully enjoy it.”
Quote from one of my reviews.
This was my polite way of saying the worldbuilding was boring and full of infodumps that made me skim and potentially miss something important. So when reviewing a 1 or 2-star book, please be polite about it. It takes only a few extra words to be nice than to be mean.