Saturday, November 26, 2011
Should A Novelist Write Critical Book Reviews?
I had a book review scheduled to post Friday morning -- but I deleted it. I chickened out at the last minute, because it was a little critical.
I'm thinking, should I be writing critical book reviews? Yes, I'm a reader, but I'm also a writer, and I can't help but see the criticism from the author's perspective. That book is their baby. It took years of blood, sweat and tears to create. I know! I'm thinking that if I were in the author's position, I would rather a blogger not write a review at all, if they must be negative about my baby.
On the other hand, I appreciate and follow blogs that aren't afraid to write critical reviews. The benefits are two-fold -- I learn what they didn't like about a book and can choose to read the book anyway or avoid purchasing it, and I learn what not to do when writing my own novels.
Am I wrong to refrain from posting critical book reviews? Am I chipping away at my credibility with other readers by posting only good book reviews? Authors deal with so much harsh criticism, and I hesitate to contribute to it.
I'm also considering the possibility that the author of the book I've just read might become a writer buddy and supporter of my own work someday... So after weighing the pros and cons, I've decided to stay clear of critical book reviews. I will write honest reviews, but if I must be critical, I'll won't write a review of the book at all.
Have I made the right decision? What are your thoughts on this subject?