Why I think Negative Reviews Are Important

I recently saw a post about negative reviews and why the reviewer doesn’t give them. How it might lead to an awkward interaction with said author further down the line. A reviewer commented that they wouldn’t review anything they DNFd. On the whole negative review thing I have a couple of opinons:

Negative Reviews Shouldn’t be taken Personally

I’d argue that we need to stop taking negative reviews so… negatively? They shouldn’t be a personal attack of the author or they’re writing. They’re not school play ground stuff, they should focus on the book and why it didn’t work for that reviewer. They can offer up constructive criticism and should dampen the blow a bit with the odd positive thought because even if it’s just the cover or a character’s name there will have been a reason you picked up that book.

A book can’t please everyone. We’re all different and unique and even the most popular authors won’t make everyone happy. So if you’re a reviewer and in the niche situation where you stumble over an author at an event and they ask if you liked their book, just say it wasn’t for you.

I’m not saying seek out the author or tag them in your negative reviews, they don’t need your opinion. But the prospect of them asking your opinions shouldn’t put you off reviewing, just do it in the right way.

Negative Reviews Stop Readers getting into Slumps

We all know it only takes one tiring book to slow down our reading progress. To grind our interest to a halt, to switch us from grabbing our book at every opportunity to somewhat putting it off….

I can’t speak for everyone but the blogs I read religiously have bloggers who read similar things to me. Sometimes I’ll even see what they thought of a book I’ve already read to see if they’re opinion can be trusted for me personally.

Everyone is different, of course, even the most similar of readers will have the odd different opinions. But if a blogger I follow didn’t enjoy a book I probably wouldn’t. Therefore, by giving a negative review, a blogger is saying this book isn’t right for their following, not that this book is rubbish.

Reviewing books you DNFd

This is a tough one. On one hand telling your followers you didn’t enjoy a book is important but how can you judge a book when you didn’t finish it? It might redeem itself.

I’d say this all depends on the reviewer. It depends on how far you get through it and what things you didn’t like about it- are they even redeemable? It’s a personal line to draw on a book by book basis. However I like it when a reviewer points out they never finished the book. Just as a reference.

So there you have it. My thoughts on negative reviews. Obviously this is just my opinon, I’m not going to judge if you feel differently but would love to hear your opinions! I’m sure we all run our negative reviews differently, so what about you?