A Lil Extra

How Not To Write Book Reviews

I don’t read reviews, so I sure as hell don’t know how to write them. When I started this blog, I wanted to be different and “original” and write essays/posts based on how the books made me feel and my thoughts on the books’ topics in relation to my sense of social justice.

That’s what most of my book posts have been about. I oftentimes don’t write about what the book is about or my thoughts on the quality of the book. If I do, it is very brief. I think people don’t want to read about that. Who am I to tell someone how they will like a book or not? That’s why I don’t read reviews. I want to make my own judgements without having any expectations.

It’s also why I don’t read synopses, but I’m just weird and like to be surprised. I think that started when I went on my first blind date with a book. I’m still judgy on covers, though.

But now I want to sell out and do book reviews. I’m not sure why it feels like selling out. Actually, I think it’s because book reviews can get you paid and that’s what publishers and authors need to sell their books. It’s based on a capitalist foundation of just trying to sell a product.

Or at least that’s what I have reduced it to. I don’t think it has to be this way. I already started my book battle and recommendations lists. Why not beef up my Good Reads profile? I can write reviews that are different! I read this article so I should be ready, right?

WRONG! Who am I kidding? I started writing this entry because I got bored of writing my first formal review. And y’all, it was so bad. I will just resign to the fact I can’t write traditional reviews. It’s too hard!

I’m actually too lazy. Writing reviews are out of my comfort zone. Writing reviews would mean I have to put more work into my reading, work I don’t have the mental bandwidth to dedicate to right now. Right now, the type of reading I do and the type of writing I do give me joy and doesn’t feel like work, which is what I need while trying to work full-time from home during a global pandemic.

I keep trying to figure myself out as a writer and years of insecurity has made me want to turn myself into everyone else. I’m still trying to accept that it’s ok to write like me, whether people like it or not. Getting over that validation from other people is definitely the hardest part, one I will most likely be struggling with for the rest of my life.

And people seem to like reading reviews. Maybe I can naturally get in the rhythm of writing them or find the time to practice writing. For now, you’ll just have to take what you need from me. That’s all I ever ask for!

My rating for book reviews: ✨✨

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