As you know, I’ve always been an avid reader. Also, I’ve always been pretty opinionated – on all topics but especially what I like and dislike. I’d be happy enough to verbally extol the virtues or dramatise the horrors of a book I’d read, but until I published Between the Lines, I had no idea of the importance of the reviewers.
The friends and family
It’s nerve-wracking, in so many ways I can’t even count, to put your book out there. All these people that I know, like, respect and love trusted me with their £1.99 and a few hours of their time. These are opinions that really count, because they’re opinions I trust. Of course, these are also the most likely opinions to be expressed in a favourable manner. At least out loud to you or in writing on a review site.
Thank you to all my friends and family who have read the book and have taken the time to review it on Amazon or Goodreads!
The blogger and regular reviewers
Is it more or less terrifying to know that people who you don’t know are reading and reviewing your book? In some ways less – these are anonymous people, who you’re never going to run into again so it doesn’t really matter if your book doesn’t float their boat. In other ways more though – because these are anonymous people, but also anonymous people who know books, it feels like their reviews are more honest. They don’t really care if they offend (although they’re still kind of course) and because there’s no risk of them running into you in the street, they can be honest.
Thank you to all those reviewers and bloggers who have taken the time to read the book and review it!
The negative reviewers
To date, I’ve not had anyone say anything particularly unpleasant about the book (ignoring my mum and dad’s helpful reflections!) and so maybe my feelings will be more polarised when that happens, but there’s real value in negative reviewers too. They give you a sense of humility for a start. All the positivity could start to go to your head! They also remind you that not everyone likes everything. That’s impossible – and boring. I know my novel won’t be for everyone and sooner or later, I’ll come across someone who just doesn’t enjoy it. That’s fine. I also think there’s a lot to be said for noticing what the negative reviews pick up – can these be used constructively to help improve the next one? And at the end of the day, even if they didn’t enjoy it, they’ve still invested the same £1.99 and hours of their time.
So thank you too to all those people who’ve read the novel, even if you didn’t enjoy it!
I appreciate every review left, positive or negative, and I’m just overwhelmed by everyone’s support. Keep reviewing and I promise that I’ll be doing as many as I can too!