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The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing

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  • Posted October 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    How to Write Great Book Reviews

    THE SLIPPERY ART OF BOOK REVIEWING
    Mayra Calvani and Anne K. Edwards


    Have you ever wanted to write a review for a book you read, but weren't quite sure where to start or what to say? Or maybe you've written reviews but weren't satisfied with the way they turned out.

    If you answered yes to either or both of the above, then check out The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing by authors and reviewers Mayra Calvani and Anne E. Edwards. Their book points both experienced and prospective reviewers in the right direction to help write the best reviews possible. The authors divide the book into three parts. They also provide a table of contents and an index to make it easy to find exactly the topic the reader is looking for.

    Part one starts with "The Five Keys to Being a Good Reviewer." The authors continue with an explanation of what a book review is and the results of the review for the reader, author, publisher, booksellers, librarians, and the world. Another section discusses the importance of reading critically and gives points to consider as you read the book, for both fiction and nonfiction. If audio books and graphic novels are your preference, the authors talk about them as well. From the different types of reviews to signs of what makes an amateur reviewer to starting your own book review site and much more, Ms. Calvani and Ms. Edwards give the reader expert advice on how to write a book review. I used their information on reviewing nonfiction books to help me write this review.

    Part two discuses the influence of book reviews. Have you ever stopped to think that your review might sway a bookseller or librarian in their choice of titles to purchase? That's an awesome responsibility, which shows how important your review is. The authors say: "Reviews play an important part on whether or not a person buys a book; a positive review tells the reader that the money they will spend on that book is worth it, while a negative review will do the opposite and may influence the person into not buying the book." This is one reason that your reviews must be honest.

    Part three lists resources, such as review sites, online communities, print publications, and so much more. I know I'll be looking into some of these to find more places to post my reviews. The authors clearly have done their research, with quotes from many of their sources. They also give examples of reviews that I found very helpful. I haven't covered nearly all the information this book provides, but you'll find that it answers just about any question you might have. I highly recommend The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing for everyone who aspires to review books, as well as to readers who might like to host reviewers on their blogs or who simply enjoy reading good nonfiction books. The authors sum it up pretty nicely, I think: "Once you've decided to try reviewing, relax and enjoy the experience. There's nothing else quite like it."
    What more can I say?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    good book about how to write book reviews

    What is this? Here I am, a book reviewer, reviewing a book about how do to book reviews! Mayra Calvani is a multi-genre author and reviewer. Anne K. Edwards is a mystery writer. Each one is also the editor of a newsletter and/or ezine related to writing, so they know whereof they speak. This book is in three parts. Part One, "The Art of Reviewing," explains five keys to being a good reviewer, how to read critically, how to write a book review, how to rate books, the different types of reviews, the signs of an amateur reviewer, and other information related to writing book reviews. Part Two, "The Influence of Book Reviews." discusses how book reviews influence libraries, bookstores, publishers, authors, publicists, book clubs, and readers. Part Three, "Resources," gives hints on how and where to get start posting reviews with contact information for both print review publications and online review sites of all genres.
    The main point that Calvani and Edwards try to get across is that a reviewer must be as objective as possible and fair. Like any other "how to" book, there may be some suggestions that will not necessarily apply in every situation, but in general this book provides good advice that will be useful for both beginning reviewers and those who are veterans at reviewing. Why would I review such a book for Stories for Children Magazine? Some of the young people reading the reviews here to find books that they might want to read may decide, later in life or even now, to start doing their own book reviews for publication, and they will find a lot of helpful material in this book. As for me, I feel that one is never too old to learn and grow, so I certainly appreciate the opportunity of being able to read and review the book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted November 17, 2010

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    Posted June 24, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2009

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