Wednesday, August 05, 2009

From Where Do I Get My Books?

A topic making the rounds on bookblogs right now deals with where bloggers get their review books, whether it is disclosed, and whether it makes any difference. At this point, almost all the books I review (and read)come to me free from publishers, publicists, blog tour groups or authors. At this point I am on so many lists I've had to make a conscious effort to slow my acquisitions because the TBR pile is just plain getting too tall.

Generally speaking, the types of books I'm getting are the types of books I would get from the library absent my current supply system. You don't see me reviewing murder mysteries, classics or thrillers because that's not what I like to read. Does the source make any difference in my review? Only to the extent that it is possible that I'd give a review book more of a chance than a library book. If I say I'll write a review, I'll write one; if I get the book at the library and don't like it, I just put it away. That being said, if I'm going to write a bad review of a book, I'll usually email the person from whom I got the book, warn him or her, and then ask whether they'd rather I do a review or not. I haven't had anyone ask that I not review it, so I try to be gentle but honest. If I can think of some type of person who may better appreciate the book, I'll try to indicate that.

When it is all said and done though, my good reviews outnumber the bad. I like to think that is because I do a good job picking the books I want to read. The main question I ask myself when writing a review is "Did I like this book?" If the answer is basically "yes" then the review is going to be positive. If the answer is "No" then I try to say why.

I realize that as a book blogger I am part of the marketing effort; however I am not an advertising copywriter. I try to support those who send me books; but reading and reviewing books is a hobby, I'm not about to so the work necessary to write ad copy.

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