What is Quality Book Reviews?
Quality Book Reviews is an independent blog that is devoted to short reviews of new and forthcoming books. The majority of the reviews are written by Terry South and Marsha Sellers who are voracious and avid readers. Providing reviews to help feed my desires without going broke in the process; the same is true for Marsha.
What kind of books do you review?
All genres and types of books, including new and some older fiction, non-fiction, self-help, but limit poetry and no e-books. Marsha is willing to read some poetry and my daughter Tiffany likes poetry, however, I have never really found the desire to read a great amount of poetry. Tiffany enjoys self-help books especially those surrounding relationships and loves to read children’s books to her boys; Marsha enjoys a wide variety of books and has a special bond with romance; I enjoy a wide variety of books as well with my passion being in adventure, fiction, horror, mystery, crime, true crime, vampire’s and witches are my favorite as well. Both Marsha and myself also enjoy medical books as we are both nurses and have a desire to read almost any books that is nursing or medically related.
When and how often will you be posting reviews?
As often as possible, I would like to eventually try to post a review every couple of days, the sad part is we have had so many reviewers that would request the books and then never perform the review. With everyone’s busy lives we try to fit as many reviews as possible, I would like to make you aware that (for example, Marsha has 9 or so reviews that she just needs to write up and get to me in order for those to be posted here); I am only able to get those reviews posted here once I receive the reviews, and will get posted the same day or next day once received. My husband is also interested in reading and providing reviews, he likes military, science fiction, and action books. So we are adding more reviewers that will be more dependable than most.
How can publicists and others submit books to you for review?
Our submission guidelines, mailing address and email addresses can be found on the Contact Us page.
How long have you been providing this service?
Very recent, I actually started around the middle of February 2007. I have always been an avid reader and have a library full of books myself, but decided this would be something I would like to pursue since I love reading and always like to know what others think about certain titles before I purchase.
How much are you paid for providing all the sites and your forum?
There is no monetary benefit.
Why do you keep changing your layout and look to the site?
I have been trying to find one that is easy to navigate and (for me personally easy to layout, I am computer illiterate).
Why are some of your reviews longer and more detailed than others?
I write reviews for different review companies; each review company has their own individual format and criteria you must follow in order to write reviews for that company. I have found by writing for each of these companies no 2 are alike, each is so very different.
The reviews provided by our other reviewers depends on how detailed they write their review, so the reviews will vary often.
The following are a few examples of the differences:
- format must include authors website
- format must not include authors website
- review must be over 600 words
- review must be between 300 and 400 words
- review must be under 350 words
- review must have a star rating of 1-5
- review must contain no star rating
- review must contain no spoilers or plot line
- review must contain a brief description of the book “which must be taken from the back of the book”
- review must contain a brief description of the book “write your own not to be taken from the back of the book”
- review must not contain any description of errors or mis-spelled wording as these are uncorrected advanced reading copies
All of this can become confusing when writing for several review companies, so be sure to keep copies of each of the companies guidelines and formatting instructions.
Some of the review companies also require a very short review as they have stated that a longer review is not actually read, only the top few sentences and bottom part of long reviews are read. Stating people want to know if the book is good or not and desire no other information.
What is Quality Book Reviews review format?
With QBR we try to perform the type of review requested by the author, if they want a detailed critical review with a rating we try to provide that. If they request a short simple review we try to provide a short simple to the point review. We are getting to the point that we are receiving so many books during the month that we may have to change to one format style and stick to that style and not accommodate everyone’s request as it is a little too much to keep up with.
I am leaning to the shorter review format which is as follows:
Brief Description of the book – What are some of the themes. If a work of fiction, do not give away the plot nor any spoilers.
Review – Is the book engaging? Is it educational? Why? Does the author present a perspective or view of the world that you think is interesting? Give an example. Does anything presented in the book relate to larger issues? What do you think of the style of the writing? Would you recommend the book to others? A few other details to include in the review will vary depending on the genre, characters, and overall writing style.
** I would also like to add on a personal note that if I am interested in reading a certain book I read the blurb about the book and do not read the entire review either, I only want to know what other people thought of the book – did they like it, was it a good story. Everyone’s opinions are different so I look at what several people have said and out of for example 7 reviews if 4 were the book is good and recommended and 3 are the book was not good and is not recommended I make my judgment of the books blurb or brief description. So if I find that it sounds like an interesting book, I go ahead and buy it and read it myself. So I see no need in these long reviews, personally I prefer the one that basically tells me they did or did not like the book and why with a short description of the story contained inside without giving the plot away.
What happens to the books after you review them? Most of our outside reviewers will keep the books. I personally will keep a few to read again later, while others will be donated to charity or given as prizes.
** December 2009, we gave several large boxes of the books to the area hospital as donation to raise money for children’s research, so I would like to thank the publishers and author’s, the books allowed us to read and be entertained then helped a very good cause!
*** I would like to know what everyone else thinks on the subject of a short vs a long review. Lets take a poll here if you would and in the comment section below tell us which review you prefer. After 30 days of receiving responses I will post the results.*** Thank you