Book reviews are like gold dust to authors, particularly to unknown authors. They are so important to me that I dedicated a whole page at the back of my latest book (EATS) practically begging for readers to review it AND I gave away several FREE copies of the book, paying for the postage and everything. I am always hungry for reviews, looking for ways to increase my review numbers on Goodreads and Amazon and I appeal to you all now, reading these words - go review the book you have just read, it really makes a difference.
Nothing on this Earth will make you want to read a book other than someone you know (who has the same taste as you) raving about it. No point raving about David Walliams or Roald Dahl, rave about an unknown, rave about a book that needs a push, a little helping hand. Rave about my books, *winks, but means it really*!
It’s not just about doing a good turn for an author, giving them a tip, like the hardworking waiting staff they are, it is also the ‘feel good factor’. It’s free, costs you nothing, but a little time and the benefits to the author are incredible. What a rush it is to feel you’ve helped. The star ratings on Amazon and Goodreads really work - it’s something about algorithms that’s beyond me, but it makes a big difference. It also helps to get good books into the hands of children who might otherwise be reluctant readers, boosting children’s literacy, now we’re all for that, right? The other benefit is if you’re an author and you review books, other authors will review yours. One good turn… blah blah.
You don’t need to write reams - in fact, definitely don’t write reams. Leave that to book bloggers. Write a paragraph or two, write a sentence, just write: Great! but give it some stars. I review every book I like (I only write negative reviews if the book is already massively successful or I have been asked to write a review and I always warn the author first), or I ask my children for their thoughts. You can read my reviews on Goodreads if you like: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/50098246-camilla-chester?sort=review&view=reviews. I don’t review on my website blog, but I do post up what I am reading now and again.