I’ve discussed reviews a few times over the years, and recently I see many new authors struggling to make sense of it all. My best analogy is, take four friends to a movie and you’ll come out with four different opinions. For the most part, that is all reviews are – opinions.
However if you find in a lot of your reviews a similar theme, IE: plot holes, character flaws, grammar issues, then you know those areas are problematic. You need to take them all with a grain of salt, and a learning tool. Use what you need, ignore the rest.
I am going to leave you with two examples here of wildy opposing reviews from a book I recently read that I absolutely fell in love with – AND from one of own books too!
TAKEN FROM AMAZON
Good space drama/character study Wow! This book had me biting my nails to the end. It wasn’t that there was so much action involved (although there were pivotal moments with some action that moved the story along all in a leap). It was more that you grew to care about the characters and were left on the edge of your seat, wondering what was going to happen to them. Would they ever escape their imprisonment? Was there anything out there for them if they did escape? It was so grim in the beginning, I found my mood altering to match Finn’s dark brooding, his wish to keep everyone he cared about safe, his helplessness at being unable to do so. When events occurred, I was puzzled and alarmed and joyful right along with him, the mark of a good story. I’m glad I took this ride.
Cardboard characters Such an interesting idea, so unconvincingly developped. What a pity.
So there you have it, people love it or hate it, or somewhere inbetween it! Give it your all, get an editor, and keep writing! I’d love to see some of your best and worst reviews. Share in the comments and show the world we’re not alone in this crazy journey!