When you read…

Just a quick post, because I’m curious.

I read a LOT.  And through Goodreads and Amazon, I often review what I read.  So my question to you, what do you base a review on?  Do you avoid giving bad reviews?  (I give bad reviews, but I try to pull something positive from them where I can).   Some things I take into consideration:

1.Genre.  If something I read doesn’t really strike a chord because its maybe young adult, and I feel its targeted to an audience way younger than me, I try to not consider that.  I mention it, sure, but I don’t base a review off it.  A lot of these have young heroines who are into vampires, nail polish, and hair.  I hate that crap, but if its well written, and an engaging story despite that, I give it kudos.  I will say, though, hey people there are OTHER mythological beings besides vampires and werewolves, ok?  It’s getting old.

2. Errors.  Sadly, yeah, I’m a stickler for good spelling and grammar.  I think you should care enough to check your work, and not hope spell-check catches everything.  For me (and not everyone, I understand) a bunch of errors destroys a good story.  I read one recently with some errors so bad I wept:  “murderess” for “murderous”, a “thrown room” (as opposed to “throne”), constant use of “in” for “and”, and “loose” for “lose”, and that’s a tiny sample.  I eventualy figured English wasn’t the author’s first language.  After getting 81% through the book, I finally gave up the struggle, then looked on Goodreads to see that the author was from North Carolina.  Do they not have schools there?  Yes, people make mistakes.  I can overlook a couple.  But when I am so bogged down re-reading sentences because I can’t figure out what they’re saying, it will count heavily in my review, and I’m not likely to read anything by that author again.

3.Drifting tense.  I really hate this.  When I’m reading along and the tense changes right in the middle of the paragraph, I find it jarring.  Example?  She did this.  She felt that.  She was very this and that.  She knows this and does that.  See?  Past tense, then wham, current tense.  Don’t do this.  I might mention it in a review, but unless it switches constantly throughout the whole book, I won’t hold it against you.

4.  Exotic names.  No, I don’t hold this against anyone.  I’m just a little curious why everyone seems to be trying to outdo each other with bizarro names for either sex.  It only bothers me when it’s spelled in a way I can’t figure out how to pronounce.

Support indie authors, though, people!  Yeah, I’ve read some bad stuff, but there is a LOT of really good stuff out there, too, and a lot of it is free!

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