My reviews, an explanation

Current Theme Song (aka what's playing on my ipod right now): Heartbeats by José González.

If you happen to Look back over the weekend at my review of Dragonfly by Julia Golding you may think that I almost didn't like the book because of my comments. That isn't true.

My reviews are a bit different than many blogs. My goal is to feature great books that have been lost to obscurity. I want people to find these treasures and grow in whatever way they do when they read a story. But the key word there is great. A bad obscure book can doesn't need to be brought to attention.

So that is why I have set such strict guidelines for myself, such as "I will not review any book within the top 25,000 best-selling, according to amazon ranks." This has been hard on me a couple of times (who am I kidding? It's hard almost anytime I find I book). That is why you won't find a review for Silver Phoenix by Cindy Pon on here, even though I have interviewed her. There are many others that you may have loved that I incidentally love just as much. But you already know about them.

I also do not give stars on my reviews. While easy to glance at, I really feel that such a system is too vague to ever adequately describe a book. So I discuss what I loved and why, as well as what didn't fit well with me and why. Then you can judge for yourself if it is worth reading. Of course it is all opinion. That's why I call it "My Take." :)

Every review here I wholeheartedly recommend. (This is also another reason why my reviews are few and far between. I read many excellent books that just don't quite make the cut). Now and then I have more gripes with certain books than others, but my goal is to be completely upfront and honest. If a villain is flat, I will tell you. That is the most important thing about any of my reviews. I will be honest with you, I can promise that.

And there are some amazing books I simply cannot review because they are so popular already *cough cough The Graveyard Book! Shannon Hale! Nancy Farmer! Mistborn Trilogy! Suzanne Collins! cough cough* Trust me, I cry (more than a little inside) because I cannot review them.

But that is not my purpose. My purpose is to bring to light great fiction that has fallen by the wayside. I look around and pick them up and dust them off (usually causing a severe coughing fit on my part). I am WriterGirl. This is what I do.


Frankie Diane Mallis said...

Hey Heather, so I don't have a favorite song yet Im so in love but only have the Ghost of a Rose album. My favorites are Cartouche, Loreley, Ghost of a Rose, Diamond and Rust- gaaaah they're all amazing! I'm going to download the other albums soon!

Jazz said...

I admire your guidelines and resolve. Speaking of Nancy Farmer, I am halfway through The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm. It's very interesting, but I'm not sure if I like the book yet.

PJ Hoover said...

I think you're doing great job with your reviews!

Shannon Messenger said...

I admire and applaud your review policy. As someone who is fairly uncomfortable writing reviews, I admire anyone who puts a lot of time and effort into them (instead of slapping them out) and who holds themselves to high standards. Well done you!

Heather Zundel said...

Frankie - Do. I haven't found a bad one yet.

Jazz - Thank you Jazz. That means a lot. Actually, The Ear, The Eye, and The Arm is one of her few books I HAVEN'T read. I was thinking more of House of the Scorpion and The Sea of Trolls, depending if sci-fi or fantasy is your cup of tea. Tell me if that one is good.

PJ - Thank you!

Shannon - Thank you as well Shannon. I really appreciate it.

Sweet Vernal Zephyr said...

I agree with your mission, I also agree with your lack of stars. A current five star book may pale in comparison to a future five star book...

Heather Zundel said...

Sweet Vernal Zephyr - So so true. It's great to see new faces by the way! :D