How I Review Books

Thursday, 23 April 2015

How I Review Books

Reviews... THE THINGS THAT TAKE OVER MY LIFE EACH AND EVERY SINGLE DAY. Okay, yes, it's absolutely 100% true, but am I truly complaining? 

They're the best things to write, as I get to: rave, rant and repeat. LUUUL! It's the truth, and I think 90% of my posts on this blog are actual reviews. So here's to the evolution of my reviews and how I started off writing them to now.

In March 2013, I opened this blog and my first actual review turned out to be: City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare. Man, THAT'S MY FAVOURITE SERIES! So here's a screenshot of my review, and let me tell you that it was horrible and bland and... I can tell you that I was a lazy twelve year old.

A Goodreads summary longer than my review? No information about the book? A dumb ending to my post? Ugly colours? Random thoughts of the authors other books? WTF IS THIS DISGUSTING GARBAGE?!!! *RANTS* I seriously would want to delete all of my garbage reviews, but then I have no time to re-write them, and it'd just look weird if I didn't have anything in my 2013 archive. So please, please do not go on to my 2013 garbage and read it and try to make fun of me. You suck, if you do. *laughs* This was horrible, seriously.

And going into 2014, I guess I can say that I wrote so many posts, and I'd just add them into my blog WITHOUT SCHEDULING. And then of course, people would only comment on my recent post. *laughs* My, wasn't I an idiotic thirteen year old? Here, take a look at the number of posts that I added:

And here's a photo of one of the garbage reviews that I wrote in January of 2014:

BULLET POINTS? 2 OF THEM? WHAT THE HELL? I'm sorry people, but this was horrible. The formatting wasn't that bad for a 13 year old, but the review was nonsense. I can't believe that I added this stuff onto Goodreads.

And here's a photo of a pretty nice review I wrote in December of 2014: (WHAT A COMPARISON)

Or at least, the beginning of the review since I then had a better mind and grew on my reviews, used gifs and had blockquotes and everything. And now, things are even better.

So what does this evolution tell me? My thoughts, organization and writing skills have improved like hell. It's not a joke, looking back at my younger years and feel embarrassed of all of the things I used to post on this out of utter forcing, and the way I see things now. I'm 100x more organized now, I schedule posts, and I read amazing books that others haven't yet because of ARCs.

So how do I review these wonderful pieces of literature? Here's the breakdown, where I can use bullet points since it seems right:

  • With ARCs, I usually review the book as soon as I read it unless the publisher states otherwise. I find that this is a question many bloggers get, and I just do it ASAP.
  • There have been times where I had 20 books to review, and the stress literally captured me and threw me into a dungeon of books. I wanted to read, but I had to review. Know what I mean?
  • I usually catch some quotes when I read a book, so once I'm done the book, I set it by my computer so I can grab the quotes while I review. Seems right.
  • I usually start my reviews with the format that I normally use (cover, Goodreads link, title, author, genre, publication date, page #, format, source and rating with Goodreads summary) and then go on to beginning my thoughts
  • Then, I go with a bolded statement with a quick recap of my thoughts at the start, like a thesis.
  • I just then go with the flow. I make sure that I talk about the plot, the writing style, concept/meaning/themes, characters, romance (if any), ending and the emotions that I feel.
  • I find that it really depends on the book, so if there's a specific genre, I take the review in a whole other direction
  • I make sure to use at least 2 gifs, and if it's an ARC, I use a statement that I received the book from the publisher for a honest review, or whatsoever.
  • I end off with a question for the readers, and my 'Love, Michelle' ending

How do you review your books? Have your reviews gone through
an evolution, like mine have?


  1. I started a blog partly so I could talk about movies and other stuff. My reviews have had a bunch of little changes over time. Most of the evolution in my posts was for the rants and the spiritual stuff.

    And don't feel too bad about your crappy old posts. There are a few of mine I want to go back and rewrite, or just delete (and I have done both).

    1. I honestly love writing movie reviews, especially when the movie is a book adaptation. Those always end up close to my heart! :) Haha, thanks! It's so weird to look back at them and try to smile when we all know that those were our gross amateur times. ;D

  2. Haha, I understand exactly you feel! I did not know how the heck to write a review when I first started and made the dumb mistake to not look on any other blogs... Now when I look back to my first, it's just a list of things I wrote and elaborated within a sentence. Ugh, I never want to go back there....

    ~Kaitlin @ Next Page Please!

    1. EXACTLY! I was so lost, and thankfully the A-Z Challenge that I did in April 2013 brought me to get to know more bloggers who helped me out in so many situations. I probably would've been so much farther back in my blogging life if I hadn't met them! LOL, SAME! *throws memories back to garbage*


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