Free Fiction Friday #43

Hello ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to Free Fiction Friday #43! For those of you who are new to this blog or who may have missed out on the previous Free Fiction Fridays, every Friday (okay, almost every Friday—I try), I post an article containing 10 fiction e-books that are 100% FREE on Amazon at the time of posting and an addition 5 that are roughly of the same genre and on sale for less than $5. I try my best to make sure they are all 4+ stars with over 40+ reviews and 100 pages minimum if I can (it isn’t always possible)—so that you can get a list of the best-of-the-best to choose from and enjoy over the long weekend (while I do more important things than post, like laundry.) I try to switch up the genres every week, and this week our theme is: Dystopian! Enjoy!

Note: Currently The Legacy Human by Susan Kaye Quinn (down there in the bargains section) is available in a GoodReads Giveaway HERE if you’d like to give it a shot.

THE FREE

fff-exodusfff-day soldiersfff-anywhere but herefff-war childfff-the curefff-landfff-the eden plaguefff-after the curePrintfff-devoured

THE BARGAINS

bargain-reconbargain-slow burn box setbargain-the walls of lemuriabargain-extinction horizonbargain-the legacy human

Free Fiction Friday #36

Hello ladies and gentlemen of blogland and welcome to Free Fiction Friday #36! For those of you who are new to this blog or who may have missed out on the previous Free Fiction Fridays: Every Friday (okay, almost every Friday—I try) I post an article containing 10 fiction e-books that are 100% FREE on Amazon at the time of posting (and an additional 5 that are roughly of the same genre and on sale for less than $5). I try my best to make sure they are all 4+ stars with over 40+ reviews and 100 pages minimum if I can (it isn’t always possible)—so that you can get a list of the best-of-the-best to choose from and enjoy over the long weekend (while I do more important things than post… like laundry). I try to switch up the genres every week, and this week our theme is: YA Historical & Time Travel! Enjoy!

THE FREE

FFF36-the lens and the lookerFFF36-clockwisePageflex Persona [document: PRS0000030_00002]FFF36-scarletteFFF36-phantoms in philadelphiaFFF36-the silent dealFFF36-jars of clayFFF36-the candle starFFF36-the jailer's sonFFF36-the lamp of darkness

THE BARGAINS

FFF36bargain-wiredFFF36bargain-a time to reapFFF36bargain-flickerFFF36bargain-carnelianFFF36bargain-gates of thread and stone

In The Mail #15

DSCN0337

It’s been awhile since I’ve done an In The Mail article—but I can’t put it off any longer. I’ve gotten so many books in the mail lately that I felt the need to share before the number of books on my In The Mail bookcase is so large that I can’t fit all the new literature in one photo. (Okay, I’ll admit, it still barely fit. I should have done this ages ago).

As you can see by my bookshelf in disarray to the left hand side of your screen… I’m not big on organizing my bookshelf. The closest it gets is a card, bookmark, or postcard inserted between the half I’ve already read and reviewed, and the half that are still just sitting pretty in my To Be Read pile. (If you look really closely, you can in fact, see said postcard). Obviously, the amount of books I’ve received lately has been quite dramatic.

Yes, I do realize that my shelf looks relatively barren compared to some people’s. There’s a good reason for that, I promise: Most of my library consists of e-books. 22,000 of them to be exact. Actually, I went through my physical-book library just a few weeks ago, weeded out four boxes full of books that I already had e-book copies of, and donated them to my local library. The few I saved were these ones—mostly because a great number of them are marked Advanced Readers Proof, ARC Copy, or they are signed by the author. I just can’t bear to part with them.

So, to return to the subject at hand, I present you with a list of the books I’ve gotten in my mail lately—complete with pictures, because… why not? Also, just as a side note: Taking pictures of books when you have a curious cat is pretty hard to do. I had to cut my cat Bella out of several pictures.

 

DSCN0338

The Secrets of Midwives by Sally Hepworth

THE SECRETS OF MIDWIVES tells the story of three generations of women devoted to delivering new life into the world—and the secrets they keep that threaten to change their own lives forever. Neva Bradley, a third-generation midwife, is determined to keep the details surrounding her own pregnancy—including the identity of the baby’s father— hidden from her family and co-workers for as long as possible. Her mother, Grace, finds it impossible to let this secret rest. For Floss, Neva’s grandmother and a retired midwife, Neva’s situation thrusts her back 60 years in time to a secret that eerily mirrors her granddaughter’s—a secret which, if revealed, will have life-changing consequences for them all. Will these women reveal their secrets and deal with the inevitable consequences? Or are some secrets best kept hidden?

[Won in a Goodreads Giveaway.]

DSCN0339From What I Remember by Stacy Kramer & Valerie Thomas

KYLIE: Mexico? What a nightmare! I should be putting the finishing touches on my valedictorian speech. Graduation is TODAY! Wait! Is this a wedding band on my finger??

MAX: It started with Kylie’s laptop and a truck full of stolen electronics and it ended in Ensenada. It was hot, the way she broke us out like some chick in an action movie. But now we’re stranded here, with less than twenty-four hours before graduation.

WILL: Saving Kylie Flores from herself is kind of a full-time occupation. Luckily, I, Will Bixby, was born for the job. And when I found out she was stuck in Mexico with dreamy Max Langston, sure, I agreed to bring their passports across the border but there’s no reason to rush back home right away. This party is just getting started.

LILY: This cannot be happening. It’s like some cruel joke. Or a bad dream. I close my eyes and when I reopen them, they’re still there. Max and Kylie Flores, freak of the century. In bed together. If Kylie thinks I’m giving him up without a fight, she’s dead wrong.

[Obtained as a giveaway from a friendly local librarian.]

DSCN0340

Cinders & Sapphires by Leila Rasheed

Rose Cliffe has never met a young lady like her new mistress. Clever, rich, and beautiful, Ada Averley treats Rose as an equal. And Rose could use a friend. Especially now that she, at barely sixteen, has risen to the position of ladies’ maid. Rose knows she should be grateful to have a place at a house like Somerton. Still, she can’t help but wonder what her life might have been had she been born a lady, like Ada.

For the first time in a decade, the Averleys have returned to Somerton, their majestic ancestral estate. But terrible scandal has followed Ada’s beloved father all the way from India. Now Ada finds herself torn between her own happiness and her family’s honor. Only she has the power to restore the Averley name-but it would mean giving up her one true love … someone she could never persuade her father to accept.

Sumptuous and enticing, the first novel in the At Somerton series introduces two worlds, utterly different yet entangled, where ruthless ambition, forbidden attraction, and unspoken dreams are hidden behind dutiful smiles and glittering jewels. All those secrets are waiting … at Somerton.

[Obtained as a giveaway from a friendly local librarian.]

DSCN0341Villain Keeper by Laurie McKay

Unexpected magic, villainous teachers, and dragons in disguise await readers in the first book of a delightful new tween adventure series by debut author Laurie McKay.

All his life, Prince Caden has dreamed of being sent on a quest to slay a dragon. But before he has the chance, he is ripped from his home in the Winterlands of Razzon and finds himself in Asheville, North Carolina—a land with no magic and no dragons. But a prince must always complete his quest. And the longer Caden is in Asheville, the more he realizes there is magic in this strange land after all. More important, there may just be dragons here, too. But what if Caden’s destiny isn’t to slay a dragon, like he’s always believed?

Fans of Soman Chainani’s The School for Good and Evil and Chris Colfer’s: The Land of Stories will be transported by this first book in an epic new series for middle grade readers about a brave young prince’s quest to find answers, honor, friendship—and what it really means to be a hero.

[Won in a Goodreads Giveaway.]

DSCN0343The Acolytes of Crane by J.D. Tew

Theodore Crane finds solace in goofy everyday pranks, in order to cope with living under the shadow of an abusive father and dealing with a belligerent bully who seeks him out at school.

One day, intervention from outer space strikes as a mysterious amulet soars into his room bearing enigmatic clues.
This causes Theodore to question everything about the universe, and the answer comes in the form of two battling intergalactic warlords who, unknown to Theodore, have been analyzing him all his life, fearing that he can unlock the secret to their defeat and demise. But this curiosity over Theodore comes at a price, for many people.

To protect his loved ones, and to avenge what has torn his family apart, Theodore must leave Earth. He is given just fourteen days to assemble a team of trustworthy friends and then convince each one to go with him on this dangerous mission.
The Acolytes of Crane is two parts; a coming-of-age story that delights us when it turns into a blast ’em, rock ’em space odyssey. In the words of one reviewer, it’s “something like Sandlot to more like Ender’s Game.”

[Won in a Goodreads Giveaway.]

DSCN0342The Ghost of Sephera by J.D. Tew

Having left his innocuous childhood on Earth behind for the adventures of outer space, Theodore Crane now thrusts himself into desolate conditions, vowing to find two valued members of his crew that were lost in battle. Despite Theodore’s prior victories, the war between two all-powerful demigods rages. Yet the despotic Zane continues to stalk Theodore and his crew, believing that they will one day meet again.

After falling into a state of disarray from the perils of this war, the Opposition must retrench in order to rid the universe of the two demigods who threaten the freedom of the Galaxy. Somehow, Theodore must help the Opposition’s freedom fighters–and give them hope.

Along his journey, Theodore and his crew learn of an all-powerful omnipotent mainframe, Eppa. Records of her existence suggest that she knows everything and sees everything. If Theodore can find Eppa, he may determine the outcome of the Galaxy.

[Won in a Goodreads Giveaway.]

DSCN0344I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios

If seventeen-year-old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straightedge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.

Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.

[Won in a giveaway from Fierce Reads]

DSCN0345The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick

A bold, genre-bending epic that chronicles madness, obsession, and creation, from the Paleolithic era through the Witch Hunts and into the space-bound future.

Four linked stories boldly chronicle madness, obsession, and creation through the ages. Beginning with the cave-drawings of a young girl on the brink of creating the earliest form of writing, Sedgwick traverses history, plunging into the seventeenth century witch hunts and a 1920s insane asylum where a mad poet’s obsession with spirals seems to be about to unhinge the world of the doctor trying to save him. Sedgwick moves beyond the boundaries of historical fiction and into the future in the book’s final section, set upon a spaceship voyaging to settle another world for the first time. Merging Sedgwick’s gift for suspense with science- and historical-fiction, Ghosts of Heaven is a tale is worthy of intense obsession.

[Won in a giveaway from Fierce Reads]

DSCN0346To Whatever End by Claire Frank

The thriving kingdom of Halthas was founded by Wielders and Shapers: people who can manipulate either energy or matter. Cecily’s noble birth and strong Wielding ability made her a favorite of the king, until she and her husband Daro were caught up in the war that saw him deposed. Although they were hailed as heroes and a new king sits on the throne, Cecily and Daro chose to leave the politics of the Halthain court for a peaceful life, far outside the city.

Their quiet retirement is interrupted by an unexpected attack, leaving Daro captive and Cecily injured after a narrow escape. With no trail to follow and few clues, Cecily desperately tracks rumors of a madman who is trying to bend the laws of Wielding magic. The subjects of his human experiments rarely survive with their sanity, if they survive at all.

Only their bonded soul assures Cecily that Daro is still alive – but for how much longer and in what condition, she can’t tell. Her best hope is to gather old friends, try to repair the bridges she burned when she left her old life, and muster every resource to find her husband. No sacrifice is too great to bring Daro back, if his mind isn’t already gone.

[Won in a Goodreads Giveaway.]

DSCN0347Son of the Mob by Gordon Korman

Vince Luca is just like any other high school guy. His best friend, Alex, is trying to score vicariously through him; his brother is a giant pain; and his father keeps bugging him to get motivated. There is just one thing that really sets him apart for other kids… his father happens to be the head of a powerful crime organization. Needless to say, while Vince’s family’s connections can be handy for certain things-like when teachers are afraid to give him a bad grade as they can put a serious crimp in his dating life. How is he supposed to explain to a girl what his father does for a living? But when Vince finally meets one who seems to be worth the trouble, her family turns out to be the biggest problem of all. Because her father is an FBI agent-the one who wants to put his father away for good.

[Obtained as a giveaway from a friendly local librarian.]

DSCN0348The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark

Maddy Spier has been in love with the boy next door forever. As his figure skating partner she spends time in his arms every day. But she’s also seen his arms around other girls—lots of other girls.

Gabe can’t imagine skating with anyone but Maddy, and together they have a real chance at winning some serious gold medals. So, he’s determined to keep thinking of her like a sister. After all, he’s never had a romantic relationship that lasted for more than two weeks.

But when their coach assigns a new romantic skating program, everything changes. Will this be the big break that Maddy’s been hoping for or the big breakup that Gabe has always feared?

[Won in a giveaway from Fierce Reads.]

DSCN0349Save Me by Jenny Elliott

Something strange is going on in the tiny coastal town of Liberty, Oregon. Cara has never seen a whale swim close enough for her to touch it—let alone knock her into the freezing water. Fortunately, cute newcomer David is there to save her, and the rescue leads to a bond deeper than Cara ever imagined.

But then she learns something about David that changes everything, and Cara is devastated. She turns to her best friend for support, but Rachel has changed. She’s suddenly into witchcraft, and is becoming dangerously obsessed with her new boyfriend….

Cara has lost her best friend, discovered that her soul mate is off limits, and has attracted the attention of a stalker. But she’s not completely alone. Her mysterious, gorgeous new friend Garren is there to support her. But is Garren possibly too perfect?

[Won in a giveaway from Fierce Reads.]

DSCN0350Unremembered by Jessica Brody

Sixteen-year-old Sera is the only survivor of an explosion on a plane. She wakes up in hospital to find that she has no memory. The only clue to her identity is a mysterious boy who claims she was part of a top-secret science experiment. The only adult she trusts insists that she shouldn’t believe anything that anybody tells her. In a tense and pacy novel exploding with intrigue and action, Sera must work out who she is and where she came from. Eventually she will learn that the only thing worse than forgetting her past is remembering it.

[Won in a giveaway from Fierce Reads.]

 

DSCN0351The Rule of 3: Fight For Power by Eric Walters

After sixty-six days of a catastrophic global blackout, life in the suburbs is not what it used to be for Adam and his fortified neighborhood of Eden Mills. Although an explosive clash has minimized one threat from outside the walls, Adam’s battle-hardened mentor, Herb, continues to make decisions in the name of security that are increasingly wrenching and questionable. Like his police chief mom and others, Adam will follow Herb’s lead. But when the next threat comes from an unexpected direction, nobody is ready for it. And someone is going to pay the price—because of Adam’s mistakes and mistaken trust.

[Won in a giveaway from Fierce Reads.]

 

That’s all for now. Omgosh. So many good books to read through! And to prove I wasn’t kidding about the cat thing:

DSCN0353

Free Fiction Friday #31

Hello ladies and gentlemen of blogland and welcome to Free Fiction Friday #30! For those of you who are new to this blog, or may have missed out on the previous Free Fiction Fridays: Every Friday (okay, almost every Friday—I try) I post an article containing 10 fiction e-books that are 100% FREE on Amazon at the time of posting. (and an additional 5 that are roughly of the same genre and on sale for less than $5) I try my best to make sure they are all 4+ stars with over 40+ reviews and 100 pages minimum if I can (It isn’t always possible)—so that you can get a list of the best-of-the-best to choose from and enjoy over the long weekend (While I do more important things than post… like laundry). I try to switch up the genres every week and this week, our theme is: Paranormal Romance! Enjoy~

THE FREE

(Paranormal Romance)

FFF31-cover-into the darknessFFF31-cover-night's embraceFFF31-cover-the emerald talismanFFF31-dream studentFFF31-cover-savage hungerFFF31-cover-a touch of midnightFFF31-cover-darkness awakenedFFF31-cover-the alpha meets his matchFFF31-cover-dragonbornFFF31-cover-tuesday's child

THE BARGAINS

(Paranormal Romance – Mystery/Thriller Romance)

FFF31-bargaincover-the remainsFFF31-bargaincover-midnight sacrificeFFF31-bargaincover-left drowningFFF31-bargaincover-demon can't help itFFF31-bargaincover-midnight sins

Free Fiction Friday #30

Hello ladies and gentlemen of blogland and welcome to Free Fiction Friday #30! For those of you who are new to this blog, or may have missed out on the previous Free Fiction Fridays: Every Friday (okay, almost every Friday—I try) I post an article containing 10-20 fiction e-books that are 100% FREE on Amazon at the time of posting. I try my best to make sure they are all 4+ stars with over 40+ reviews and 100 pages minimum if I can (It isn’t always possible)—so that you can get a list of the best-of-the-best to choose from and enjoy over the long weekend (While I do more important things than post… like laundry). I try to switch up the genres every week and this week, our theme is: YA Mysteries & Thrillers! Enjoy~

THE FREE

FFF30-adventuresinfuneralcrashingFFF30-assureddestructionFFF30-30secondstodieFFF30-xgenerationyoudontknowmeFFF30-glimpseFFF30-phantomsinphiladelphiaFFF30-introductionsFFF30-aspylikemeFFF30-novemberlakeFFF30-gradeastupid

THE BARGAINS

FFF30bargain-theforgerFFF30bargain-thefirsttokillFFF30bargain-onlytheinnocentFFF30bargain-midnightbetrayalFFF30bargain-you

Free Fiction Friday #15

Hey guys! It’s Free Fiction Friday, and for once, I’m actually home to do it. You may have noticed articles have been a bit spotty lately. I apologize for that. A while back (incase you missed the info) I got super sick. I had an ear-infection that just wouldn’t go away, and on the 8th day my eardrum ruptured. Chaos ensued and eventually I had 2 ER trips (once because of my ear, another because I was allergic to the antibiotics and stopped breathing), and a million doctor appointments while they tried to sort out my deafness (I lost hearing in both ears). Craziness. Eventually we cleared it up though, and I managed to survive, and realizing that I am constantly sick, my doctor finally agreed to send me for allergy testing.

I was tested for 140 allergens and as it turns out, I’m allergic to all but three of them. 6 of them are severe allergies that now require me to carry around a couple of Epi-pen’s incase my body decides to kill me. (I’m allergic to basically every plant on earth, cats (I have three), dogs, dust, feathers… it’s ridiculous.)Needless to say, it’s been crazy and I’ve been in-and-out of the doctor’s office for the last several weeks. I now take weekly allergen shots (as part of my allergy therapy to try and lesson my reactions) and take a crap-ton of meds just to function. Yay me? My point is: I’ve been really busy lately, so I apologize for the gaps in articles from week to week. I’m trying to be a little more reliable, but working within my new schedule is still giving me headaches.

ANYWAYS… it’s Friday, and that means FREE BOOKS! It’s going to be a bit of a mish-mash today. Here are some 4+ Star rated e-books from Amazon. All 100% free. Enjoy!

cover-necessaryevilscover-poisonpencover-theedgeofcouragecover-daffodilscover-unexpectedgiftscover-onthenickelcover-chasingbeautifulcover-thekingslegacycover-anislandofillusionscover-thelanguageofsparrowscover-souldnacover-nightoftheassassincover-bastialenergycover-perfectcover-seasonsofthemoon

Free Fiction Friday #10

Welcome people of blog-land to Free Fiction Friday #10! For those of you new to my blog (or just joining us from Tumblr this week), every Friday I pick 10 fiction ebooks from a very specific (and random) genre to share with you. These are 100% free on Amazon right now and all are rated 4+ stars. So check these out, and enjoy some free books for your weekend. This week we’re delving into Mystery~ Don’t like Mystery? Check back next week; the genre changes every Friday.

cover-deadlyblessingscover-deadendcover-fleshandbonecover-thedamagecover-theragtimekidcover-frameupcover-theconfessioncover-traintoanywherecover-thelongmidnightofbarneythomsoncover-whengraveyardsyawn

Looking For Feedback

This is a short post, but an important one. I’d like to know what Genre’s my followers tend to like the best. It’s okay to say “I like everything!” But see if you can give me a few of your favorites as well. What genre’s do you gravitate towards? I’m mostly a romance-nerd, so most of the books I choose to read fall along that genre. I realize not everyone’s a huge fan of romance all the time though, so I’d like to know what you guys tend to like, and based on your answers I’m going to try and intermingle more books from different genre’s to keep my content relevant for you guys.

Also, I’m a big fan of free books, so you’ll notice that on Fridays I like to point out a few good, free books that people can download and enjoy. Free Fiction Fridays tend to be popular with my followers, but my second question of the day is : What about book deals? Don’t worry, I’m not going to spam anyone with advertising, but since I’m trying to raise my weekly post count in-between book reviews, what do you guys think about doing a post mid-week on discounted 4+ Star books that I think might interest my follower-base? They’d be geared towards the genre’s you guys answer this post with, but all in the really-cheap range (99 c – $2.00). I think it’d help not only to introduce my followers to a wider range of books, but it may help promote some self-published authors floating around blogland that are offering cheap, great-quality books that maybe haven’t gotten as much notice because they aren’t free. Just a thought.

I’d also be happy to hear any suggestions you guys have for new types of content/posts or.. just what you guys like the most about what I already have. That way I can continue to strive to bring you guys good, relevant content. Thanks guys!

I’d love to hear from all my followers, so please take the time to comment on this post, and let me know what you think. ❤

Free Fiction Friday #8

Hello blogland! It’s that time again: FREE FICTION FRIDAY! So before you go wandering away from your computer this weekend, grab some of these 100% free e-books from Amazon. They’re all rated 4+ Stars, and are sure to entertain. This week we delve into Fantasy. Enjoy, and I’ll see you next Friday with a new set of ten books.

cover-Halfwaycover-APlaceToGocover-AHiddenFire????????????????????????????????????????cover-ThreadsThatBindcover-Sentinelcover-TheRushcover-TheSynthesiscover-TerreneTheHiddenValleycover-OldNathan

Partial Reviews: How to write them, how to accept them.

bookshelves-at-the-library_w482_h725 One controversial topic that seems to frequently pop up between authors and reviewers, is that of books that are reviewed negatively after a reviewer has stopped midway through reading it. I’ve seen both sides of the conversation: that of the author that is perplexed and angry that someone has rated their book without bothering to finish reading it, and the other; the reviewer’s, who feels that the fact that they didn’t finish the book may signify that something is greatly wrong with it. As a reviewer myself, I’d like to attempt to explain the second viewpoint, but also, offer up some advice on how to review a book you haven’t bothered to finish reading in a way that is honest, and helpful to the author.

Sometimes as a reviewer, I am put in a very difficult position. I love reading books, and the fact that I can get 100% free books if I’m willing to review them, is a mind blowing idea. It’s akin to leading a kid to the candy isle and telling them “You can eat any of the candy here you want… as long as you’ll tell me what it tastes like.” Do you know any kids that are going to turn that down? The problem is… the adult leading this hypothetical kid through the candy store… is also the adult who made the candy. As a reviewer, it’s tough to give negative reviews to an author. Having been given the gift of their creative child, it often feels like I’m telling them their kid is ugly. There’s no real polite way to it. I can be honest, and if they’re of a fair mind, they’ll take my honesty for what it is: just my opinion–of course, how many parents do you know would take that well?

So you might ask, what’s worse than telling an author that you didn’t like their book? How about telling them it was so awful you couldn’t force yourself to read it? We’d all like to think that we could push our way through any book, but sometimes, you just can’t, and it’s unreasonable to expect you to. Now, it’s not often that I’ll get a book that’s so awful I can’t finish it… but it has happened. In fact, the book I’m currently reading, is on that very short list. Sometimes there comes a point in a story when your misery of reading that book overwhelms your sense of duty, and you can do nothing more than close the cover and give up.

From the author’s point of view, this seems unfair. They want to know why we couldn’t finish reading it. That’s a fair thing to ask. You SHOULD tell the author why you couldn’t finish reading it… because whatever it is that made you close that book–they need to know about it. Unfortunately, though they want the answer, they also don’t want your negative rating attached to it. They have to make sales. Once again, we’re back to calling their kid ugly. So what, as reviewers should we do?

Tell them anyway.

We are not obligated as reviews to pander to their hurt feelings. There’s a difference between writing a flaming, unreasonably negative review, and being honest. Should you write them a review that says “THIS SUCKED, DON’T BUY IT!”? No. Should you write a review saying you didn’t enjoy the book because you found the character’s actions unbelievable and the dialogue very stiff? Yes. They need to know that, and although it may hurt their feelings, any author worth their salt is going to listen to what you had to say and use it to improve. Just because your opinion is negative doesn’t make it any less valid.

So, you may ask, how do we write a review that basically equates to “I couldn’t force myself to read this.”? The answer is simple: Explain why you couldn’t read it. It’s okay to tell an author that it “just wasn’t my kind of book.” or “I didn’t get it.” Everyone has a different preference for the type of stories they like. Personally, I’m a huge fan of Romance, Dystopians, and Paranormal. You may be a huge fan of Military History, Humorous Fantasy, or Science Fiction Thrillers. If you like that sort of book and want to give it a 5-star review, more power to you. I’d probably think it was boring. It’s okay to disagree with the masses… just make sure your review reflects the honest reason behind why you couldn’t read that book.

Take the time to explain what bothered you about the book, and cite examples. Examples are your friend, because no one can refute them. If you say “the grammar was horrible, the character was an airhead, and the plot was stupid.” Well, that’s your opinion. An author, or other reader will look at the review and say “okay.. they just wanted to be mean. Haters gunna hate. ”  If you give an example, such as:

“I found the grammar in this book to be lacking. For instance, on line 4 of page 36 (location 915 on kindle), the sentence reads: “You no idea what your talking about.” Obviously, it should have read more like “You have no idea what you’re talking about.”  Mistakes like these should have been caught in the first draft.”

There’s nothing they can say to dispute that. It’s an error. You have proof. If a character does something you feel is air-headed, quote the lines. Point it out, and explain why you found these instances unsavory. What bothered you about the scene?

In the end, the author may still choose to take your partial review as a personal attack, but they’re going to look stupid arguing with you. If they want to ignore the fact that you’re providing invaluable feedback towards improving their craft, well, that’s their problem. There’s only so much you can do.

As for the authors out there: read your negative reviews. It may be painful, it may make you angry, but it’ll provide you with useful information. It’s usually pretty easy to tell who the haters are… they’re the reviewers that say “THIS SUCKS!”, but if you happen to run across one of these infamous partial-reviews, try not to take it as a personal attack against your literary baby. Look past the opinions and try to find the reason behind them. Chances are, there’s a kernel of truth to what they’re telling you, OR, there may be something you need to clean up in your narrative that’s causing people to get the wrong opinion. Pay close attention to the repeated comments, you may find a few weak points in your writing you weren’t aware of. Negative reviews can only hurt you if you let them. Use them as a stepping stool to get better at your craft–and more importantly–thank all your reviewers for being honest. They are brave individuals that took the time to share their opinions and advice despite the fact they knew you probably wouldn’t take their criticism well. Reviewers that pander to your feelings are a dime a dozen. Those few who are unflinchingly honest? Priceless.