Georgia joins us today to talk about reviewing non fiction and poetry.
As part of Rosie’s Review-A-Book Challenge #RRABC, we continue our week of advice posts. See the link at the bottom of the page for details of the challenge and where you can sign up for a free book in exchange for a review.
I find non-fiction and poetry easier to review than fiction; I’ll explain why. If you have chosen to read a non-fiction book, you will presumably have done so because the subject matter is of interest to you. For example, the non-fiction books I read are usually on the subject of writing, although one recently was all about poisonous plants in the hedgerow… research, of course!
When you have finished the book, you will know if it has satisfied the question you were hoping to have answered, and you can write your review accordingly. Consider these questions:
Did this book educate or enlighten you in the way you had hoped?
Was the information presented in a way that was easy to digest?
Was it enjoyable to read?
Having read this book are you left with more questions than answers and therefore in need of further research?
Would you recommend this book to someone else seeking similar information?
If you can write the answer to each of those questions, then you have your review and anything else you can add is a bonus. Remember, reviews are for the benefit of other readers, to help them decide whether or not to pick up that book.
Reviewing a book of poetry is slightly different, although, I believe, it’s easier than a novel. This is because it is generally a shorter, quicker read, and one that you may pick up and put down over a period of time.
Poetry is, of course, subjective, so when you’ve finished just think about how it made you feel, generally. Were there particular poems in the book that you enjoyed more than others? Mention them if so, and give a general sense of the mood of the book – upbeat, romantic, depressing or scary – that is the sort of information readers would find useful. Again, any other detail you want to add is terrific but don’t be put off by feeling you have to write something of great length. Readers will appreciate your feedback and authors will be delighted you’ve taken the time to read their work and the trouble to review it.
If you’d like to read more about Rosie’s Review-A-Book Challenge #RRABC click here
Tomorrow Olga will be giving advice about how to write a more detailed book review.