What is the best book review?

What is the best book review? – An honest one that a reader took the time to write.

As authors and avid readers know, book reviews are important!

I read what others have said before making up my mind about a book.

Blurbs, at least nowadays, are designed to be more of ‘teasers’ than an overview of the story.

What is a book review?

e-reader image for review blog

Quite simply – it is your opinion of something you have read.

Some visibly squirm when ‘book review’ is mentioned. May I say again? A book review is your OPINION of something you have read, be it good or bad.

Some people write a synopsis of the story, or a critique, but a review can be one line long.

Where do you write book reviews?

Where you bought it from
(Free counts as verified on Amazon.)
Verified is important to Amazon on the latest purge.

Unverified reviews and ARC reviews are being culled.

This is not necessarily fair because an author might be trying to increase reviews on Amazon – which is where many people look – other than Goodreads.

However, the reader might have bought the book at an author event or from another retailer.

Amazon declining some book reviews

In another attempt to rid their site from ‘fake’ reviews anything that raises ‘ a warning flag’ to Amazon and a book review is refused.

Someone recently reported that a review had been refused because of ‘unusual activity’ about a book. The author had been advertising the book at an author event and a number of people who bought, read and liked the book decided to review it, around the same time.

The author was understandably upset.


From a member of a Facebook group…

“Guys, make sure your FB settings are all set to private or you might run into trouble. Amazon won’t let you post reviews if they think you are affiliated with the author! Do not link your Amazon account with Facebook, they’ll know instantly & might block you from reviewing anything!

And when posting in groups, check settings as well.”

A couple of recent book reviews of Hold the Faith

Hold the Faith by Susan M B Preston, cover image

If you’re an atheist, you probably would want to avoid reading it. But you’re missing out on something that is a well-written piece of historical fiction. The author has taken great pains with her research into the times. Maybe it’s one-sided. But many works are, and each has a right in our society – whether we like it or not.

It covers a time when Christianity was still a fledgling cult. When compared to known cults of modern times, it reflects how their members struggled against the authorities and public opinion at the time. For that, I found a great reflective insight into how people act and react to each other, how their faith and beliefs are challenged, how family and friends can react to someone for what they think.

If you’re a Christian, you will love this, and I recommend it. If you’re a non-believer, that’s fine too. I completed reading this as a non-believer, a free-thinker, and I am far from converting myself (or others)… so put your fears aside, open the book, and I believe you could enjoy it as I did.

What a lovely surprise this book was! I started thinking it may be heavy on religion, but it’s more historical than anything else, a really good insight into what living a Christian life would have been like. I’d definitely read more if there was another.

You can find both of these – and others on Amazon.com

Hold the Faith reviews

But a book review can be one line… like this

“Love this book.”

Along with a five-star rating it says a lot with a few words.

Book reviews are…

  • Informative –to future readers.
  • Encouraging – to authors

In this world there is a lack of encouragement. So many people are busy, struggling, or time-poor.

bouquet for book reviewers

With this in mind – I would like to thank everyone who has written a review of any of my books! I appreciate that you have taken the time to write a book review.

And yes… I DO write reviews. I know how much work goes into researching, planning, writing, then checking multiple times before sending the manuscript to beta-readers then for editing. After that comes fixing anything they found that needs alteration.

Just thinking,


P.S. If you want some review hints I have a free PDF cheat sheet.

You can grab it here
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