Reviewing – what to say

Ash has recently been asked to give a breakdown of how we review things here at Page One, and we thought you’d be interested too. Ashleigh’s reviews tend to be concise and directly to the point, she talks briefly about what the book is about without spoilers, then expands into what she liked and what she didn’t. My reviews follow a similar format, but since I’m the ‘Queen of Waffling’ they tend to be almost double in length.

I like to use the WWW and EBI if format. This is What Worked Well and Even Better If. I also like to discuss the things I personally didn’t enjoy or found grating as a reader. But a key thing is to remember that as always our reviews are subjective.

What Went Well- (1)

My Basic Review Format

Overview – Say a little something about the storyline, the main characters and the situation without giving too much away.

WWW– Did you like the main character? Why? Did you find the dialogue snappy and quick? Did the book make you laugh/cry/catch your breath?

EBI – What bits didn’t quite work for you? Why? What would you have liked to have seen instead?

We all have personal gripes, mine is repetition – woe betide you if you use the same word more than three times on the same page. A lecturer once told me that we all have a favourite word when writing and we use it more than we should without realising it. That’s why mentioning any issues like this can be useful to the author. It helps to pick up on tiny things that the  Beta readers and editors may have missed.

Rating & Recommend – Would you recommend it to a friend? What type of reader would you recommend it to? For example, ‘I’d recommend this to someone who enjoyed The Notebook and is looking for a quick, steamy romance to pass the time on a Sunday afternoon’. What star rating would you give it? What symbols would you use? You can find Page One’s rating symbols here: RATING SYSTEM

This feedback is vital because it can help the author fine tune their next project. Feedback should always be CONSTRUCTIVE. It’s not intended to put the author down or be a personal attack.

We hope this is handy to any other reviewers out there! Leaving reviews is extremely important for authors, it helps boost their reach and of course, it makes them feel like their blood, sweat and tears were all worth it.

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