Saturday, November 15, 2008

Faith -N- Fiction Saturday - Reviewing



Today's Question: Do you receive review copies of Christian books? If so, do you review them honestly? How do you handle it when you don't like a book but are obligated to provide a review? Who do you see your first commitment being to in book reviewing (besides God)? Yourself? The author? Your readers? Does your review change based on the spiritual content of the book or is it solely based on technical or artistic merit? Have you ever had a negative experience with an author after giving them a negative review?


Amy has posted a VERY thought provoking question today! I do receive review copies of Christian books as I belong to a couple of alliances. My reviews are very honest whether I like the book or not, and yes, I do consider the spiritual content. I review honestly based on whether or not I liked the story, if it kept my interest. If it portrayed a spiritual message I also consider whether or not that message was Scripturally accurate.


I think I must make every effort to post something about the book because the publicist has entrusted me with a copy of the book specifically for that purpose. I also feel I have to be honest - positively and negatively - because that's what a review reflects - my honest opinion about a book. Overall, I'd say my reviews are positive because there are some really fabulous authors out there. That is one reason I take time to do interviews, because I think it's important for people to realize that author's are people just like anyone else, and their lives reflect both the joys and trials of the Christian faith.


So far, none of my negative posts have garnered angry responses from the author. I know one time I expressed a negative opinion to the publisher, and it resulted in an amazing encounter with the author directly. Once I had a chance to express my opinion to the publisher and author and ask questions regarding what I found offensive, I found I had misjudged and learned a valuable lesson about probing behind the scenes a bit. I'll never forget that experience!


Book reviewing is a long-time love of mine, and my method hasn't changed a great deal over the years. Blogging my opinion does make it a vastly public thing though, so I'm prepared to face that - positively and negatively - as it happens. As a Chrisitian, I do approach this with prayer and I have found that interacting with the publicists and authors has been a fabulous experience! I learn and grow along the way, and I have made new and wonderful aquaintences.


Great post today Amy! Please stop by for the fun at My Friend Amy's blog!

7 comments:

Amy said...

I enjoy most of the books I read, Kim. I don't see myself as a particularly tough critic. :)

M. C. Pearson said...

I, too, have met so many wonderful people through all of this crazy blogging.

Smilingsal said...

Most books have something good in them, but I have come across the other kind. I wrote about it. Happy FiF Day!
http://bookcritiques.blogspot.com/

kalea_kane said...

How nice that even a negative review on your end was the catalyst to meeting the author and learning more about the book. :) I enjoyed your answer, and I have been lucky in that I have enjoyed all I have read and reviewd to date. :)

Christy said...

Wonderfully said....and I have meet wonderful bloggy friends through reviewing (and twitter!) It is such fun to talk with others like me...with a love of great fiction...

Hope you have a great weekend.

Blessings.

Sunny said...

That's a good point about interacting with the authors (i.e. interviews) and adding the personal touch.

Wendi B. - Wendi's Book Corner ~ Rainy Day Reading in Seattle said...

I think your point about the scriptural accuracy is an important one, and something that authors should be careful about!

~ Wendi

I've got mine up late . . .
Here
is my Faith 'n Fiction Saturday post.