Review Policy

NOTE: This site is currently closed to review submissions. I have received several request as of late and unfortunately do not have the time to read and review as much as I’d like to. It’s not fair to those who have been kind enough to inquire and pass along books in hopes of receiving feedback and publicity only to receive nothing in return. Thank you for visiting and hopefully in the future I can return to reviewing books with some regularity.


 

Hello and thank you for taking the time to read this page. To keep this simple, I will use a simple Q&A format to discuss my book review policy.

What types of books do you read?
To be honest, I read all sorts of books (mysteries, literary, mainstream, non-fiction), but my primary focus is reading speculative fiction. This includes any fiction with a speculative element (science fiction, fantasy, horror, dystopian, alternate history, etc.). I prefer adult fiction, but will read young adult titles on occasion. I also enjoy graphic novels and am happy to review them as well.

Do you review self-published books?
Yes, but I will be more discriminate. Other than Hugh Howey’s Wool series, I have avoided reviewing self-published novels in the first year of this blog. This was partly out of fear — fear that an author would contact me directly, send me their baby, and that I would dislike it and feel obligated to write an honest review. I am no longer plastering a 1-5 star rating on my reviews, thus removing the label, “this book sucks,” whenever it falls short of the rest of the population. Furthermore, I am finding some of the less popular titles get a lot more traction on this blog. Nobody is going to come here to find a review of George R. R. Martin’s latest book, but up and coming authors may appreciate some publicity and direct their fans and friends to read a review on their work.

For self-published works, please inquire using the form below. I am most interested in books that are unique from the traditionally-published works. Maybe it’s a novella (too short for typical publishers) or maybe the form or subject deviates from typical novels. I am most interested in stand-alone, thought-provoking stories. I am least interested in book series, particularly self-published epic fantasies.

What format of books do you prefer?
I prefer printed books, but I have a kindle and would be happy to read a book in electronic format as well.

What type of reviews do you write?
My reviews are completely subjective. I try to be positive about the reviews, but honest in where I think the strengths and weaknesses lie. A blog of all positive reviews does nothing for the reader in search of new books and destructive reviews only come at the expense of the author and publisher with little benefit to anyone else.

As of May 16, 2013, I will no longer be rating books on a scale of 1-5 stars. I have found this method to be too arbitrary for my taste. The impression one has between a 3-star and 4-star book is monumental, yet I often find myself waffling between the two as if there is little distinction.

Furthermore, I am finding that my reviews are often focused on justifying the rating with lists of pros and cons rather than just writing a review with a viewpoint. If someone wants a book rating, they are much better served browsing Amazon or Goodreads.

What I still plan on doing is having starred reviews (like Publisher’s Weekly and Kirkus Reviews) to highlight exceptional works. I estimate this will denote the top 20% of the books I read.

Does receiving a free review copy influence your reviews?
No. Not in any way.

Does receiving a free review copy guarantee that you will review the book?
No. I will not review a book that is a completely disappointing read, because it is not worth my time finishing it. Also, if my to-read pile gets too large, I may not be able to get to a particular book. But for those who are kind enough to provide reviewer copies, I will do my best to provide good feedback on this site and on Goodreads.

How can I contact you?
Please fill out the form below to send a message to my email account.

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