Let’s talk bookish: should there be a standard for book reviews?

It’s Friday again and that’s where I get to post my favorite discussion! J.R. @ Eternity Books is hosting this discussion called Let’s talk bookish every Friday, so feel free to join! Today’s topic is the question whether book reviews should have standards, so here we go!

In general: nobut

In general, I am not convinced that book reviews should be standardized (more later), but I believe it to be of great importance to have one rule: no hate. Whether this is an unspoken rule or one you learn on the way, it should definitely count.

There shouldn’t be any hate concerning the author as they put a lot of effort and love into their books and no matter how much you might dislike this book, the author still thinks of it as their baby and might even identify herself through it. Subsequently, no hate for the book. This is another person’s work and you wouldn’t want you work to be brutally criticized.

Back to in general… – book reviews in their free time

I am talking about book reviews by blogger such as you and me – people who started a blog out of the love of books and who don’t consider this to be their job (more on that later). Considering that this is a free-time activity, I would consider it inappropriate to standardize a book review. Everyone has the right to create their text individually, pointing out all the positive aspects and laying low on the negative, or vice versa.

There shouldn’t be any hate, but apart from that it should be the blogger’s individual choice. Standards such as general book information, publication date or page count aren’t necessary as it would become an obligation rather than a nice touch to add to your review. Personally, I am very fond of the little information about books such as pages etc, but making it obligatory as a standard feels inappropriate and not fitting as this is unique and individual work.

Book reviews as jobs (newspaper or agency)

I don’t believe this to be any matter here as most of my readers are bloggers or bookworms, but in the case of book reviews being your job, then I’d say yes to standards. Having this as a job would probably mean having a broader audience which should always be connected to rules or standards. Publishing your review in a newspaper should most definitely be standardized as legal boundaries have to be made clear, such as hate speech.

That’s it – I guess this is a very controversial topic and I’m excited to read what you think about it, so feel free to challenge me in the comments! Happy reading and a great weekend!

Author: Blogger Books

I'm a huge fan of Draco Malfoy, I love scones and tea time, I don't like horror movies and obviously I'm a huge book nerd.

11 thoughts on “Let’s talk bookish: should there be a standard for book reviews?”

  1. Great post Jane ❤ I love how you broke it down 🙂

    I 100% agree about having standards if it’s your job, that is definitely necessary. But I kind of think that having a standard in the normal community, would be helpful, especially for new reviewers who aren’t sure how to start. It would be something really basic because we wouldn’t want to stifle creativity. For instance, like you said, no hate, review the book and not the author, don’t rate/review books you haven’t read, and things like that.

    I definitely would not agree to something rash, like reviews must have this certain word count, or be written in this format, or you can’t write a negative ranty review. That’s just not fair and I wouldn’t want to be a reviewer anymore with rules like that.

    What do you think?

    P.S. Also, I go by my real nickname now, Rukky, instead of my pen name J.R. Lynn ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much! And you are totally right! That would really be helpful and your ideas are great! I remember when I first started writing reviews and wished that would be great! So yes, I’d definitely agree to those standards!
      And great name😋😋😋 happy reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post! ❤ I definitely agree that we should all try not to have any hate, because this is an author's work, and ultimately we should try to spread kindness in all that we do. But, as you said, it is an individual's choice. I have no issues with sharing negative reviews, but I try to do so in a respectful manner. I don't believe that there should be a set format or standard for book reviews, unless it's part of a job.

    Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

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