Saturday, April 21, 2012

To Comment or Not

This subject has come up a lot recently. Not only whether an author should comment on a review of their own book but should authors review other authors?

I review other authors if I like their book. If you see a review on my blog, it is because I liked the book. If I didn’t like your book, I won’t review it, but I will tell you privately, if you’ve asked me to review it, what I didn’t like and why. I believe constructive criticism is helpful and I would want the same treatment.

Should I comment on a review of my own book? Hmmm … it depends. If I know the reviewer and I’ve been on her blog before, chances are I will comment. If I don’t know the reviewer very well, I will thank them privately through email. I also believe that reviewers should respect the author and if they were given a free copy of the book to review, they should thank the author for it.

As for my own blog, I love comments so if an author wants to leave a comment on a review I'v done for them, then I'm all for it. I think readers like seeing what the author has to say. It makes them seem real.

I will be reviewing The Gates, by Rachael Wade with an interview this Monday, April 23rd for her blog tour.

My next review after that should be of Anne Carter’s StarCrossed Hearts another great book by a great author.

By the way, check out this awesome review by my brother as he gives his take on my novel, Whisper Cape, on his blog. He is my brother, so he might be a tad biased but it fills my heart with so much joy that he took the time to read my book and write such wonderful things about. With this review, I feel very confident in commenting and saying thank you. 

Thanks for reading,



  1. Nice post, Regan. I think every author has to tread carefully here and make the decision that works best for them. However, I think commenting on reviews (on sites such as GR, Amazon, etc.) is touchy. Personally, I don't even comment on positive reviews. I'll click a "like" button and leave it at that, just to give the reader or reviewer their space to say what they wish. When it comes to negative reviews, I will never, ever, ever comment on them and have seen too many authors' reputations ruined because they chose to do so. It's not worth it in my opinion. Especially since readers are entitled to hating a book if they personally hate it. We don't write for those who hate it, we write for those who enjoy it. While we are IN our work, we are not our work.

    As for your thoughts on reviewing as an author, I agree with your approach--to message the author privately if you know them with your thoughts, etc. If I don't know them and they didn't ask for any constructive criticism, I don't offer it because it's not my place. In those cases, I try my best to wear my reader's hat. Actually, in all cases I try to wear my reader goggles, and as you and I have discussed before, I personally don't say anything at all if I have nothing nice to say. If I didn't care for a book, I point out a few positives--if there were any for me during my reading experience--and then seal my lips. That's what works best for me.

    Thanks for your thoughts on this!


  2. Thank you Rachael.Good luck on your tour.


  3. Interesting stuff. I've never had an author comment directly on a review I've written. Since I only write positive reviews they will often send me an email thanking me. But never in public. Under my contract with my publisher a review has to be an "arm's length" transaction. Meaning I can't pay for the book, the author can't pay me for the review, and we have no personal relationship. That ensures there is no bias. Now, sometimes after I write a review I do become friends with the author. A few I count as good friends. And I can't review their books. I'm biased.

  4. Thank you for your post, Anonymous. It's interesting. Even though only a couple are posted here, I've been hearing a lot of different views on this subject and I'm beginning to believe there are no set rules and every blogger and author is different.


  5. It's a touchy subject with publications. As I noted, reviews are an "arm's length" transaction. They don't want to see any connection between an author and a reviewer. Even a comment on a review. A review is 100% opinion.

    My feature articles are different. They contain little opinion. With those it is not unusual for the author or musician to comment on them. They often add in interesting details. I welcome them, and expect them.

    It's a fine line at times.


I love hearing from you and always look forward to your comments!