The Magic City

The Magic City

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Reviewing Reviews

How many times has the wise Laura Hayden cautioned, "Friends don't let friends read reviews."  Following that advice, who does read reviews? 

Don't worry, this isn't a post ranting about evil reviews.  Rather, I'm interested in starting a discussion about the benefit (or harm) that comes from reviews.  Without a doubt, a positive review from a major publication can generate good buzz for a book, but what benefit do reviews really serve?  Who is reading them?

My mother is a voracious reader.  She finds new books based on librarian recommendations and word of mouth from her friends.  The same is true of most of my lawyer friends.  When I started rattling off book review sites and asking them if they read reviews on Amazon/Barnes & Noble, they laughed, patted me on the head and told me I needed to leave work at an earlier hour because I was frying my brain.  In comparison, most of my writer friends devour blogger reviews, Goodreads reviews, etc. like the words were the very air they breathe.  Do only writers care about reviews?  I'd love to hear your review of reviews.  Do you have any favorite sites or trusted sources? 

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