I decided to write this post last weekend, when I was going through the reviews on my blog and slowly but surely putting them on goodreads. When I got to the "B" section, I realized that an author had commented on a review of their book. This book, which I'm not going to name, was okay and I gave it three stars. Though the author responded that my feedback helped them, I'm now looking back on it and just feeling a bit weird about the interaction. At the time of the comment, I was so excited that an author noticed me. But then, a weird sense of shame followed me around. Here are some quotes of my review:
"I felt as if the author tried to do a slow burning romance but then got impatient and decided they were in love instead."
"...but I don't think it is anything special. When I look at all the fantasy books I have read, it just doesn't stand out."Obviously, I wasn't expecting the author to read my review, and my review shows that. These were my genuine thoughts on the book, but I began to feel a bit guilty for writing what I did. It went to the extent that when I read the sequel, and didn't like it as much, I didn't write a review for it in dread that the author would once again comment. By commenting on the review, I felt as if I was in the wrong by sharing my honest opinions.
Just under a year later, another author commented on my review of their book, which was once again, not a glowing review. I gave this book 2 out of 5 stars. Here are some of the things I said about the book:
"...really missed the mark for me. "
"I really didn't like the book for the most part."
"I couldn't connect with the characters, so I never was worried for them. The book wasn't thrilling for me, and I felt as if the plot became redundant."It wasn't like I was being super harsh in my review, and my critiques were my honest opinion. My last line of my review was, "I won't be continuing on with the series." By the time the author had commented, two other bloggers had commented on the post. The author responded with, "I hope you guys give it a go. In books 2/3 Leon Grace and Freya face the virus as it 'evolves'." By the author commenting this, all of a sudden I thought my review was too harsh. The thought even popped into my head that maybe I should read the second book. But then I thought, "No! I didn't like the first book, so why would I continue with the series?" The author made me feel guilty for sharing my honest opinion about a book that I didn't enjoy.
What I've come to realize is this: I write my reviews for my readers and to spread the word, not for the authors to read them. While it is rewarding to see an author notice your work, it also instills some guilt when I leave a less than glowing review. In this case, ignorance in bliss. If an author reads my review, great. But I don't want to see them commenting on it. If I want an author to know I liked their book, I'll tweet them. I don't need, and don't appreciate, when authors try to guilt me into reading their other books or being more lenient with my rating. I was simply doing what was expected of me as a reviewer: being honest.
Have any authors commented on your reviews of their books? How did you respond, and what did you think of it?
Thanks so much for stopping by and I'll see you soon with another post!
Genni @ Ready, Set, Read!