Welcome to Rebecca from the Literary Connoisseur.
Please tell us a little about yourself. Well! I am an eighteen year-old American book reviewer. I read anything and everything from YA (young adult) to Biographies to Fiction. My blog will be turning a year old next month on June 28th (YAY!) and this is my dream. I am loving every single minute of blogging, I have had so many opportunities open up because of it, and I couldn’t be happier! (Unless maybe if I interviewed J.K. Rowling.)
On average how many books do you read a month? What genres do you enjoy? I read on average a book every three days. That averages to about ten books per month, or depending on my schedule, eight to twelve books per month. I have set my reading goal to 150 books this year! I read absolutely everything and enjoy them all. I used to be skeptical about Sci-Fi books, but I have fallen in love with a few of those recently as well!
Where do you tend to review? (links etc.) I review on my blog, http://www.Theliteraryconnoisseur.com, every few days, and occasionally Amazon and Goodreads as well. (As per request from the author.) If it’s a mind-blowing book, I post EVERYWHERE about it!
Why do you review – for other readers, for author feedback, for yourself? For myself! I always wanted to discuss the books I read with my friends, and I wanted to get them to read all of the wonderful books I was reading. This was my solution, and it worked! I do it for myself, but I’ve heard that my blog has helped many readers find their perfect book.
Are you influenced by other reviews when choosing a book? What other factors influence your choice? Mostly friends, magazines, word of mouth, etc. If I hear wonderful things, I want to read it. If I hear terrible things, I want to read it also. Basically if I get wind of a book, I put it on my TBR (to be read) pile!
When reviewing what are the important criteria? Editing? Plot? Which factors do you overlook? I overlook writing, unless it really bothers me and I cannot concentrate. I mainly pay attention to character progression, how much I like the female characters (I’m really critical when it comes to female characters), how easily the book grabbed me, and stereotypes. I like books that defy the norm.
What are your opinions on authors commenting on a review – negative and positive? I love hearing what the authors think of my reviews. And my favorite- which is terrible – I love it when my reviews affect an author so much, they cry. I’ve gotten a lot of, “Your review was so beautiful, I’m crying right now!”s. That makes me feel really good. Authors deserve wonderful reviews.
Do you feel it is appropriate to discuss author behaviour in a review, is this a factor which influences your choice? I typically don’t incorporate authors’ personalities, habits, personal views, etc. into book reviews. I like to stay on track and only cover the author’s story in my criticisms.
A lot of readers comment about a book with all 4 or 5 star reviews and nothing below as being suspicious? What do you think about this? Well, authors love good reviews. I completely understand if they’d rather stay away from three and below stars, so I don’t find it suspicious. I’m sure eventually they’ll come across that one, or those few people who dislike their book and give it less stars. I’ll probably end up reading the book anyway!
Do you give negative reviews? I do. I don’t like to, but sometimes they help people pick up the book! There are only a few books I have disliked, and I do write reviews for them, but I always find something positive with the book, and I NEVER badmouth. That can ruin an author’s reputation, and it can crush them like that. I respect all books and authors.
Do you read reviews by others and if so do they influence your choice? I surprisingly do not! I like to avoid others’ opinions before I read the book (which is ironic since…well, that’s my job!), but I do like to read reviews after I read the book and form my own opinion.
What medium do you prefer – e-books, audiobooks, or paper books? Would you care to expand on this? I LOVE paper books! I love the flexibility, I love the smells, the weight, the feel, and I love the way they look on my bookshelf. Although ebooks sure do come in handy sometimes. They have their purpose as well!
Do you mainly stick to your preferred genres, or would you consider reviewing outside your comfort zone? I have read books out of my comfort zone before, and I ended up adoring some of them! Never judge a book by its genre. You never know what you’ll find!
What are your opinions on paid reviews? (not including a copy of the book for review purposes only). I think it’s appreciated, but not necessary. I mainly get paid for one on one publicity work, and that tends to be easier and more beneficial to both the reviewer and the author. I have yet to be paid for a review!
Do you deal with reviewing Indie books differently to how you review a mainstream book? Well, the big difference is that there’s an enormous chance that the Indie author will in fact read your review. Mainstream authors will most likely not. When it comes to reviewing books, for me, it isn’t any different. But when it comes to the authors reading my reviews, yes! There’s a big difference!
Do you “judge a book by its cover?” Yes if it’s a nice cover, no if it’s a bad cover. The authors typically have no say over the cover, so if it’s a “not-so-appealing” cover, I look past it and read the synopsis. But if it’s an intriguing cover, I will most likely pick it up/buy it.
If you had to pick three favourite books to bring to a desert island what would they be? Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (my favorite of the series!) by J.K. Rowling, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, and Doctor Sleep by Stephen King. Weird variety, I know!
Where is your favourite place to read? Oh, I do not know! I can honestly read anywhere. I’d have to say…probably at home, with my mom, with a nice cup of coffee, and my cat curled up in my lap.
Feel free to add your blog/website etc.
You can follow my blog at Theliteraryconnoisseur.com, you can find me on Facebook as The Literary Connoisseur, and on Twitter at @LitConnoisseur, and you can email me for review requests at Fangirl1695@gmail.com. Thank you so much for interviewing me! I had a blast!