Honesty in stories. Truth in words.

Short, Sweet Book Reviews


The Requests

Everyone knows that authors are pretty much broken records when it comes to book reviews. “Please review my book!” “Reviews are awesome!” “Reviews totally make my day!”

Yeah yeah yeah. We’re all guilty of it. And we all have our own reason for asking.

But even us author admit that writing reviews isn’t fun, especially when you didn’t like the book so much. No one wants to leave a negative review! Aside from that, reviewing books takes time.


Quick and Easy–REALLY?

Typical me, I wanted to find the quickest, easiest way possible to write reviews, because of course I want to help my writer friends. This all started clicking in my brain just about the time a fellow blogger friend, Kate Willis, posted this post. I loved reading Kate’s reviews on Goodreads, because they were short, yet told me everything important that I would want to know about the book before reading it (or to decide if I wanted to read it.)

Kate linked back to this post:


The Quick and Dirty Guide to Easy Book Reviews


It wasn’t immediate, but taking my own spin from both of these posts, I kinda developed my own method of writing reviews. The formula is simple:

What I loved — what I didn’t love — another thing I liked — content warnings

Pretty easy, right? Some people call this the sandwich method, and I think it works beautifully. And it’s easy. That’s four sentences minimum, and I usually max out a six sentences.


The Dreaded Star Ratings

I greatly dislike rating books with stars. Seriously. It’s complicated. And because I’ve made the decision not to rate any book lower than 4 stars (author etiquette decision), it raises a challenge. There are some books I just don’t feel right about giving a 4 star rating.

If I can’t give a 4 star rating, I won’t rate it at all. I may still review the book, but I don’t want my opinion to ding an author’s overall rating because my opinion is my opinion. Of course, everyone has to make their own decision about this, and I’m not saying you should do what I do. That’s just what I’ve chosen to do.


Writing book reviews doesn’t have to be hard. I made them so hard in the begining that I hated reviewing books. Now, though, with just four or six sentences per review, it doesn’t take much time out of my day AND I can help my author friends out. Win-win, right? :)




Do you have a method of writing book reviews? What was your last 5 star book?


2 comments so far.

2 responses to “Short, Sweet Book Reviews”

  1. Kellyn Roth says:

    I review in great length, but it’s just because that’s my hobby. I honestly prefer short reviews a lot of the time when it comes to reading them. Or at least really concise reviews that state the issues and the goodnesses (in the reviewers opinion).

    Which is weird because I like WRITING long reviews but not READING them … I need to rethink my life. ;)

    The last five-star read … Number the Stars by Lois Lowry. It was both heartbreaking and sweet.

    • Ivy says:

      Your reviews are super fun to read!!! I think it’s awesome that you have the time to write such awesome reviews. I have to admit I like shorter reviews, too, but you are one of the few long-reviewing people I read. ;)

      OHHHHHH!!!! That’s one of my absolute favorite books!!!!! <3 <3

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