The Compulsive Reader: Q&A

Monday, December 5, 2011


When it comes down to the end of the semester, I tend to accomplish amazing feats in procrastination. My task of choice is cleaning, which is good, because otherwise I'd probably never see any flat surfaces.

So, here's a bit of electronic housekeeping for you: commonly asked questions.

Q: Why don't you do star ratings on your reviews?

A: Because I'm indecisive, and star ratings are hard. I feel as if they serve two purposes: to shock you (WHOA, she gave that book only one star?!) and to allow readers to make quick, snap judgement without reading reviews. I spend a lot of time on my reviews, and I'd like for you to read them (but if you just want to look at cover pictures, that's totally cool, too), instead of just seeing my star rating and then going, "Oh, okay, three stars. I won't bother."

Ratings are also so subjective. What may be a deal breaker for me in a book might not necessarily bother you. It's hard to quantify the amount of "like" I have for a book (well, sometimes it isn't). I want you to know why I like a book, not how much I like it.

Q: I just started a blog and I reviewed [insert book title here], too! I was wondering, could you give me the publicist's email so I can send her my review, too?

A: No.

Q: Wow, you're mean.

A: I'm really not. But I just don't think it's appropriate for me to be passing out personal information that's not mine to give.

Q: Will you be doing more Classics Corner posts?



Q: How long have you been doing this?

A: I started reviewing books for HarperTeen's FirstLook program (which I don't think exists anymore), BookDivas, and TeensReadToo in 2005. I started the blog in 2007.

Q: Can I have your books?

A: All of them? Because I have about 2,000. Are you prepared for that many? Are you going to come pick them up, or should I ship them out and bill you for the cost?

Oh, you mean just one? No, sorry. I do give away a lot of surplus ARCs for free (just pay shipping), but you just have to watch my Twitter page for that, and I only give to librarians and bloggers. If that's not you, sorry. Buy the book when it comes out, or go to your library. If they don't have it, try inter-library loan.

Have a question? Drop it in the comments or email me at thecompulsivereader@gmail.com.


readinginwinter said...

I can't star-rate books, either. I find it's so subjective! Example, I tried to read Cloud Atlas just recently, based on the reviews. It would get 4-5 stars, no matter where I looked, and yet I just couldn't get into it. I was falling asleep halfway through every page. I'm just thankful I borrowed it from the library! I think, ultimately, people have to use their own judgement, not just go by a star-rating.

Great Q&A!

sugarpeach said...

I can understand why you don't do star ratings. It's really subjective... Do you cross-post your reviews in Amazon or Barnes&Noble?

You have quite a library! :)

Michelle said...

LOL! I love the sneaky roundabout ways some people try to get publicists contact information. "Really, it's not so I can ask for books but just to show them I'm reading and reviewing!" LOL

Alexa said...

I really agree about star (or whatever you want to put in) ratings. It's difficult for me, because I can't quantify in figures how I felt about a book.

And yay for big libraries! I miss my collection at home, but I'm slowly and steadily building one here :)

Alex (A Girl, Books, OtherThings) said...

This was a really cute post!
I do star ratings but sometimes I realize that over time my original rating changes, it's odd.


And I'm with you about the publicists emails, I think that's way too personal to share.


brokenpenguins said...

Wow, you're mean. Can I have all your books? Kidding. I can't star-rate my books either. For one, I very rarely read books that I hate. Unless I'm 90% sure I will love the book, I don't waste my time reading it. But hey, maybe that will change when you email me the publicist's email ;)

~Farah @ Broken Penguins

Anonymous said...

I love that you plugged inter-library loan :)