How To Write a Good Book Review

One of the best things you can do for an author is leave a review.  Online reviews help new people get a feel for the quality and content a book might have.  Reviews help people understand how a specific book will impact their life.  It may take you a few moments, but the impact your review might make could mean hundred or thousands of dollars for an author.  It’s just one simple thing you can do to help someone else out.

Writing a review sounds simple enough, but sometimes when you get down to actually writing a review, it can feel extremely daunting.  So, I pulled together a few tips to help you get started.  

  1. Leave an honest star rating.  If you liked the book, give it a five-star rating.  If you have a legitimate reason to give it a lower star rating, do so.  You don’t have to give a lower star rating just because everyone else has given five stars.  I recently heard that authors need at least 50 five-star reviews in order to rank on Amazon’s recommendations list.  Now, the algorithm is constantly changing, so that exact number may change, but the reality is that most authors need a LOT of reviews to get noticed on Amazon.  So, if you feel like the book was good, go ahead and give it a five-star rating.  
  2. Aim for a few sentences.  Simply saying “great book” doesn’t tell a prospective reader very much.  A solid review will aim to have at least a few sentences to help the public understand a little more about the book, especially from YOUR perspective.  
  3. Include the author’s name and the book title.  Mention these things as you introduce or start out your review.  An example might be:  “Valerie Morris’ book “We’re All Ears” is a great read…”
  4. Explain the main point of the book.  What was the author trying to tell you and what was the point?  What is the value someone gets by reading this book?  
  5. Main Topics.  Spell out some of the main topics the author touches on in the book.
  6. Share your perspective.  Did you like the book?  Did you have critiques of the book?  Take a moment to explain if you would recommend it or not and why.    
  7. Share what you learned.  Share a specific example of something you learned or took away as a result of reading the book.
  8. Who else should read it?  Mention who might benefit from reading this book in the future.  “This book is a great resource for…” or “This book is ideal for anyone who…”
  9. Proofread your review before posting.  Take a quick glance to see if you have any typos that might cause people to ignore your review or not take it seriously.  

You can leave reviews for people at any time (though around a book launch is prime time to help an author out).  There’s nothing stopping you from posting a review from books you’ve read in the past.  Maybe you have a few books you know deserve a good review from you.  Go take a few minutes and help an author out today!

Learn More About Valerie's Book

We’re All Ears  –  How to increase your impact, influence, and success online in a noisy world.

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