In September 2012, I attended the fourth annual Hampton Roads Writers Conference. In one of the sessions, editor and publisher Annmarie Lockhart talked about supporting the book industry.*
She suggested that writers should also be reviewers. My initial reaction was But I have no credentials! I have no degrees or training or expertise! I later decided that I don’t need credentials or expertise. All I need are my decades of experience as a reader. These reviews are those of an enthusiastic book lover, not a literary critic.
My favorite books are those that surprise me with laughter or stun me with wisdom. The ones with tears and joy and bittersweet recognition. I hope to provide details, to illustrate moments of tension and beauty, and to explain what keeps me reading all the way to the end.
I would love to hear from writers and readers, and reviewers, on this topic. What makes a review worthwhile? What makes a reviewer “qualified”?