New review of Die Laughing from Book ’em Danno!

I particularly like this review because it was concise and at the same time insightful. Patrick Murtha runs the Book ’em Danno! Die Laughing_147 KBreview site. He touched on nuances and subtleties in the novel that others hadn’t. He also did a terrific analysis of my approach to the characters. I can’t ask for more than that from a reviewer. Book ’em Danno! review site

What do you look for from a reviewer? (As opposed to a reader who leaves a review – in my mind they’re two different groups, or am I wrong on that?)

7 thoughts on “New review of Die Laughing from Book ’em Danno!

  1. I look for the same thing from both. In my mind, they are the same thing. The only difference is one gets paid while the other does it because he/she wants to. I want to know at least one thing they like from the story and one they didn’t. As long as I get that, I’m happy with a review.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Late me state that the reviewers I’m referring to are the ones with sites that receive gratis copies in exchange for reviews.

      The reason I kind of separate the blog/website reviewers from readers, Skye, is because I think someone who bills themselves or their site as a home for reviews is under more of an obligation to take a thoughtful, cogent approach to the book they’re reviewing, than a reader. Professionals (someone who gets paid by others to review books, not paid by the author) are under an even higher standard

      The blog/website reviewer doesn’t have to like the book, but if they don’t they should express a comprehensive reason for not liking it. Things like ‘it’s not my genre’ or ‘I don’t like protagonists who fall in love’ seems trite and shallow.

      A visitor to their site should hear something like, the story followed every cliché of (name your genre) and left little to the imagination’ or ‘the protagonist seemed one dimensional, particularly in regards to the characters love life, which occurred too quickly and too conveniently. Visitors should be given information that adds insight so they can decide whether to read the book or not.

      Ditto if the reviewer likes the book. ‘A fun read’ isn’t enough. Neither is ‘A page turner.’ As a site visitor, I want to know why.

      On the other hand, you point out the exact reason why I separate the two: a reader of the novel does it because he/she wants to. They have made an investment in your book, even if they received it as a promotion, they’ve invested their time with no obligation other than they’ve chosen to. They aren’t inferring a certain critical authority that a blog/website reviewer does. They’re leaving a review usually for two reasons: either the book was worth their time or it was a waste of their time. Whether they love or hate the book that has to be respected. As an author, I would hope that whatever they have to say, it was done in a well-written manner, but I don’t expect it as I would from a reviewer.

      On the other hand, I see your point. The two are a fine line that can easily intermingle.

      PS – sorry for this crazy-long reply – once the ball started rolling it wouldn’t stop!


      • That’s a long reply, but a well thought-out one. I can see where you’re coming from with it too, what you mean about the difference between the two. It’s something I hadn’t considered in the past and worth putting more thought into. Using your description as a guide, I think I’m going to go read a few reviews online now and see if I can figure out which “reviewers” are which. Hmm… This aught to prove interesting…

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi, Louis! So good to see you here today, and I’ll be checking out this review shortly. I’ve already tweeted and FB’d it, too.

    As for reviewers, I find some professional reviewers to be great, and some not so much. And exactly the same thing with reviews from readers, though sometimes with a less polished sound. (Which can be good, too.) I don’t know that there’s a right or wrong in opinions on these differences, though. I think it’s probably just as subjective as our reading tastes.

    For me, I won’t read any review that goes into detail on plot. I don’t want to know that ahead of time. Subject, fine. Name a favorite character, without giving away too much, fine. (Sally Lou was a strong female character with a great sense of humor, etc.) But start giving me too many details, and I’m moving on. Mostly, what I want to know is, did the story engage you? Were the characters interesting/funny/scary/adorable, and well-drawn. Is the writer’s style something you really enjoyed? Do they have a strong voice? A lyrical way with descriptions? An action-packed, take no prisoners approach? Those kinds of things that let me know if the book sounds like something I’m going to enjoy.

    But, again…that’s a very subjective view. Some people like it when the review goes over each plot point and character flaw. And that’s okay, if it encourages them to read the book. It just doesn’t work as well for me.

    Of courses, the bottom line is, ANY review is a good one, if it gets your book and your name in front of readers, and makes them want to grab a copy. I hope ALL of yours do that for you! (And for the rest of us, too.)

    I’m so glad you shared this with us today. Things have slowed down here over the last month, and part of that’s because I’ve been AWOL. Will be posting on that later today. Welcome back! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Marcia

      As I mentioned to Skye the reviewers I’m referring to are ones with sites that receive gratis copies in exchange for reviews. Professionals, for my purpose, are ones who get paid by others to review books, not paid by the author. They are under an even higher obligation to present a cogent, insightful review.

      I agree that plot details (that is, twists, turns, surprises, reveals) should not be divulged. Story, on the other hand is fine with me—even necessary. ‘John finds a wallet, it leads him to a decades-old murder mystery.’

      As you said, the particulars of character, writing style, flow, etc. are subjective to both the reviewer and the reader of the review. I like these things. They, along with the basic concept of the story, tell me something about the acumen of the writer, which in turn helps me to decide if I’d like to spend my time invested in the book.

      Indeed, your bottom line is exactly right – any review that entices a reader to read your book is a good one!

      Speedy recovery, my friend.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Of course, your distinctions between professionals and those paid by an author are exactly right. I wasn’t even thinking of those who get paid by authors, because I’ve never done that, nor have I ever accepted that. Really, I think I’ve only received 2 or 3 free books, even, and I made that clear in my reviews. I just tell folks that I read a good book, and why I liked it. BUT, I do think that when evaluating the review itself, it’s the person writing, more than their status as a reviewer. I’ve read professionals in magazines and newspapers, whose reviewing style left me cold. Yep…subjective, for sure. One person’s writing/reviewing works for me, and another’s doesn’t.

        I’m really glad this review made you feel good for all the right reasons, and that it brought out things you haven’t seen anyone else mention. That kind of thing makes you realize why you write, doesn’t it? And I hope it sells a ton more books for ya, too.

        Thanks for your well-wishes. You can’t keep me down. (Yet.) 😀 I’ll be back here before you know it.

        Liked by 1 person

        • BTW, I read the review, and though it does go into more detail than I prefer, it still is an EXCELLENT review, and very well written. I love the particular quotes he pulled out of your book, too. They were perfect to whet the curiosity of readers. This guy could change my mind on longer reviews. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

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