I am delighted to welcome author Larissa Reinhart on to my blog today as part of her blog tour.
A Composition in Murder is Larissa’s new novel and is available to buy now over at Amazon UK
and is published by Henery Press (15 Nov. 2016).
So, without further ado, I will pass you over to Larissa who is talking about how to best write a book review . . .
The Easy Way to Write a Review: Mad Libs-Style
Reviews give the reader a roadmap for their book journey. Reviews are important in helping readers find new books and authors. With so many books out there, it’s hard to take a chance on an author or series you don’t know. Like you, I’m an avid reader, so I look at the reviews when checking out a new-to-me author or new-to-me series.
So I really appreciate it when readers leave reviews. I can’t even express how much it means to me when a reader writes a few (or many) words about one of my stories. Who has time for that?! It’s incredible the story carried them to their computer to share their feelings with the world. I’m so grateful!
We all know these reviews are critical to a book or series’ success. Even sites like Bookbub won’t let authors and publishers add their on-sale titles unless they have a minimum number of reviews.
But it does take time and folks are so busy! And sometimes it’s intimidating when you liked the story, but aren’t confident about wording the specifics. How about a template for reviewing so you can give your own roadmap for someone’s reading journey?
Amazon requires at least 20 words. Authors appreciate words like “awesome,” “life-changing,” or “couldn’t put it down” (or my personal favorite “almost peed my pants laughing so hard”), but you’ve got to stretch it to twenty words.
Let’s make this easy.
If you received an advanced reader copy or were given a book to review, you must include the disclaimer “I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review” in your review.
If you give away anything important in the story, please write **Spoiler** so you…don’t spoil the story for readers.
Amazon asks you to title the review. If you can’t think of anything, you can always repeat the number of stars you clicked. “5 Stars!” is a swoon-worthy title. “4 Stars” is wonderful. Found the book meh but would give the author another chance? How about “Not my favorite but still looking forward to the next book.”
Here’s a big hint. I often look at the book’s blurb (description by the author/publisher) to remind me of names and places before writing my review.
Mad Libs-Style Review One:
Book title is set in town, country, and/or time period. Main Character Name is a young girl, unlucky in love, actor, anteater, alien, gun-for-hire, computer analyst, sexy vampire. I found her/him/it funny, believable, adorable, frightening.
I enjoyed the witty dialogue, historical descriptions, how realistic the characters were, twisting plot, hot sex, sweet love story, exciting pace.
Mad Libs-Style Review Two:
Main Character works as a detective, lawyer, nurse, taxi driver, librarian, grim reaper and lives in place and/or time period. They are introduced, work with, meet through an event Other Main Character(s). Which leads them to fall in love, hate each other, rob a bank, defeat their enemy, solve the mystery.
I liked character, writing, setting, plot but less/more description, less/more suspense, less/more violence, less/more vulgar language would have made it better, more realistic, more exciting. I would recommend it to my friends and family, fans of a similar author/type of book, adults but not teens, teens but not children, young adults but not older adults, everyone.
Easy Mad Libs-Style Review Three:
Main Character was charming, naive, dissatisfied with life, rich, unlucky in love, hated their job in the beginning of Book Title, but after learning they had superpowers, meeting Other Character, finding out their president is plotting against the country, learn they’re not the chosen one, come across a dead body they overcame many obstacles, learned to love again, learned about themselves, grew into a better person, defeated The Villain.
The setting was realistic, futuristic, lush, fun, interesting and the story made me laugh, cry, anxious to keep reading. I loved/liked/enjoyed/loved-to-hate Main Character, Other Character, the Villain, the setting, the plot, the writing.
Reviews are so important to authors and we appreciate the feedback, good or bad. I know it’s extra time out of your day to post your thoughts and I’m always grateful for that consideration.
By sharing your thoughts & feelings on a book, you can make a big difference in the life of a book or series. For all authors out there, thank you!
Do you already write reviews? Why or why not? Do you use reviews to help you decide whether to buy a book or series?
Well obviously I write reviews (d’oh!) but I have certainly picked some tips up today so thank you Larissa, it’s bee great having you here and I wish you all the best with your new book xx
About the author . . .
A 2015 Georgia Author of the Year finalist for best mystery, best-selling author Larissa Reinhart writes with a particular focus on sassy female characters with a penchant for trouble. Find her at larissareinhart.com and sign up for her e-newsletter (http://smarturl.it/larissanewsletter) for reader news and giveaways. She’s also active on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/RisWrites), Instagram (http://instagram.com/larissareinhart), and has an active friendly street team she calls Mystery Minions on a private Facebook page.
Look for Larissa and her family on HGTV’s House Hunters International in the “Living for the Weekend in Nagoya, Japan” episode, airing August 31 and again on October 21, 2016.
Larissa writes the Maizie Albright Star Detective and the Cherry Tucker Mystery series. The first Maizie Albright mystery, 15 MINUTES, will debut winter 2017. The first in the Cherry Tucker series, PORTRAIT OF A DEAD GUY (2012), is a 2012 Daphne du Maurier finalist, 2012 The Emily finalist, and 2011 Dixie Kane Memorial winner. The sixth mystery, A COMPOSITION IN MURDER, releases November 15, 2016, with a novella, THE VIGILANTE VIGNETTE, in the cozy mystery anthology, MIDNIGHT MYSTERIES, out September 15, 2016.
Larissa considers herself lucky to have taught English in Japan, escaped a ferocious monkey in Thailand, studied archaeology in Egypt, and survived teaching high school history in the US. However, adopting her daughters from China has been her most rewarding experience. After growing up in the Midwest and spending her adult years in Georgia, she’s back in Nagoya, Japan with her husband, daughters, the occasional fish, and Biscuit, a Cairn Terrier.