We have put our novel out there to several places for review, and so far have received nothing less than 4 stars and glowing reports. One of our favorites was from http://www.featheredquill.com/ who gave us 5 out of 5 stars and said, "A heartwarming story of family love, the perfect book to share between a mother and daughter."
However, I fully expect to get a negative review at some point. I have been in enough book clubs to know how varied readers tastes are. There have been widely popular and critically acclaimed books I didn't like, and much less favorably accepted novels I have loved. Same for movies, clothing, food, etc. What makes this country so great is freedom of choice and expression.
I have a review blog myself (http://etjrmbach.blogspot.com/ - please keep checking it out) and review for Rebeccas Reads (http://www.rebeccasreads.com/), and I always try to be fair even if I don't love a book. I think most reviewers do the same.
A friend recently copied me a on a review and subsequent author backlash. Sadly, the review commended the author's story but pointed out the distraction of severe grammatical errors. I think most readers would appreciate this. The author did not! Sadly, she embarrased herself and other authors. I am personally thrilled with all the new review sites that will review Indie books. A shout out to all of you!!
For writers, and any other kind of businessmen/women, let this article be a shining example of how NOT TO handle criticism: http://booksandpals.blogspot.com/2011/03/greek-seaman-jacqueline-howett.html
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We'd love to know how much stock you put into reviews (whether it's books, movies, places to eat, etc). Let us know in the comments below.