Write a #BOOKREVIEW in August! A great post from Terry Tyler to encourage us all to write book reviews.

August 2016 is Write An Amazon Review Month! By @TerryTyler4 #AugustReviews

 

On Monday 25th July, book blogger Rosie Amber wrote this post encouraging readers and writers alike to post a short review on Amazon for any book they’ve read and enjoyed ~ following this up, Terry Tyler is starting this initiative along with other writer-bloggers including Rosie, Cathy from Between The Lines, Barb Taub, Shelley Wilson and Alison Williams.

 

The idea is that, from August 1st, everyone who reads this uses their Amazon account to post just one review on one book that they’ve read (but feel free to carry on if you get in the swing!).  You don’t even have to have read it recently, it can be any book you’ve read, any time.  The book does not have to have been purchased from Amazon, though if it is you get the ‘Verified Purchase’ tag on it; however, if you download all your books via Kindle Unlimited, as many do these days, they don’t show the VP tag, anyway.

 

Remember, this isn’t the Times Literary Supplement, it’s Amazon, where ordinary people go to choose their next £1.99 Kindle book.  No one expects you to write a thousand word, in-depth critique; I don’t know about you, but I’m more likely to read one short paragraph or a couple of lines saying what an average reader thought of a book, than a long-winded essay about the pros and cons of the various literary techniques used.  Yes, those are welcome too (!), but no more so than a few words saying “I loved this book, I was up reading it until 3am”, or “I loved Jim and Vivien and the dialogue was so realistic”, or whatever!

 

Why should you write a review?

They help book buyers make decisions.  Don’t you read the reviews on Trip Advisor before deciding on a hotel, or any site from which you might buy an item for practical use?  Book reviews are no different.

If the book is by a self-published author, or published by an independent press, the writers have to do all their promotion and marketing themselves ~ reviews from the reading public is their one free helping hand.

The amount of reviews on Amazon helps a book’s visibility (allegedly).  If you love a writer’s work and want others to do so, too, this is the best possible way of making this happen.

It’s your good deed for the day, and will only take five minutes!

 

Off we go, then!  A few more pointers:

If you need any help with writing your review, do click on Rosie’s post, above.

A review can be as short as one word.  The shortest one I have is just two🙂

You don’t have to put your name to the review, as your Amazon ‘handle’ can be anything you like.

No writer expects all their reviews to be 5* and say the book is the best thing ever written; there is a star rating guide on Rosie’s post.

Would you like to tell the Twittersphere about your review?  If so, tweet the link to it with the hashtag #AugustReviews ~ and thank you!  I will do one blog post a week featuring these links: The #AugustReviews Hall of Fame (thank you, Barb!).

 

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#TuesdayBookBlog ‘What Tim Knows’ by Wendy Janes #RBRT #BookReview

Reviewed by me as part of Rosie Amber’s Review Team.

This wonderful collection of short stories takes six characters from Wendy Janes’ novel ‘What Jennifer Knows’ and gives each of them a canvas to themselves. The stories link back cleverly to the novel and give further insights into the characters’ lives and behaviour. Jennifer, the heroine of ‘What Jennifer Knows’, appears in every story at different points in her life. Even though the stories are entwined with the novel, they can be read as a standalone volume with great enjoyment too.
The fifth story, ‘The Perfect Family’, explores the shifting loyalties and cruelties of childhood friendship and how a child’s perception of her parents can change in a crisis.
The emotional gem, for me, is ‘What Tim Knows’. Wendy Janes has a real understanding of what it feels like for a child to be different and how this affects the behaviour and feelings of others too. The closing scene between Tim and his mother Blythe is truly heart-wrenching.
I have no hesitation in recommending this fantastic collection and hope it will send new readers in search of the novel it is so much part of.

Link to ‘What Tim Knows’ on Amazon UK

 

What Tim Knows, and other stories by [Janes, Wendy]

IRISH CHARM New collection of ten short stories

This new collection of ten short stories can be dipped into throughout your day – a bit like a box of chocolates but without the calories.

Many of the stories have soft centres but some have more bite and crunch. You will find tales of romance, family life, love and loss, friendship and cosy crime. Feast and enjoy!

 

Link to Irish Charm on Amazon

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Wednesday Wing – Guard Against Your Amazon Reviews Being Removed #wwwblogs @TerryTyler4

An interesting article here from Terry Tyler about reviews – full of common sense and good advice.

Rosie Amber

This week on Wednesday Wing…

Writers/Reviewers: Guard against your Amazon reviews being removed.

Terry Tyler offers advice and thoughts on the matter.

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There has been much blogged about lately on the subject of Amazon removing book reviews. I am no authority on this subject, but believe their principle is to counteract the growing number of fake reviews; writers who cannot get them any other way (I will not go into the reasons for this right now!) have perhaps made use of the various sites around the internet that sell five star reviews. The owners of such sites do not read the books, but just post reviews. I saw one that had posted around a hundred on the same day, all of which consisted of the five star rating and one word, ‘brillent’, which I imagine was supposed to say ‘brilliant’; I suspect many of these sites are run by scammers…

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#TuesdayBookBlog Murder on the Tor by Frances Evesham #RBRT #BookReview

Link to Murder on the Tor on Amazon UK

 

Reviewed by me as part of Rosie Amber’s Review Team.

Murder on the Tor is the latest Exham on Sea Mystery by Frances Evesham. There are two previous titles and they can be read as standalones or as part of a series.

Murder on the Tor is well-paced and written in an easy conversational style. It has an intricate plot involving amber beads, a glimpse of the seventies, dangerous jealousies and homemade chocolates, all set in the glorious Devon countryside.

Our two detectives, Libby and Max, continue their tentative romance from an earlier story, while following a trail of confusing clues about a new murder. In the end, the mist lifts and the truth is revealed, not only about the Murder on the Tor, but also about Libby’s deceased husband, Trevor and his gang of crooked friends.

My favourite character has to be Bear, the gentle giant of a dog. The account of how Bear manages to help a young girl communicate is very touching.

For readers looking for a quick cosy mystery – with hidden depths – I thoroughly recommend this delightful read.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#TuesdayBookBlog Murder on the Levels by Frances Evesham #RBRT #BOOKREVIEW

 

Murder on the Levels by Frances Evesham is the second book I have reviewed as part of Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team. I choose this book from a long list as it sounded so much fun from the book description. I wasn’t disappointed as you can see from my review below.

 

Murder on the Levels is a delightfully quirky cosy mystery by Frances Evesham set in the West Country.

The central character, Libby Forest, is warmly portrayed; a baker of cakes and chocolate-maker by profession, she is unwittingly drawn into a murder mystery and detective work, not for the first time.

I loved all the musical references, my favourite being Libby’s recollection of her recorder playing at school being,
“a regular series of high-pitched squeals, like a dawn chorus of cats…”

There are poisoned cyclists, cars driven badly and much too fast, pets with definite opinions, an enigmatic love-interest called Max, and various characters we suspect are not as respectable as they seem, all contributing to an enormous web of mystery and humour. Like Mandy’s tattoos, all is not as it seems, and when the resolution comes, it is as welcome as it is unexpected.

Link to Frances’ author page on Amazon

#TuesdayBookBlog #RBRT The Code for Killing by William Savage #BookReview

I have recently become a member of Rosie Amber’s book review team (#RBRT) and the first book I have reviewed as part of the team is

The Code for Killing: a mystery set in Georgian England by William Savage.

I picked this book because of its intriguing title and the bits of code shown on the cover. I thought it looked both unusual and entertaining – and this certainly turned out to be true. Here is my review:

The Code for Killing is a fascinating historical mystery set in Georgian England. It is the second novel in a series and there are fairly frequent references to the previous mystery, but the novel can be read and enjoyed without any previous knowledge of the first book.

The main character is Dr Adam Bascom – a man who, for all his intellect and skills, has very little understanding of women, much to his mother’s despair and also amusement. Adam relies on quite a few women to help him solve the mystery, including the delightful and spirited Miss Sophia LaSalle. I do hope there will be a sequel as I would love to hear more from this character in particular.

The mystery is set in the turbulent times of the late 1700s and there are many details about the political situations of the period, such as the riots in Norfolk, that add greatly to the vividness of the storytelling. The characters come from all walks of life – we meet the wise Sir Daniel Fouchard, Miss Phoebe Farnsworth the actress and the wonderfully named pair of sailors, Peg and Dobbin, to mention a few among many gems. The details of medical conditions and treatments at that time are described in interesting detail and I was very amused when London was described as ‘noisy and crowded’ by Adam on his welcome return to Aylsham – some things don’t change!

All in all, a really good, well-written story, with great richness of detail. Thoroughly recommended!

 

Link to The Code for Killing on Amazon UK