A Book Review of When I’m Gone by Emily Bleek
How to treat a book review? Having written one real book review and read through a few, I have come to the question of how to treat a book review. Do I give my own opinion? Whether it is favourable or not? Am I expected to write only positive things and a few polite constructive ideas? Should I then not review the books I don’t like? Should I perhaps write reviews only on the books I can recommend? This leaves me in two minds about When I’m Gone. How should I treat a story of severe loss – death – and coming to terms with it? How should I treat a writer that clearly has faced the real possibility of her own death? I have to respect Emily Bleek for what she has done. I am glad she is writing. The plot is pretty plausible. After a slow start it also picks up towards the end. There are enough twists and turns in the story to make it interesting.
How did When I’m Gone treat me? It gave me some good hours of easy reading. It made me cry towards the end. It let me guess what was coming. It put me to sleep a couple of times. (Or was it the cream cake instead?) It made me feel cosy with the unassuming stereotypical characters. It made me happy when the main characters were empowered towards the end. It did not rob me with the 6 or so dollars I paid for it.
Was When I’m Gone a treat? No, not for me, but I can see that it is a treat for some readers. My expectations were high, but I am really looking at the subject from the other side. And I have not been lucky – I was left behind. I would have liked a little bit more faith in the main character, but then Emily Bleek too was looking at Luke from the other side – thinking about her own possible death.
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing, Seattle
IMO, you should give your opinion, good or not. If you don’t care for the book, you can say that plainly w/o unnecessary meanness. If the technical aspects (grammer, etc) are really bad, that is a problem, but a little mistake here or there is not a deal-breaker for me. If you are reviewing as part of a promotional tour and feel you cannot give a positive review, most tour operators will give you the option of simply posting the book information w/o a review. Many book reviewers post a policy that states something to the effect that they accept books for review w/the proviso that they do not guarantee a positive review.
Sorry to hear you didn’t like the book you were reviewing. But there are many more books in the sea….er, make that the library! :
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The book was ok, but not a treat.