A series where we ask the reviewers what does it for them, and why.
Writers – you do not want to miss this …
I started reviewing on Amazon and Goodreads back in 2013/14. I was not very confident and basically wrote a few lines about whether I liked a book or not. I then started following Katherine Everett’s Best Crime Books and More (http://www.bestcrimebooksandmore.co.uk/) and Vicki Wilkinson’s I Love reading (http://ilovereading1.weebly.com/) blogs/ pages on Facebook. Kat approached me to be a Guest Reviewer on her blog at the start of 2015. She then suggested I take a leap and go solo. May 2015 CrimeBookJunkie was created and with some guidance/support from the amazing blogging community out there, I have not looked back since!
What’s the best thing about blog-reviewing?
For me, it is having the opportunity to shout-out about the less known, but equally/more talented authors amongst us readers. I love when someone reads my review and then goes and buys the book! I have also made some wonderful, lifelong friends through fellow bloggers and of course, I have had the opportunity to meet some amazing authors! #NotAStalker
The author/blogger/reading community is absolutely amazing. It really has made a huge difference in my life and I hope that I can carry on doing this for years to come!
Give a shout out to a blogger who deserves a bigger readership …
Oh wow! There are so many! Of course my #Twinnie: Sharon Bairden of Chapter In My Life (https://chapterinmylife.wordpress.com/) but also my #BBFF Sarah Hardy of By The Letter Book Reviews (https://bytheletterbookreviews.com/)
I want to mention the whole #BlogSquad, but if people follow me on Twitter or Facebook they will learn soon enough who this fabulous gang of Bloggers are!
Ebook or print? What are your views on the pricing of each?
Interesting question. I love print books. Always have, always will. Nothing beats the feel of a cover or the smell of the pages. (#NotAWeirdo) I have to be honest though, my kindle has been great for commutes or travel as I can store as many books as I want and still have luggage space!
I am always surprised when I see a kindle book costing more than a paperback. I have paid up to £10 for a Kindle copy, but it would have to be a book I really wanted. Of course, if the paperback copy was cheaper – I would buy it. Even though I get a large numbers of books free as a blogger, I still purchase those books I love and want the final version of – it is an expensive habit – but one I am not willing to break!
How important is the cover? Give a shout out to the cover that has done it for you recently.
OMFG – I love covers! Next to characters, covers are what draw me to a book. I have two that I want to share. One is my all-time favourite cover because of the emotions it evokes and the story it reveals – that is, Graham Smith’s Snatched From Home http://amzn.to/2cZ95VC
The other cover is Craig Robertson’s Murderabilia http://amzn.to/2czpd4K —now THAT is an awesome cover. It carries the same imagery for me in terms of emotions evoked and the story we will find within the pages. WOW! Just WOW!
What draws you to an author that was previously unknown to you? (The blurb, the cover, the first page, word of mouth, or something else?)
I have come across a lot of author’s via other bloggers and reviewers. I then google/head over to amazon and check out the book’s they have written – the blurb and cover usually cinch the deal. However, I have broken my own #CoverSnobbery and read a few books I may have passed over in previous times – one being, Alan Jones’ Blue Wicked. It turned out to be a brilliant book and I became a fan!
Various book clubs and Twitter is another place where I have found author’s I have never heard of. I love coming across a #NewAuthorForMe. It is exciting to be able to read a series that others rave about and still have loads to look forward to!
The first page has drawn you in … what keeps you there till The End?
Oooooh! For me, the pace has to be good and even with the story – it does not always have to be fast, but it has to build up the suspense or I soon grow bored. I bloody love twists as well! If I am screaming OMFG more than once….I am on to a winner!
Do you finish every book you start?
So far, I have. Though there have been only a few books I really struggled with. I have been fortunate enough lately to have come across some pretty awesome reads. I think because I am more selective now in what I accept (due to the sheer volume of requests) I have chosen those books which I think will capture my interest.
Any trends in publishing that put you off/ you are happy to see continue?
I like amazon’s recommendations emails, BookBub, the use of social media with author’s being more interactive with their readers as well as Podcasts. However, it does annoy me when an author spams my Blog Facebook page with books I would not even be interested in reading, let alone support — #Erotica I am looking at you! Or when they friend request me and then bombard my personal page with links to their book–#Blocked. I appreciate that author’s want exposure, however if bloggers started posting their blog links on author’s pages, well I am sure they would get annoyed – unless their book was being reviewed of course! I also like a lot of the digital publisher’s out there: shout out to Bookouture and Orenda! Quite a lot of my favourite crime authors have gone digital!
I am pretty flexible and open-minded on this front. I like to see new things and those that don’t interest me- well I just ignore!
Any plans to totally turn the tables and write a book of your own?
I scrapped the original piece of work I was doing when I spoke to another author who pointed out some gaps and inconsistencies. I am pretty much back to the start – although there are parts which may be useable once I sit down and just get started. Plan is to get back at in in October when real-life work and other things settle down a bit. I have also signed up for Crime & Publishment 2017 (Woohoo) – so even if I don’t have a finished version by then – I had better have something more than my name on a piece of paper!
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