Reviewing books does not come readily to me. It requires more effort than if I were to discuss a topic related to photography or share an unusual travel experience.
For instance, I have to make notes. I don’t write in my books so I’d scribble on strips of paper to mark certain passages. Often I have to re-read several pages to recall why I had stuck bits of paper in a certain part of the book. I always research online to see what others have had to say about the book or to understand more about the subject matter.
I’m not part of a book club or literary community of any sorts. At best, I follow a handful of blogs dedicated to books because their authors’ taste are similar to mine. Most of the time, the book reviews that I write generate less comments and likes than other topics like travel and food.
Yet I persist in writing book reviews. Why do I bother?
- I tend to read too quickly. Reviewing books forces me to slow down and to reflect more as I note down my thoughts.
- Someone took months or even years to create a book that touched or affected me. Something that made me laugh and/or cry; inspired or bewildered me; prompted me to question what I take for granted or am unaware of. The least I can do is to spread the word about why this is a great book in the hope that it’d make a difference to someone else too. Plus it makes me happy when someone reads a book that I recommended and tells me later that he/she enjoyed it.
- Because writing a book review doesn’t come as readily to me as discussing photography, I welcome the challenge. I also think that this helps improve my writing.
What about you? If you review books, what motivates you to do so?