Why I’m Bad at Writing Book Reviews; Plus, a Book Review!

Okay, so today I’m going to write you a short book review because I read things.  Lots of things.  No big surprise, I know.  Two English degrees and I’ve been working as a bookseller for most likely way too long.  I read books, I love books, I know books.

Now, confession time: I am terrible at writing book reviews(not a surprise, assuming you read the title of this post).  I blame this on the fact that I have the shortest memory ever, and also on the fact that I look online and read these fabulous gigantic things that are essentially books by themselves (short books—maybe kids books?) and they’re funny and thought provoking (I laugh, I cry, I make scrunchy angry faces) and they’re also a little daunting.  I cannot for the life of me write these type of book reviews.  I don’t know why, they just automatically give me intense writers block and then I suddenly become overcome with this feeling of sadness because clearly you’re a failure of a writer (and a reader) if you can’t write a witty book review.  Why did I bother with that MA?

I cannot be the only writer who suffers from this.  And I swear, I’m fine when I’m working at the bookstore.  I can babble on for hours about books I love.  I even had customers (a husband and wife) film me once to send to their mother for whom they were buying the book (The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society) because my review of it was that amazing and entertaining that they made me say it all over again to record on their cell phone.  They knew that she would absolutely want to read the book (Which is excellent and will absolutely give you the warm fuzzies.  Everyone needs the warm fuzzies once in a while.) if she heard me rambling on and on about how amazing it was.  That said, I did think it was a bit weird to be recorded (it was a very nice couple, maybe ten years older than me…though now I’m having awful Borders flashbacks…) but, for the record, I happen to be that enthusiastic about that particular book…and therefore my review probably was that spectacular.  I have no idea if this woman ever read or liked the book, but that isn’t the point. Continue reading