Book review vs. book discussion

12 Aug

A while back, the very smart Jessica of Racy Romance Reviews asked, “Do author comments have a chilling effect on review discussions?” The ensuing thread is all kinds of interesting and thought provoking, and I heartily recommend braving the hundred plus comments to truly savor all the insight given there.

That post and the subsequent discussion addressed something that has been present in the dark recesses of my mind for a while, but it didn’t crystallize into something at least semi-coherent until a week or so ago—and this epiphany was spurred by orannia’s Broken Wing Challenge. (Original post, the challenge, and the discussion with review links).

Here is the result of all that cogitation:

As far as I am concerned, reviews are for potential readers—which is one of the reasons I avoid spoiling the plot as much as I can*—so I don’t really expect comments from people who have read the book. Mind, I enjoy them, quite a bit**, but I don’t expect them nor, indeed, foster them in review threads.

On the other hand, I really love discussing what worked about a book or a series—or an author!—with other readers, and find that there are fewer such conversations going, in the blogs I visit regularly, than I would like.

All this has me wondering whether readers here would like to engage in discussions about books I’ve reviewed—either in the review itself with some sort of warning (i.e., “comment threads contain spoilers, reader beware”) or the occasional discussion thread for say, one specific book or a trilogy, etc.

Crazy?

Superfluous?

Redundant?

What say you?

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* exceptions being excessive violence or gore, or graphic descriptions of rape, or sexual abuse of minors, etc. that I think may be hot buttons or triggers for an unsuspecting reader—those I do my best to warn about

** especially when I get an “I’ve read this, you nailed it, good review”—but then I’m as vain as the next person

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