The Trouble with Reviewing Books

This week over at Urban Fantasy Land, I'm posting review of Jaye Wells's Sabina Kane series. I'm reviewing all five books to coincide with the June 1st release of the fifth and final book in the series.

Writing book reviews is hard, but I find it especially difficult when I like the book. Book reviews shouldn't be gushing praise. But when a book is awesome what is there to talk about besides the love?

It's just as hard, if not worse, when I like the book but can see where it could have been improved. Reviewing and critiquing are not the same. And who am I to decide a published book needs to be improved? But I do think authors need to strive to be better, and critical reviews are part of that.

I've also found that not everyone agrees with my opinion. (Shock! Awe! *g*) For every part of a book I've found didn't work for me, someone else loves the book for that very same reason. I've tried gearing book reviews toward the right reader, but it's really like throwing daggers in the dark. So I've gone back to writing reviews to include what worked for me and what didn't, and if I think of ways the book could have been improved, I'll throw that in there too. I've also decided that to write a review and to discuss a book, I can't do it without spoilers. I've tried going spoiler-free in my reviews, but I feel like I'm just rewording the jacket copy. What's the point of that?

Above all, I just try to be honest and to be me.

Do you review books? What do you love & hate about it?