Book Blog Discussions – How do you write reviews for a book you think is just okay?

March 17, 2017 Beyond the Books, Discussion Challenge 2

Reading Challenges: Book Blogger Discussion

How do you write reviews for a book you think is just okay?

Let me be even more specific because this is something I came up against last night. I haven’t yet written my review and I’m still fuddling with the idea of how. This book is a non-fiction about gardening. Just having bought a house with an actual yard, a huge freaking yard, I’m super excited about gardening. I don’t have a black thumb but my green thumb days are way behind me. I don’t even know why but that’s why I was so excited about this book!

I found this lovely book on Netgalley and jumped at the chance to review it. Sadly, by chapter three there was so much overwhelming information that my chest was hurting!

I think I have less of an idea on how to garden than I did before I opened the book. How can that be?!

So, I did not DNF, I wanted to see if I could glean anything from this that would be useful enough that I could start my garden. There are quite a few tips but by the end I knew this was not for the first time gardener.

I think I feel more comfortable when I DNF a book because I know my reasoning and I can explain to an author or publisher why I couldn’t get to the end. But this is another story. The verbiage is over my head, completely. She talks a lot about compost, which I get why you should start there, but I don’t even know how to compost! What’s funny is she talks about having anecdotes about her own gardening experience but this is so chock full of gardening science that I missed most of the anecdotes, sadly. I thought I would have enjoyed this more had I understand some of her foibles.

So, what do you do in circumstances when a book is good enough and you know it will be great for some, but just does not work for what you needed it for? I know in this case I needed something more like a KISS book and should have started with that but I like to jump before I look. Honestly, I think I’ve learned more on pinterest than I have in this book. It was a quick read but only because I started skimming after my chest started hurting.

I also realize that the author obviously knows quite a lot about gardening. By the cover and synopsis I thought that this was for beginners but I’m not sure if I was just overzealous and excited and HOPED that it was for beginners. Although the synopsis does not point to who the audience actually is.

In the end I think I’ll write a review that says exactly that. I’m going to have to find another book that will be able to help me from the ground up, so to speak. Maybe after I understand that I will be able to come back to this one and use it as reference.

Do you write reviews for books that you know are not right for you?

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

2 Responses to “Book Blog Discussions – How do you write reviews for a book you think is just okay?”

  1. Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight

    I’m dying at this line: “I think I have less of an idea on how to garden than I did before I opened the book.” Hahaha. But yeah, I think you should just write in your review exactly what you said here, that this book wasn’t for you because you’re a beginner but it would be good for anyone who __________. I sometimes do that even for fiction books that I recognize were well-written but simply not for me.
    Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight recently posted…Book Review: Warlock in Training (Studies in Demonology Book 1) by TJ NicholsMy Profile

    • Christina

      Thanks Kristen! It was a tough read but I know it’s full of great information. I just don’t know how to apply that information, yet. Probably not for a couple years yet. I hate writing reviews for books I didn’t like. It just gets me, still.

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