I’ve always wanted to be a book reviewer, but when I was younger I saw this as an unattainable goal, like being a celebrity or something. I thought to myself “who cares what I think about books? Just because I read a bunch of them doesn’t mean I’m in any position to give a critical opinion on them and then expect people to actually care about said opinion”. But then the internet happened (I was probably around 12 or 13 when I first started to explore ‘the web’) and the opportunity to broadcast my opinion suddenly became very easy, and very attainable. So, after much (much) procrastination, I started this blog in 2013.
As my blog followers grew, I was delightfully shocked at the fact that others cared about my bookish thoughts, so I continued blogging with enthusiasm, as I do now. And when I started reviewing books on air at the CBC, again I was tickled at this exciting new development in my bookish career, and so honoured to have been given this special platform. But even when people would ask what I do, I would hesitate to say I’m a book reviewer, because I didn’t have any book reviews IN PRINT. I would proudly call myself a book blogger, but I always felt a bit sheepish using the title ‘book reviewer’ so I avoided it when people asked. As way of explanation, I’m a general Luddite, and have always preferred paper to screens, so the idea of having a review on paper would mean I was truly a book reviewer in my own mind (as strange as this may sound to some people).
Well I’m excited to announce that I recently had my first book review printed; it can be found in this month’s Alberta Views Magazine, and you can also find a copy of the review online should you wish to see it now. I reviewed Sharon Butala‘s second memoir titled Where I Live Now: A Journey Through Love and Loss to Healing and Hope. Spoiler alert-I really enjoyed it! I do encourage my Alberta readers to subscribe to Alberta Views though, they’ve got a ton of great book reviews each month plus really interesting articles of relevance to our province and beyond.
So do I consider myself a true book reviewer now? Yes, I most certainly do. But I’m curious-do my fellow book bloggers out there consider themselves to be book reviewers, or do they shy away from that title like I once did? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!
Wow, congrats! That’s big time! I do consider myself a book reviewer…I’ve actually never even considered that seeing my book reviews in print could be a thing. Maybe it’s going to be a new goal!
Aim for the stars haha
Congrats! I do not consider myself a book reviewer. I have reviewed a few books on horseaddict but they are mostly horse related books. And I just prattle on about what I liked or found useful about the book so that can hardly be considered a true “review”.
Haha aren’t all reviews just people prattling on though? Lol
Yay for you! I always think it’s exciting when I see my fellow book bloggers reviewed for “real”.
Like you (before), I don’t consider myself a book reviewer… just a book blogger. But I shouldn’t say “just”, because really they are just different things. One is not necessarily better than the other, except that one of them usually involves getting paid. 🙂
Yah that’s a good point, being in print usually means you were paid a bit ( not a lot though, like, if I broke it down into hours, it was probably less than minimum wage ) but it’s so fun it’s hard to call it work!
And that’s what counts! 🙂
Ooh, well done! Yes, like you, I consider myself a book blogger, not a reviewer. To me, you have to review on a recognised platform – not your own blog – to count as a reviewer; i.e., someone else must want to publish your reviews. I’d have counted you as a reviewer from the time you got your radio slot though – I don’t feel quite as strongly as you that only paper counts. Congrats! 😀
That’s wonderful, congratulations! In my mind a book reviewer is is print or online at some “official” website like The Millions or something – so I am of the same mind as you about that. I call myself a book blogger. And I’m totally fine with that! I just like to share my enthusiasm about books I really like or love, and don’t want to be bogged down with too much critical analysis, which reminds me of being in school. 🙂 Anyway, hurray for you on the published review!
Thank you 🙂
I definitely consider myself a book reviewer, but in academia it doesn’t count for anything, so I still see it as a “hobby.” I used to feel like reviewing was more important when authors and publishers sent me books to review, but I’m one person and can only read so fast. Therefore, I just read my own books now (for the most part) and enjoy the community aspect of blogging instead.
Thanks so much!
This is awesome! I recently started reviewing books and movies on my blog. Congrats on the persistence. BTW, read A Hope More Powerful than the Sea. Incredible book and a true story as well. I reviewed it recently.
Thanks for the kind words and recommendation!