Friday, August 15, 2008

My Critque Process

So, the idea behind this site is to provide some kind of rating for all the books I read. More than anything I am going to use it to keep track of what I thought and why as well as what I have read. So let's begin then...

One of the things I really can't stand about reading reviews is that nobody will ever step up and publish a basic set of what they are about or what they are reviewing or why. My site, my choice. I will publish just such a thing here. So, how do I rate a book? Like this:

  1. Probably the most important thing in my evaluation of a book is how easy it was to read. Not so much about it being easy subject matter but were the sentences well structured? Were the thoughts clear and concise? From reading page to page, did I get a sense that the author knew where we were going? If I think it is easy to read I'll give it 5 points. If I think it's not, it gets less. If I can't follow it at all... you get the idea.
  2. Subject matter is the next most important thing to me. If the book is about what it says it's about then this is good. Ancillary stuff is good sometimes and sometimes not. When I think it rambles away with no real purpose I get irritated. This, again, is rated from 5 (best) to 1 (worst). This applies mostly to nonfiction. In fiction, if the story just rocks then it gets a 5 and a 1 of I am unable to tell what the story really was.
  3. Next I would have to say editing is a truly important part of the book-process. If you think of it as a conversation between reader and writer, the editor's job becomes paramount in important as they mediate this one way dialog. Spelling and grammar are essential. Again, 5 to 1 scale.
  4. (Completely subjective part here) Did I like the story? If, for example, the story is Dune-like in my mind and I read it whenever I am bored of reading other things then it gets a 5. Should the story bear any resemblance to An American Tragedy or A Tale of Two Cities, they are headed for lower scores.

So, given this, I think it's time to get to it. Currently working on my first book and am hopeful to get a writeup here in the next week or so. God Bless.

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