I never used to understand people who wrote book reviews. You’ve already read the book, so writing a review isn’t going to help you decide whether to read it, and it’s an awful lot of effort.
But I’ve spent some time thinking about the matter, and I’ve concluded that there are five good reasons and two bad reasons to write a book review.
Good reasons to write a book review
1) You have an opinion
You have an opinion. In fact, you have many opinions. They’re all brilliant, and sharing them with the world will force everyone to acknowledge how brilliant you are. And, perhaps more importantly, how right you are.
I have a long-haired black cat and pale green carpet. It didn’t take me long to discover that I have three options: I can vacuum every day, I can buy a darker coloured rug to cover the carpet so the cat fluff won’t be so obvious, or I can live with a carpet perpetually peppered with clumps of black fur.
I don’t love vacuuming enough to want to do it daily. I don’t love it at all. In fact, my optimal frequency of vacuuming is never.
My first choice would have been to buy a darker-coloured rug, but the number of rugs both I and my husband like is the same as the number of tortoises making a killing on Wall Street.
When I was a kid, my parents lived near a lovely couple with a large garden who rarely (possibly never) mowed their lawn. The result was a sprawling jungle of knee- or possibly thigh-high grass stalks, intermingled with daisies, dandelions, dock, clover, and ubiquitous bees.
In other words, paradise.
A bunch of neighbourhood children used to play there, and it never occurred to us that not everyone was equally delighted by the unmown lawn.
I said I wasn’t going to write about writing (much), and you’ll see I’m not. I’m writing about dragons, and that’s entirely different.
The seed of the idea for my current work in progress comes to me when I’m watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer. My thought process goes approximately like this: “Wow, fantasy is more fun than real life. I want to write a book about dragons.”
I didn’t say it made sense.
Having made this decision, I have to deal with the big question faced by everyone who decides to write about dragons: How do I make them fly? My physics is a little rusty, but I’m guessing any creature as big as a truck would need football field-sized wings, and if its muscles could even get up the strength to move them, flapping would snap its bones in two.