Five Years of Book Reviews by Clive
This post first appeared on the Whispering Stories blog and I’m grateful to Stacey for allowing me to reproduce it.
Five years ago this month I started reviewing books for Whispering Stories, something that I could never imagine doing. At school I was always a reluctant writer; numbers were much more fun. During my working life I wrote a lot of letters and reports but they were all factual and in the early years written with the support of some good typists. So how did I get involved in reviewing?
I’ve always had a book ‘on the go’. It was usually a library book and generally featured crime, war or adventure stories. Some took me a few days to read, others would take a few weeks.
For Christmas 2015 our children gave us Kindle readers and around the same time Julie struck up an online friendship with Stacey who had helped publicise Julie’s first novel, Long Shadows. Stacey was looking for reviewers and I was offered a free gangster novel in exchange for a review of 250-500 words. The book was enjoyable. I cannot say the same about the writing process but with some tweaks from Julie and Stacey, I did it. Since then it has become a way of life and my 134th review has just been submitted.
Reviewing books gives me an opportunity to read books at no cost. I do have some choice in the books that I take but even so, I have read and enjoyed many books that I would otherwise not have considered. Many are from new authors although I have also read a number of republished classics including Elizabeth Gaskill’s North and South and Kafka’s The Trial. The discipline of knowing that I have to spend an hour or so writing the review certainly sharpens my mind while I am reading.
I just hope that the next five years of review reading are just as enjoyable.
If you want to join Clive and the other reviewers on the team at Whispering Stories, please follow the link at the top of this post!