‘There are two kinds of idiots – those who don’t take action because they have received a threat, and those who think they are taking action because they have issued a threat.’ – Paulo Coelho

Hello there new visitors and followers. I can’t help but notice that my blog hits have gone up somewhat today, over 900% actually, but who’s counting?

I’m sure most of you can already guess what this post is going to be about.

I started reviewing books because I love to read, and I am always keen to practice my writing. To begin with it was just a hobby, something to fill up an empty evening. I only reviewed books I specifically wanted to read, which was great, but I started to want more.

Recently reviews have become a much bigger part of my life. I have started reviewing books for the publishing house where I work (check out issue 17 of Global magazine). I have also been offering my services to authors, when requested. My experience on the whole has been very positive. Reviewing for people gives me a chance to widen my connections, and most authors are happy to receive some honest feedback.

Note – most authors.

Today I had a very unpleasant experience with one author who had gifted me a book to review. After reading what was, on the whole not a very successful novel, I attempted to relate my honest opinion to the author in question. I was met with verbal abuse, and threats that if I published my review I would be ‘destroyed’.

Any author should be prepared to encounter tough criticism to begin with. First, second, and even third novels are often not met with the reaction that an author desires. George Orwell’s first few novels were very badly received, and it was the process of rejection which eventually led to the successful publishing of Down and Out in Paris and London.

I am an open, honest and fair critic and thus some reviews, particularly of first time authors, can seem a little discouraging. However, all of my reviews are conducted with respect for the time and effort put into any novel and with particular sympathy to first time authors. While I may at times be tough, I am never nasty.

The purpose of this post is to emphasise that no amount of abuse will stop a reviewer from saying what they feel. I will continue to give an honest review of any book I read. Any author who asks for a review should be open to the prospect that not all comments will be positive.

Threatening behaviour helps no-one and achieves nothing.