I was alerted to a post that Scott Pack of ‘Me and My Big Mouth’ had done called ‘Missed Opportunity’ for The Bookseller blog which happened to mention book bloggers (including this one bizarrely) in a very positive light. In fact Scott was saying that really the big papers should open their review pages because of the personality bloggers inject into their “array of interesting, arresting, entertaining and relevant reviews”. Scott puts it all much better than I could try and regurgitate so pop and see the whole post here.
It did of course set my mind off wandering about the whole Book Bloggers vs. Broadsheet Reviewing debate. After I have finished reading a book then typed all my initial thoughts (I actually then go away to have some space before then rewriting those book thoughts) and pressed schedule I will pop and google the book and read both the broadsheet reviews and the bloggers ones. Which do I prefer? Well I like both, I think the broadsheet ones are a but drier but that’s because with the bloggers I invariably have read some of their posts before and there is an injection of not just a reaction to the books prose and ‘literary’ merits but also an emotional one, and I think that is key.
Do I think these more emotive thoughts could work in a paper, course I do – though you would have to build peoples trust in you and your personality up. Will it actually happen though? I doubt it very much.
You see there is that snobbery that if you haven’t done an English literature degree you aren’t qualified to comment. I find that interesting as I didn’t do any degree, I worked my way to where I am but I also spent those years reading books voraciously that I wanted to, that were my taste and worked for me as books. I wasn’t dictated to or told what makes a good read. I would say that gives me a certain unique selling point maybe, not in an arrogant way – I mean I have read for years and think that’s qualification enough.
Have a look at the piece and tell me what you think. This post isn’t meant as some war cry against the broadsheets by the way, I just find it interesting. What are you thoughts on Book Blogs vs. Broadsheet Reviews? Which one do you prefer, or do you think there is room for both? Any other thoughts?