We get asked a lot of questions here at Romance Rehab. The most popular are:
The answer to the first one is easy. Check out our 5-star reads section, or our 1-click wonders section. The second question is pretty simple, too. The answer is maybe. Check out our review guidelines. But the third question...well, that’s where things get a little dicey.
There are lots of great blogs out there who offer nothing but glowing reviews of books they adored. They strive to maintain a completely positive environment that is supportive of both readers and all authors. We think that’s cool. It’s very zen and, um, yoga-like. But that’s just not our style. So, here’s why we choose to include negative reviews on our site:
Not all books are good/Honesty is the best policy. Sorry.
It’s the truth. While we’d love to hold all authors’ hands and sing Kumbaya all day with them, the fact of the matter is that not everything that’s published out there is good. We’re not here to make friends with authors. (Although we HAVE made friends with some really lovely authors, that’s a perk, not the purpose of the site.) We’re here to offer reading suggestions, and to help crush the romance stigma. If we come across a read that sucks (for whatever reason), we’re going to point out why we didn’t like it. That’s just being honest. We do our best to point out any redeeming qualities the read might’ve had, too—but at the end of the day, our mothers’ always told us that honesty is the best policy, so that’s what we provide: Honest book reviews.
But, in our own defense, we’re just as passionate about books we love as we are about books we hate. Our average review rating on Goodreads is currently at 4.11, so we don’t hate everything we read. And when we don’t like a book, we don’t tag an author on Facebook or Twitter to rub their noses in it (aside from one regrettable incident when we were just starting out and didn’t really know any better. Profuse apologies were offered). We don’t make fun of anyone who enjoyed the books we review negatively. Long-story-short, we’re not grumpy ALL the time.
You aren’t alone
You know that feeling you get when you anxiously download a book because of all the glowing reviews it received, only to read it and discover you hate it with the fiery heat of a thousand suns? You feel betrayed by all those folks who told you how great the book was, don’t you? If that happens to you regularly, you’re part of the Unpopular Opinion Crew, and we welcome you into our fold with open arms. (We’re thinking of having jackets made up. But we digress…) Sometimes all you need to do to start feeling better is receive a little validation from someone who, like you, hated the book. We’re here for you. You’re welcome.
We read it so you wouldn’t have to
When we read something genuinely awful, something so putrid that we’re wishing brain bleach was something we could pick up at Target, we feel like it’s our duty to warn you, the innocent reading public, of the evil that lurks on Amazon, waiting to suck you in and steal your money. In short, we read it so you wouldn’t have to. Again: you’re welcome.
What about y’all? Anything you’d like to add? Let us know! We’d love to hear from you.