I saw a conversation on Twitter the other day where authors were encouraging writers never to post a bad review of a book anywhere on the internet.
Why? Because someday that writer might want to work with the editor of said hated book, or he/she may need a blurb from that writer. We want to make friends, not burn bridges.
I felt a little defensive when I read this advice.
Do you think authors need to leave their critical-thinking caps in the closet when they're writing reviews? Should honest book reviewers never try to write novels?
I'm not talking about people who go out of their way to slam books just to be mean. I'm talking about thoughtful, critical reviews. Sometimes a thoughtful, critical review can cast a book in a negative light. We live in a culture where a bunch of three-star ratings can bring a book down.
While I'm all for preserving bridges and making friends and building relationships, I don't think editors are so egotistical that they cannot take a critical review of one of their books with grace. We all are trying to grow and learn. Editors, too!
I don't want to be afraid to give a two or three star rating on Goodreads if I think it's deserved. I would honestly hope any editor I worked with would be more interested in my book than in my opinions about other books. But maybe I'm too idealistic.
How about you? If you're a writer, do you shy away from giving honest reviews of certain books because of possible backlash? Do you avoid reviewing books at all? (If you're not a writer -- lucky you! You can review however you want!)
I'm really interested to hear what you all think, so please let me know in the comments!