I recently checked how The Alberta Connection, a Ryce Dalton novel, was doing on Amazon. I was actually surprised to discover sixteen reviews, divided up as follows: 10 5-star, 3 4-star, 1 3-star, 1 2-star, and 1 1-star.
What have I learned? First, almost two thirds of the reviewers liked the book enough to give it five stars. In today’s book market, with a multitude of possible books to read, having ten readers like the book is fantastic.
Second, based on the comments in the 1, 2, and 3 star reviews, there is no possible way to please everyone. Perhaps, the reviewers were actually looking for a reason to award a low mark. I won’t attempt to read the minds of the ones who didn’t like the book.
I can see why most book review sites refuse to post reviews that are less than five stars. But, only five star reviews hinder the review process and create questions about the reliability of the reviews on that site. I don’t think most writers are creating a five star novel every time they tap on a key.
I think reviews should provide one thing —– an honest evaluation of the book that has been reviewed. In the three low reviews of The Alberta Connection, I didn’t see any real honesty.
However, this gives me, as an author, a new goal, which I doubt I will ever achieve — to produce a novel that results in only five-star reviews. I really don’t see it happening. There is, after all, only one of me.