Reading the Reviews

What persuades you to read a book, especially a book by an author you’ve never read before? If the book is on a bookstore shelf (not likely for most of today’s fabulous indie books) you might have been drawn in by the cover design or the intriguing title. You pick up the book and browse through it, maybe you read the inside front jacket or the back cover for a synopsis.

With the many great books that are not on your local bookshelves but are available through online retailers like Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Smashwords, authors have a harder time catching your eye. We use blog posts, tagging, video book trailers, and online apps such as fReado; fReado allows you to “browse” through the first chapters of a book before you buy so that you can decide for yourself if it interests you.

Authors like to build the “Buzz” about our books to get our readers to notice us. Part of that “Buzz” is the almost always dreaded review. Authors pour our heart and soul into our books and we hope that our finished products will be met with loads of approval – unfortunately that isn’t always the case. Authors AND readers have to learn how to read the reviews.

First of all not everyone likes the same kind (genre) of book – do YOU have a favorite type of book to read and perhaps a type you just won’t touch willingly? That might affect a reviewer’s reaction although many professionals base their reviews on different aspects of a book (believable characters, flow, clear storyline, etc.) and not just the genre.

Sometimes even a poor review might indicate a book worthy of a read. One of my books once received only a 3 (out of 5) and the reason given was the genre and style – the reviewer was honest and said she was not attracted to romantic suspense and then compared my style to Danielle Steele! I was quite pleased and gladly accepted the 3. As an author, I appreciate reviewers’ honesty and really like it when they tell you the whys of their reaction to the book and go a step further and suggest how things might be better.

Many readers get the opportunity to post their opinions on books on sites like Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and GoodReads. Authors and readers should read them all, the good and the bad – but both readers and authors need to keep an open mind. Many of these reviews come from serious readers and are worth considering, but be careful how much stock you put into their responses. Read the full review to judge its quality and worth, learn which ones might not be meaningful. Personally I toss out the reviews from “anonymous” sources (using cutesy “codenames”) AND are snarky without valuable CONSTRUCTIVE criticism. Unfortunately many new writers are often discouraged by these reviews that seem to be plain ol’ mean.

If you are unsure how much you should rely on a particular reviewer’s word, see if they’ve written other reviews (this is usually a clickable find on the individual sites) and see what their normal style is. By all means research the book, use, see if the book has won any awards or honors, and often you can even communicate with the author (look at their website for contact info). You never know, sometimes that book that some stranger couldn’t stand might just turn out to be one of your faves.

My novel, Bartlett’s Rule, received five 5-star reviews on Amazon and was named one of Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s Top Ten Reads for 2009 on

Please read the reviews for Bartlett’s Rule
by clicking HERE

Buy Links

Amazon (print)

Amazon (Kindle)

BarnesandNoble (print)

BarnesandNoble (NOOK)

multiple ebook formats (Smashwords)

Another FUN Contest!

1..Cordero’s writing and plot is engaging and entertaining

2. A major work, and a great story

3. the author skillfully captures emotion and feeling

4. Chelle Cordero has shared a suspenseful, romantic tale of two people the reader can’t help but become involved with

5. another Cordero whirlwind of gut-wrenching danger and prospective star-crossed love

6. High RPM Romantic Suspense

7. This is a five star book by a five star author

8. I kept turning pages because I had to know what happened next. The author didn’t let me down.

9. Any more books by Chelle Cordero?????

10. Gut-wrenching novel

11. Kudos to Ms. Cordero for penning an entertaining read.

12. The combined love story and suspense story really kept me intrigued

13. There is so much depth, intrigue

14. winning combination of romance and suspense

15. The story is so well crafted and the characters evoke lots of emotion from the reader

16. This author is a true hidden gem

17. Real people, Real Problems and Real Solutions

18. a love story between two seemingly very different kinds of people

19. turns in the plot to keep readers guessing about choices and outcomes until the last page.

20. she poignantly tells the story of their journey

Lazy days of August – just the perfect time for a contest!

Above are actual quotes & phrases from reviews about MY books (hint, ALL of these reviews appear on

Just find the NAMES OF THE REVIEWERS for any 3 or more of the quotes above and your name will be put in for a drawing – there will be prizes (ebooks, lady’s XL T-shirt, ???)

I will hold a random drawing from everyone who emails me at and lists the names of 3 or more reviewers along with the # of the specific quote (in other words, if I wrote a review of someone’s book and the quote was number 3 on the list, the answer would be 3-Chelle Cordero) – put Contest in the subject line.

More reviews on Amazon

Please help make these reviews even more potent
when it says Was this review helpful to you?
(on the Amazon site)
please click on YES
you will be helping the reviewer’s ratings as well as me.

Love this Review!

I love this review of Forgotten posted by Namid on GoodReads:

“Holy crap! Ok, I know that’s not a good literary term, but this is PHENOMENAL!!!! I’ve only been reading for a short period of time, but this story just engulfs you right away! There is so much depth, intrigue – this book is WAY more intricate than I had had expected. It is BEAUTIFULLY crafted. Not a book you can put down by any means. If you haven’t already, you HAVE to read this book! Thank you so much, Chelle! This book ROCKS!!!! 🙂 “

Namid rated it: 5 stars

12/10/08 bookshelves: currently-reading
Read in December, 2008

recommended to Namid by: Kimberlee
recommends it for: EVERYONE

Forgotten by Chelle Cordero


Please EMAIL me!

When you read my books (Bartlett’s Rule, Courage of the Heart or Forgotten [coming soon]) –

Please send me your comments & reviews…
just address them to me at

If I like what you say (hey, this site is after all FOR the promotion of my books!), I may quote you here – so let me know if that is okay and if I can use your full name. And if I do quote you here, I will let you know so you can let all of your friends know!


and remember to put in your address book.