In talking with a good friend who's mega talented and creative, she asked me if I've ever scoped out other reviews of one book I've read and reviewed, and compared them to my own. Not one or two but many.
Can't say that I have but of course, instigator that she is, it got me to thinking.
I decided to investigate a book that I really liked. It's a series, it's paranormal and I don't think too many people know about her yet.
Silver Zombie by Carole Nelson Douglas. Ever read it?
So, first thing I did was to use my favorite search engine. The initial thing I noticed were the intro lines. Search engines can only post the first line or two of a review. I find that interesting. Why? Because that little window of opportunity is similar to an author's. They have to start their blurbs or even the first chapter with a hook, a unique sentence that grabs the reader. Needless to say, I sort of got mired in those one sentence attention grabbers. I'll compare reviews a different day. Today I thought it would be cool to share what an Internet query would show a potential book buyer.
Also, bear in mind that somewhere in my archives here I covered the intro to a review. Not only does a review not start with a synopsis but that first line should be fresh and unique and not some standard intro like 'Once upon a time...". We've outgrown that, haven't we?
This is what I found:
#1 - What do the Wizard of Oz, zombies and really cool bar drinks have in common? The answer is the heroine of Silver Zombie, Delilah Street, ...
#2 - Silver Zombie (Delilah Street #4). by Kelly Chandler (Goodreads). I think Carole has a winner with this series, the books are getting better as they ...
#3 - Silver Zombie is book four in Carole Nelson Douglas' Delilah Street series. It picks up where Vampire Sunrise ends; read the previous three
#4 - Silver Zombie started in Vegas then took a wild ride to Kansas- to Delilah's past. And wouldn't you know it her past and her present collide
#5 - Review of Silver Zombie. Delilah Street, Paranormal Investigator, #4 ... Silver Zombie is book Four in the Delilah Street Series
#6 - In Silver Zombie Delilah and Ric are headed back to Kansas to learn a little bit about why Delilah has some of her... hang-ups.
#7 - :In Silver Zombie, we learn more about the new abilities that Ric gained in ...
#8 - A little bit slow at the beginning but picked up when they reached Kansas. Read All Book Reviews of "Silver Zombie Delilah Street
#9 - Silver Zombie (Kindle Edition). This was a disappointing installment in what has previously been a pretty good series. ...
Okay readers and visitors - here are my questions for you.
WHICH one from the list would have you clicking the link to check out the rest of the review?
What do you think is the best? The worst?
My opinion? You know I have one. **GRIN**
I've come to the conclusion that starting off a review with the title and name of the author in that first line, especially one with a lot of words, robs the reviewer of a chance for their review to hook someone, anyone. Why? Because it leaves no room for anything clever or witty to show up in the search engine query.
I learned something here myself and will strive to adjust accordingly. If I feel the need to mention the book title and author name, I'll perhaps do it in the second line or even the beginning of the first paragraph in the meat of the review.
And this is the other thing I figured out. If a reader is surfing the Internet for a particular book or author, they already know that information. It's how they came to the link in the first place. It's redundant to say it all over again in the very first line. I want my review to be read, not hidden.
What do you think?