What Makes a Book Stand Out?

Why do I write reviews the way I do?

I think there’s a lot more to a book than just the plot, and each of us recognizes different things. Some of the things I recognize off the bat are covers, writing style, character development, and diversity.

I totally judge a book by its cover. I mean, I can’t even read the back cover most of the time because I get so distracted! (I usually end up skimming it and tend to read books based on recommendation or whether their front cover is really appealing – this has gotten me into quite a few bad books!)

Writing style and character development are big for me, because more than what the actual plot line is, these make or break the book for me. Can I get into a flow in reading, or do I find myself zoning out constantly? For me that has a lot to do with the writing style. Character evolution is what keeps me entertained.

Finally, when I think about what separates the cream of the crop from books that are good, the theme that comes up for me is diversity. What I mean by this is: were there unique perspectives? Did this book promote more than one way of thinking? Do I find myself looking back on the book and finding new meaning? A lot of diversity has to do with me exploring new ideas and reaching new conclusions or having new insights for life. Diversity is ultimately what will make me keep a book on my shelf once I’ve finished it.

What makes a book stand out to you?

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