In Support of Negative Reviews
To run a blog that reviews books, particularly those written with child readers in mind, that never includes a negative review of a title is a peculiar business. Obviously a person shouldn't go out of their way to thwap an innocent book into powder and the feelings of the author must always be kept in the back of the mind. That said, some books can't be avoided. If I read a book, find it terrible, and then produce a slap-happy bubbles n' ice cream review I'm going to feel slightly ill for weeks. At the same time, I don't like taking to task first-time authors. We all have our Achilles heel. That's mine. Best is the book that's almost perfect but flawed. Reviews of those titles are the easiest and most interesting to write.
I say all this since I was recently reading this piece on Blog From the Windowsill about reviewing and honesty. We all discuss books in different ways. And the plethora of strong children's titles this year could conceivably mean that a person could read and review only the best of the batch. Still, when you write one review a day you're going to have to talk about the less than inspired. It constitutes a delicate balance.