Romancing the Blog: Reading Romances

We’ve made it to day 5 of our Romancing the Blog event and we’re excited to welcome Nat from Reading Romances.  I first met Nat when I participating in her Blogoversary celebration a couple months ago and she’s returning the favor by making a stop here.  She’s also giving away a gift card to a lucky commenter… so your comment today can be entered in both her contest and our event contest.

Jen: How did you get into blogging?
Nat: I stared blogging an year and 4 months ago. Basically, I wanted to share my thoughts about books and get to know people who like romance books as much as I do! I adore having discussions at the blog and reading comments, I find this virtual connection friendly and extremely generous. No one has to join the events, write a comment or send an email, people do it because they want to participate and feel like they’re not alone, but part of a community.

Jen: What makes your blog unique in a large sea of book blogs?
Nat: I have no idea! As you can notice by reading this interview, I’m not a very talkative person, and I’m the only person behind Reading Romances. My posts are always straight to the point and the reviews I write are very analytical too. When I’m writing them I try not to tell the story from my perspective, but I always ask myself: What worked? What didn’t? How did I feel about it? And the answers are the main points on my reviews. In the end it’s all about what catches my attention, my preferences and if the reader can relate to my opinion.

Jen: What’s the most rewarding aspect of being a part of the blogging community?
Nat: Everyone is just so nice, helpful and supportive! When you least expect, there’s always someone kind to help you. I believe it’s amazing and feels good be part of it all!

Jen: What’s been the highlight of your blogging experience?
Nat: When authors wanted to participate in my events and I started to get to know them. That was magical! I LOVE new friends

Jen: If you had to recommend one book to our readers, what would it be and why?
Nat: Only one? Oh, that’s so cruel. I would have to recommend The Duke and I by Julia Quinn, if you like some comedy in your historicals, I bet you’ll love the Bridgerton series (that’s the first book).

Jen: Do you have any news about your blog that you’d like to share with us?
Nat: I always have something going on at the blog! Go check it out and the images on the sidebar will guide you!  Oh, and I have a very special birthday contest that will start this Saturday, July 14.

Jen: Will you tell us a little more about the people behind the blog?
Nat: Pleasure to meet you, I’m Nat! I got an art degree and I currently work as a teacher. I’m also an avid romance reader who started to discover romance novels almost 3 years ago. I love romantic fiction and my favorite sub genres are historical, erotic, sci-fi and fantasy. You can always find me on gtalk and facebook if you’d like to talk to me! And for more information about the Reading Romances blog, you can find at my ABOUT page.

Jen: Is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Nat: What do you look for when you read a review?

Find Reading Romances at:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


Nat is generously giving away a gift card to a random commenter. The only mandatory entry is answering her question via comment. And this comment will also qualify you for the event long contest (which can be entered daily). Don’t forget to fill out both Rafflecopter forms!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
  a Rafflecopter giveaway

57 thoughts on “Romancing the Blog: Reading Romances

  1. miki says:

    Hi Nat! Happy to see you here ^^;;

    I find your review interesting don’t worry ^^ as for what i’m looking for in a review hum good question first i like to know if the book was original or not and i also appreciate to know if there is a cliffhanger or not. I also love to have an idea of what the person who wrote it liked or not in the story

    • That’s a good thing to know, specially if the book is part of a series and has an OMG cliffhanger! It’s better to plan the amount of time you have to spend reading =)
      Thanks for all your support, Miki! xo

  2. Carin W says:

    when I am reading a review I look for a couple things first and foremost is I don’t want to whole book laid out for me/NO Spoilers!, second I want to know who the hero and heroine are and what brings them to interact in the book, and finally I want to know WHY you liked or hated it did you hate it because it needed a serious edit or the plot was all over the place or because the hero reminded you of an ex-boyfriend, did you like it because you like dark creepy books or because you have a weird sense of humor or did you like it because the hero was romantic?
    Carin mawmom(at)gmail(dot)com

    • I agree with you, Carin! The explanation of why you like it or not can be hard to point out the exact reason, but I try to do my best!
      Good luck! =)

  3. Diane Sallans says:

    I look for a brief description of the characters & plot, comments about those, comparisons to other authors & books; overall rating, perhaps on several categories like heat level, scariness, does it have an HEA (my requirement).

    • Hi Diane!
      I believe than when a person reviews romance it’s highly advisable that they warn the reader in case it’s not a HEA book!!
      Thanks for leaving a comment!

  4. Na says:

    I like reviews that tells how they felt about it. The good, the bad, and the overall sense of the story. I’m not a fan of spoilers but I do want a balance of what the story is about and how the reviewer felt about it.

    • I believe most of us don’t enjoy spoilers all over the reviews! Especially without a warning to let the reader know beforehand. Otherwise you get caught with a big surprise and loose the interest in the book =/
      I hope you stop by my blog!

  5. Amy S. says:

    I look for a description of the book and how the author felt about the book. If they liked it or not and if they would read another book by the author.

  6. Jeanne Miro says:

    Hi Nat –

    My two favorite things I look for when I visit a blog are reviews and author interviews. To me if I read both I can see the book from both the reviewers perspective as well as the authors.

    In a review I want to not only know the reviewer’s opinion what what influenced them in making the decision. In an interview I like hearing how the author decided on characters, location and conflict involved in their stories as well as their motivation in writing that particular story.

    That said I always try to keep an open mind because to me books can be like children or an old boyfriend. Some look and sound good from the outside but when you know them you see their flaws while others you might not initially pay attention to but when you get to know them better you find a heart of gold inside. It’s just a matter of looking for the right things with the right frame of mind.

    • Great to see you here, Jeanne!

      I love author interviews too, I believe it gives us a chance to get to know the story much more and sometimes enhance our curiosity to read their book(s)!

      Thanks for your support! =)

  7. gamistress66 says:

    when reading a review I look for a little insight into the book, what the review enjoyed &/or didn’t enjoy while they were reading it, is the book part of a series & if so will something be lost if prior books aren’t read first or ok to try this one &, if like it, go back to the prior stories

  8. Barbara Elness says:

    When I read a review I look for some excitement about the book. If the reviewer is raving about the book, it gives me a good feeling about it. I also like to hear their feelings about the story, what they thought of the characters, the plot, etc.

  9. bn100 says:

    In a review, I look for a little information about the book and whether the reader enjoyed the book.

  10. donna harris says:

    What I look for in a review is how the author feels about her/his book. If they are excited about the characters, heros, lovers or villans. I like to know some about what the book is about. Some of the story line to give you an idea if it’s going to leave me hanging, wanting to go and purchase the book right now to read it to see what happens. I love a good romance, historical romance, what it was like living in the past.
    I have a hard time writing about the thoughts in my head, it doesn’t sound right.

  11. Maureen says:

    When I read a review I am looking for more information on the story than what I can find on the back blurb of a book. There have been times that the reviewer didn’t love the book but I wanted to read it because of the description of the story. Also, I want to know why the reviewer liked or didn’t like the story.

  12. Margay says:

    I look for honesty in my reviews. I want to know if a book is so bad they wouldn’t recommend it – before I buy it. Or why they would recommend it. What I don’t want is for someone to spoil the book for me – do the review without spilling all the secrets of the book.

  13. erinf1 says:

    Thanks for a fun post!!

    I look for honest reviews. One that is more focused on review the story/content than proving to me how snarky and witty they can be. I don’t necessarily need a professional, magazine style review but enough that I can tell that the reviewer truly read the book and what they took away from it.

  14. June says:

    In reviews, my favorites are not too long, with specific reasons for what they did/did not like, info if this is part of a series and if so if they should be read in order. And above all, honesty with no bias or bashing.

  15. I look for keywords when I read a review – which I rarely do. I am a “scanner” so if it’s just a big blob of essay-like review, I won’t read it. If it is in bullets or it has some kind of format like a character breakdown/commentary, then I’m more likely to read it. Just pretty much grab my attention for the first 5 seconds.

  16. Chelsea B. says:

    I look for information that you wouldn’t find in the blurb, and maybe a favorite scene or two so we can see if we like what you liked about the book 🙂

  17. SoftFuzzySweater says:

    I look for a good synopsis of the story without too much of the story spoiled for me. I want to know if the hero is someone I’d fall in love with myself.

    Please enter me. Thank you.


  18. SoftFuzzySweater says:

    Nat commented that her favorite book was “The Duke and I’. I recently read a critique on that so I ordered from Amazon and I can’t wait to read it. Sounds like a great romance.
    Please enter me in the giveaway’ Thanks

  19. Jen B. says:

    1. I don’t like crazy long reviews.
    2. I like a good summary of the reviewer’s opinions.
    3. I want to know why – either positive or negative.
    4. I like to know if the reveiwer has or will read more by the author.
    5. I like consistency. I want all of the reviews by a particular review to be consistent so I can know who I am reading.
    6. I love honest emotion in a review – whether it is for or against reading a book.

  20. wyndwhisper says:

    i usually look for a review that is somewhere in the middle before i even begin to read it. if there are only 1 or 2 stars then it tends to be just a mean and snarky review but if it is 5 stars it is usually from someone that knows the author.
    then i look to see if it has a good plot and characters and of course and HEA/HFN.

    tammy ramey

  21. Deb Pelletier says:

    What do I look for in a Review. How it’s rated,one to four stars. Then the story line, is it something I would like read. What about the characters,do I think they are intresting.

  22. Emily W. says:

    When reading a review, I tend to look for…not spoilers exactly, but details that aren’t in the blurb. For example, I want to know if it’s going to have a happy ending. I hate reading a book only to have it end sadly if I don’t know about it. If I know it has a sad ending, I look for some spoilers and more info before I read it.


  23. Mary Preston says:

    When I read a review I guess I want the positives & less than positives. A general overall impression helps.

  24. Carol L says:

    Hi Nat, nice meeting you here. Just came from your blog. Love it.. What a great Birthday Celebration you have going on. Happy Birthday..
    I don’t want spoilers for sure when reading a review. I love that your reviews are not done on your perspective but how it made you feel. Because that’s what I like, hearing why you felt the way you did. Did you enjoy the story line, the characters and if you didn’t. I get a picture of the kind of book and story it is.
    Carol L.
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  25. Evie says:

    The first thing I look for on a review is the rating and then if the concept/story/characters are really original.
    Thanks a lot for the giveaway!

  26. JoAnne says:

    I don’t read too many reviews since everyone’s choices of what they like and don’t like are varied. I alsways look at the rating and then from the review itself try to see if the words give it credence.

    The answer I liked most in your posting was:
    Jen: What’s been the highlight of your blogging experience?
    Nat: When authors wanted to participate in my events and I started to get to know them. That was magical! I LOVE new friends

    I never knew how accessible some authors could be with their fans. It has been such fun getting to know them. I love when they comment on a review I’ve written on one of their books.

  27. leannessf says:

    I like to know whether the protagonist is likeable and interesting – if not, I will most likely not read it as I can’t stand boring or inane characters!


  28. Crystal Newman says:

    I like to see what books they read and what they like. I think you get to know a person by the books they read. I also like reading about their family for example things that are going on in their lives. I know with four kids I’ve always got something going on.

  29. winnie says:

    What I look for in reviews is the reviewer’s opinion on a book and whether they enjoyed reading it or not, I’d like to know why. It would be great if they can use examples from the book/story itself (warning if there are any spoilers used) to elaborate on their opinions.

  30. anna says:

    Honestly one way or another. If there were things they didn’t like about the book I want to know what they were. It usually won’t stop me from picking up the book but it’s good to know going in.

    I also LOVE getting favorite quotes from the book.


  31. When I read a review I look to see how much the person enjoyed it. You can tell how much someone liked a book based on the way they talk about it. I also want to know if it’s worth the chance/should I buy it.

  32. Karen H in NC says:

    I absolutely love Julia Quinn’s work. I’ll read anything she has in print. I just finished her 2nd Smythe-Smith book and loved it! Stephanie Laurens is another of my must-buy authors.

  33. Kim D says:

    The only time I really listen to a review is if too many of them say the exact same thing and it’s a new author. Often I just read the blurb and excerpt and decide for myself. Thanks for the contest

  34. Trix says:

    I like a review that is fairly concise, but gives me an idea of the author’s style and whether I’d like the plot and characters (while avoiding spoilers).

  35. Julie S. says:

    I look for a quick summary of the review and a summary of what the reviewer liked and did not like about the book. I tend to focus on the did not like section to see if those items would bother me too, or if I would actually like a book that went in that particular direction.

  36. Anne says:

    I look for a balanced review which lists the reasons why or gives examples why the reviewer liked or didn’t like the book. I also like an excerpt to get a feel for the book myself. I also like a grade of some sort which indicates how much the reviewer liked the book. I follow one reviewer who just ends with “I liked the book.” Well, how much? A three star means maybe I should look it up, 5 stars means I will look it up.

    Some reviewers rave about the book then rate it 3 out of 5 which is confusing.

  37. Laurie says:

    I like to see a quick summary of the book but no spoilers, what the reviewer thought of the book and what they liked/disliked.

  38. Lynne says:

    I read a review to find out the overall plot of the story and the general info about the characters Spoilers are never good and it is good to know if the book is part of a series and if it ends in a cliffhanger (which can be so annoying if you have to wait quite a bit of time for the next book in the series

  39. Diane D - Florida says:

    If I’m interested in a book because I like the author, then I always visit Amazon and read their reader reviews. I also look at blogs that might have posted a comment about the book too. However, at the end of the day, I always leave an open mind. I do this because one of the authors that I liked and respected, received bad reviews on her book. I’m glad that I ignored these reviews because, I really enjoyed her book. So you see, reviews don’t take into consideration everybody’s point of view and what they’re looking for in a book.

  40. wanda flanagan says:

    A description of the book that includes the characters and their personalities I realy enjoy seeing a blrb along with it .When deciding if I wantto read a book the characters personalities are a major factor .

  41. adis says:

    I read the review to find out about the reviewer opinion toward the book, either the good side or the bad side.

  42. I like my reviews to be honest and contain no spoilers. I also want to know what you liked and didn’t like. I can’t think of any book that didn’t have something I didn’t like in it. Maybe not well written or poor dialogue. Thanks for the giveaway!!

  43. This is going to sound funny, but I don’t read reviews before I read a book. I love to go in blind having no idea what to expect. I do however write reviews and tweet other people’s reviews, such as Nat’s on Reading Romances.

    If I’m not about to read the book, I will read reviews on blogs. I look for excitement on the reviewer’s part. Sometimes, there is just a general feel to a review. It’s not always something that is written, but a feeling conveyed by the reviewer between the lines of the review.

  44. When I read reviews I look for whether or not the blogger has somehow tied the book into their own lives/related to it somehow. I like to see how readers can take the material and apply it to their own situations and how that affects what/how they think of the book.

  45. Cheryl McInnis says:

    When I read reviews I’m looking for a fair balance between what the reviewer enjoyed and didn’t enjoy about the book. I tend to gloss over the reviews that are 100% positive or negative.
    Thanks for the giveaway, I’m looking forward to checking out your blog!

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