By Iola Goulton
Last week I talked about how book reviews are for readers. But not all reviews are created equal. When it comes to online reviews (at Amazon or other sites), it can be hard know which reviews you can trust.
The trick is knowing something about the reviewer’s history. On most sites you can click on the reviewers name and see their profile, which includes their reviews. Sites like Goodreads and Christian Book show the average rating for a reviewer. Amazon doesn’t show this statistic, but the reviewing page will soon show you if they a reliable reviewer.
Personally, I ignore reviewers who only have one review, or who only ever review books by a single author. To me, those shout ‘fake’ (biased friends and family, shill, sockpuppet, or even paid reviews). I ignore reviewers who only ever give five stars, because that doesn't tell me anything about their reading tastes and whether I'm going to like the books they like. And I ignore books that only have five-star reviews, because even the classics have one-star reviews.
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