Sunday, August 14, 2011

Book Reviews vs Impressions

I've been reading and reviewing technical books at Amazon.com since 1999, and trying to meet reading goals since 2000. Most of you know that I only review books that I read, unlike some of the people who post "reviews" at Amazon.com. I personally don't care to read "reviews" by people who don't read the books. What's the point?

However, I believe there is room for commentary on books, where I explicitly state that my reactions are based mainly on impressions and not thorough reading.

After looking at my personal reading list several months ago, I decided to not read some books thoroughly enough to merit a full review. One of the techniques I adopted was to take a book on a cross-country trip (IAD to LAX, for example) and read as much as I could, or as much as interested me, during those 4 to 6 hours.

During that time I would record notes, just as I do when writing book reviews. Unless I complete the book, I will not turn those notes into a proper Amazon.com book review.

Instead, I will post a new category of description, impressions, to this blog. These impressions will let you know what I think of a book based on paying attention to the areas that I find intriguing (if any).

I plan to use this approach with books outside my core areas of interest. For books within my core areas of interest, I will read and review them per normal.

None of these impressions candidates will qualify for my annual Best Book Bejtlich Read award.

For those not familiar with my reading approach, these reading posts might be helpful.

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