{Top Ten Tuesday} The Evolution of My Book Reviews

Posted April 23, 2019 by Leah in Memes & Features, Top 10 Tuesday / 20 Comments

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

Hello, everyone! Today, we’re taking another stroll down Memory Lane as I delve back into the first ten books I ever reviewed. I started reviewing books in 2002–I’ve been doing this for almost seventeen years! But, I clearly remember my leap into reviewing on Amazon in 2007, so I’ll be using those books for this post.

Over the years, my reviewing style has changed into a more constructive format. Before, I had a flair for the dramatic (ex. OH MY GOD I LOOOOVE THIS BOOK!!!1!!) or (ex. This book sucked my will to live. DO NOT READ!!!1!!) but never gave a lot of reasons as to why I felt these ways. I gave out 5 stars like I was passing out candy at Halloween. Also, the genres of books have changed as well. I still read literary adult fiction and romance, but it’s not my go-to genre like it used to be. I might still be a little dramatic, though. 🙂 Enjoy the list!


1–The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri 


The “first” review! This was the book where, immediately after reading, I had to share my thoughts with others.


2–Such a Pretty Girl by Laura Wiess


I thought I was Woke when I read this. Knowing what I know now about the judicial system and the huge logic leaps the book takes, my naivete was showing. *hides in embarrassment*


3–Fantasy Lover by Sherrilyn Kenyon


Oh, the Dark-Hunter series. I was smitten with these books and gave this unofficial prequel to the series 5 stars. Cut to me later realizing just how mean the “hero” is to the heroine, and the overall reminder of HOW INCREDIBLY HAWT the “hero” is, which I addressed in my review. To add insult to injury, it took me around six books in this series to realize it’s the same formula over and over again: the super-tortured, brooding, hunky/handsome hero and the sweet, saintly woman with some not-quite-drama drama.


4–The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

This book! I’d like to think this was where my  reviews started becoming more constructive of what I thought worked and didn’t work and it started with The Lovely Bones.


5–The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

I really liked this book then. I really like this book now.


6–The Cobra and the Concubine by Bonnie Vanak


Oh, my historical romance days. I remember loving this book and wonder if my feelings would change or stay the same. Maybe it’s better to just remember how my like for it the first time I read it.


7–Between, Georgia by Joshilyn Jackson


Very in-between read for me.


8–Peony in Love by Lisa See


I was looking through my review of this one and I had to cringe. I sound pretentious and flowery. Maybe I wasn’t quite where I needed to be writing reviews just yet.


9–Midnight Moon by Laurie Handeland


This book was just…I didn’t know what I had read. I did finish it, but…I don’t know. I was flipping through the book recently and, yes, my opinion is still the same.


10–Chosen by a Horse by Susan Richards


I bought this book because it has a horse. I got more than that: heart-breaking friendship and love, I really liked this one.






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20 responses to “{Top Ten Tuesday} The Evolution of My Book Reviews

  1. Chosen By a Horse sounds so sweet! I used to read a lot of horse books as a kid. I was reviewing for Epinions.com a long time ago too… sadly, all those reviews are lost as well. Good job doing this for so long!

    • Leah

      Chosen by a Horse was excellent. I was trying to link some of my Amazon reviews on here, but I couldn’t figure out how to isolate my reviews from others. 😆

    • Leah

      It’s an ongoing process. I felt going forward that it was the right choice to be as constructive as possible. My review style still evolves.

    • Leah

      Secret Life of Bees is great! Thanks for the kind words, I still feel like I’m learning about reviewing, which is good. 😀

  2. LOL Loved your comments on this. I can’t believe you’ve been reviewing 17 years – I didn’t even know about this stuff back then! I’ve only been reviewing about three years and I was def handing out five stars much easier LOL In my defense, I had been away from YA for years and it had changed a ton so when I got back I was like “WOW, YOU ARE THE BEST BOOK EVER” wait, wait… no “NOW YOU ARE THE BEST BOOK EVER” so yeah I get the whole drama thing lolol

    • Leah

      Oh, five stars and I were BFFs back then. 😁 And I know the feeling about “You are the best book ever… oh no, wait, THIS is the best book ever!”

  3. Greg

    Wow almost 17 years- that’s amazing! And right about drama? Sometimes when I look back at my old reviews I’m like “really? Drama much haha?

    The Secret Life of Bees looks great!

    • Leah

      LOL I couldn’t really write a review without being dramatic. I think I’ve toned down a lot though. Secret Life of Bees is great!

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