Page 61

Christine says:

Many things that make a book good for me and I look for these. I search for the content looking for something that could make me learn something. It does not matter who the author might be, or if the content is happy or scary. To make it a good book for me, it must grab my interest straight away, make me excited, or it must be a book which helps me learn something. It has these elements then it is a most likely a book I'll enjoy. That makes it a good book for me.

Kathy said: This is a tough. It is not easy to define the reasons why you pick a certain book to read. Unfortunately, I can more easily say why I don’t like certain books and to be honest, it is often the result of the author. The most recent books I disliked are the one from an author I could not grow to like however hard I tried. This was due to her style of writing and how her characters are always women who can’t take care of themselves. Another was very poorly written and although her story may have been a good one to share, I could not get past the abysmal writing. The last I shall tell you about was one where the author was so self-absorbed by his own ego I struggled to read the story.

But what makes a book good? I guess it is a captivating story. One's with great character development always work well for me, which probably explains why I would much rather read a book than watch a movie. Authors need to write their stories in a way that attracts a reader and keeps the reader’s attent

ion. It does not necessarily mean he or she is, or must be, a great writer by literary standards, but rather that he or she can tell a good story. A good book must weave a captivating tale. I think the differentiator between a good book and a great book is the ability of the author. A great book is not only going to have a good story, but it is going to be written well. But sometimes a good book must do more for the reader in the point of their life they are at, at that time. Let me explain, the books I read while going through my divorce may not fall into the normal classification of a 'good' book, but it was what I needed at that time in my life. Although I may not now classify it as a good book, at the time I did. It (then) satisfied my needs. Personally, I choose to read a variety of genres and enjoy a wide range of books, from historical fiction to YA and non-fiction, biographies to mysteries to award winning novels, whereas I know friends who read only a single style of book or tend to follow a single author or two. Some of them have no desire to expand their reading.

The above suggests it is the reader who ultimately decides what makes a good book, not academia or literary critiques, which itself presents a challenge in defining what is precisely a 'good book' or not. This is also the challenge for authors, to understand how to write and for whom, even when. Defining a books market is not so simple after all. Your feedback on this article is appreciated. Email:

Profile for ElectricPress

Electric Press - literary insights magazine. May 2019 edition.