The End of Kirkus and What Will Happen to Advance Reviews

Analysis of yesterday's news story by Jerome Kramer, an independent publishing consultant in his blog, Publishing Perspectives.

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Kirkus et al.

In my view we need professional commitment to garnering (and creating!) reviews on an ALA sponsored website. If we don't create a websource of critical high quality reviews, who will?

(Heck, I've gamed Amazon myself for a friend's book. It, and similar venues, are good for identifying popular material ... not so good for niche and small-publisher works. They, in my view, get lost through lack of attention.)

LJ and BL

Library Journal and Booklist are two review sources that, in my opinion, do not offer the same kind of critique Kirkus provided. Let's face it, if a book makes it to the pages of LJ or BL, they will most likely get a "positive", non-critical review. That being said, Kirkus provided often "cranky", mean-spirited reviews which were not always necessary to a point; however, I appreciated their willingness to "mix it up" so to speak. As a model, I look towards The Economist book reviews: well written, balanced and often so nuanced as to provoke despair at the decision to purchase a particular title or not.

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