Carol Anne
Carol Anne asked:

Is it necessary to leave an outline of the plot when reviewing a book? Surely if people haven't read it they won't want to know the plot, and if they have, they do already? Am I alone in this complaint?

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Kim I try to give a bit of information regarding the plot in order to spark the interest of people who may be thinking of reading the book but you have to strike a balance between 'sparking an interest' and revealing substantial parts of the plot, which I try not to do. I quite often use the type of detail that has already been revealed in the 'blurb' on the cover (but in my own words) and then say something to the effect 'but then it all goes horribly wrong....' So, in answer to the question, I don't reveal the plot but just a basis on which someone could make a decision as to whether or not it is a book they would want to read - some people reviewing a book may find this a difficult balance to strike.
Eileen Horgan While I enjoy reading a brief outline of the plot Carol, I totally agree with you that it is unnecessary to give a book review to the extent of analysing the entire plot.
Eugene I don't believe so for the reasons you gave, however I sometimes do give some sense of the story - for myself, as I use this site as a "catalog" of my reading and, at my age anyway, I can forget what a book was about before all this long. A little mnemonic aid goes a long way...beyond that, your comments will often appear on "goodreads" as commentary by other readers; those trying to decide whether or not to embark upon a particular book will often use these "reviews" in aid of that decision. I often do, and am glad when folks put even a smattering of information out there to help me.
Lucille The plot isn't the main driver of this novel I find, but the characters and the emotions. It hasn't spoilt it for me one iota.
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