Book Ratings – When Over 18 Isn’t Quite Enough #Reviews Matter

Amazon Reviews Feed Authors

Star ratings have been around for as long as I can remember…and that’s a pretty long time. I’ve always believed anything from three stars and up is wonderful. However, those stars don’t mean nearly as much as what the reader has to say about your book or rather, their written review. There is so much to be learned from well thought out, honest reviews. Be they good, bad or somewhere in between, those thoughts matter more often than they don’t.

AMBER WAKE received a three star review today. To be honest, based on the reviewer’s comments, I believe she was quite generous. She was very complimentary on the writing, the characters and the story. However, the reader felt the book was for mature audiences only and I agree with her 100%.


The book is well-written, the characters are complex and interesting. However, this book, in my opinion, is definitely for mature audiences. There are slang words for male body parts, unsettling adult situations, and material I skipped over in order to not read to my teen-aged granddaughter. I knew it was a pirate’s tale, but until about chapter five there was nothing objectionable. I read to my husband whose vision is not good enough to read to himself. Our granddaughter was visiting with us while I was reading. I had to skip a lot. Thus, I felt embarrassed at some of the material. I put the book aside and did not finish it.”

Is there graphic violence? YES because, well, pirates

Is there profanity? Very little

Are there sexual situations? Nothing graphic or gratuitous

With the above questions answered, I’ve considered consulting my co-author to possibly add in the author’s notes that the book is for mature readers and give it say, an 18+ rating. However, there are droves of readers who are far beyond 18 years of age who still may find some of the subject matter not to their taste and even objectionable and that’s okay.

I’d personally like to thank this reviewer for two reasons; first, for her honest opinion and for sharing that opinion so others who may be put off by certain subject matter, don’t go into this story looking for Pirates of the Caribbean or at the very least, a Disney pirate tale and second, for enticing those who enjoy this type of realistic, although often times shocking and even ugly side of history, exactly what they’re looking for and more. With her praise, as well as her dislike, she has done this wonderful book so much service that I simply couldn’t go to bed tonight without sharing it.

As authors, we always hope everyone who reads our books will love them but the reality is not every story is right for everyone. Leave your reviews anyway…please. They mean so much more than you know!


6 thoughts on “Book Ratings – When Over 18 Isn’t Quite Enough #Reviews Matter

  1. Well, I think it depends on what you like and what not. And as you say not everyone is going to like a certain book and specific kind of content. I used to read romance novels as a teenager. Heck I even read Stephen King back then. None of your scenes where shocking to me in the least.

  2. I really think this is an isolated instance. The reviewer sounds elderly and sometimes that age group tends to list to the side of innocence. Life is not innocent nor is the history presented in the novel. Children and I am talking about my 15 year old granddaughters, are much more sophisticated nowadays. Your book is rated correctly. Don’t fret. There will always be folks to find fault. You and Ronovan Hester wrote an excellent novel. ❤️❤️❤️

    • Hi Colleen!
      I agree with you completely. However, I wanted to point it out because I know I’m not the only one who has experienced this. I liked this review. Actually as you read, I’m great with it. Reason being, it will deter those who prefer a more innocent read and hopefully invite those who are looking for a more gritty and realistic approach to historical fiction. I truly feel bad for this sweet lady. I hope she finds what she’s comfortable with. 🙂
      Thanks for your comment!

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