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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Book Review Sites

Oh, how I wish books were rated like movies are! I really wish I knew ahead of time the language and sexual situations that each book contained.  I am somewhat sensitive to these, though I do read (and listen to on CD) books that contain mild situations or language.  Eventually, this is going to be even more important to me as my children begin reading independently.

Just last week I listened to Charlotte's Web to see if my daughter might be ready for this classic tale.  Though she is four years of age, she is definitely not ready to hear about how Wilbur is supposed to dinner...and becomes depressed...and to top it all off his best friend dies, even though his life is saved.  A great book?  Yes!  Appropriate for my daughter?  No.  Not yet.

So what is a parent to do?  Well, for me, I read blogs, ask friends, and use our church library in addition to the public library. ( I know that just because a book is at a Christian bookstore or church does not mean that it is biblically sound.  Many Christian publishers now allow curse words in their books.  I have no tolerance for that, though I do not mind mild language in non-Christian books.)   For many book bloggers, I think if you even just ASKED for an author recommendation, they might be able to help you if you give them some criteria!

  • Christian Children's Book Review- CCBR reviews lots of Christian children's books (for all ages), but they also have highlighted a few mainstream books (in detail) like The Magic Treehouse series and the Twilight series.  
  • Library of Clean Reads- Laura is an author herself (great book!), and reviews adult and children's books.  She rates them as needed, but most of them are "clean."
  • Squeaky Clean Reads- This is a site that lets YOU, the reader, rate books!  Of course, you can also search for books by title or genre to find out if a book you are interested in is clean.  I haven't used this site nearly enough since I just recently learned of it.
  • Good Clean Reads- This site has a very clear rating system that lets you know what to expect when it comes to language, sexuality, violence.  Another new site to me, but one I intend to use a lot!
  • Reading to Know- Carrie reviews children and adult books, fiction and nonfiction from a variety of publishers.  She is my good friend, and we like many of the same books, so she is a great resource for recommendations for me...and maybe you, too.
  • The Literate Mother- This has a wide variety of mainstream books, most unfamiliar to me, but still worth including in this list.
  • Focus on the Family Book Reviews for Parents- Includes a plot summary, Christian beliefs, authority roles, authority roles, profanity/graphic violence, kissing/sex/homosexuality, and discussion topics in each review to help parents understand what to expect in a book.  (By the way, if interested in the same reviews, plus opinions, of movies, check out Plugged In.)
Where do you turn to for book reviews?  Please add any additional legitimate resources in the comments and let us know why you like them!  (Spam will be deleted!)  


Shonda said...

Thanks for the list. I actually don't read too many book reviews (well, blogs mostly) on websites. I mostly listen for recommendations from friends and then research that out.

Ticia said...

Common Sense Media, which might be the focus on the family one.

Carrie said...

Thanks for the link. And I'm going to have to check some of these other sources out!

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