Review Policy

Notice: I apologise I can’t take nor fulfill review request for the time being due to work commitments. Many thanks for expressing interest in my blog. I will come back when I am ready. All the best!

The genres I like to read are literary fiction and popular non-fiction. I also read thrillers, historical fiction, humor and don’t mind reading heavy non-fictions provided they are interesting. The non-fictions that I usually read are travel writing, Asian and Middle East politics, Finance and Economics, Personal Development, Management books and memoirs of person of interest to me. I only read short stories from my favourite authors. You can see my catalogue on books read and reviewed in this blog: Review Index A to Z

I’m not interested in novels which are classified as Young Adults (YA), fantasy, paranormal or romance.

I am happy to read Advanced Reader Copy and e-books via my Kindle. I juggle a demanding career and I read whenever I can. I try to keep up with my reading but I will aim to publish my review before or just after the publication date.

I will provide an honest view about the book and under no circumstances will I be obliged to provide a favourable one if I do not like it. I receive unsolicited review copy only if I am interested in the subject matter. Very rarely would I abandoned a book but when I do and if it is a review copy, I will still write a fair review on it.

I am not doing the review in exchange of free books but for the love of books. I have been running the blog since 30 November 2008 and I like to introduce new books to my blog reader occasionally. I am not short of books to read. I have an estimated 500 books that I am supposed to read from my shelf and Kindle and unlimited access to two public libraries in Reading borough and Westminster London. I purchase books from used book stores and Amazon.co.uk too.

Besides my blog, I place my reviews on Netgalley, Goodreads and Shelfari.

You may contact me by dropping a comment on this blog, at Goodreads and Shelfari.



10 thoughts on “Review Policy

  1. Hi Jov,

    Finally!! I found someone who can review humor.

    I request you to review my work, “Yet Another SE(Story of an Indian Software Engineer)”

    My name:Simon Saha

    Book Genre:Fiction – Humor, Satire

    Word Count:19,746

    Release Date 28th March 2013

    Book Link in Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00C3LYO6A

    Book Synopsis: There is a marked difference between a ‘Software Engineer’ and an ‘Indian Software Engineer’. An Indian SE is one who can adjust to any recession condition and any salary figure. The super-human can manage the software, the management and the client with one hand and impossible deadline with the other.

    He spends his office hours not only to develop the software. But his time is also spent in trying to develop the client’s and manager’s understanding on whatever is getting developed. In return he is rewarded for his ability to impress his masters …. and sometimes for his hard work too.

    An Indian becomes a Software Engineer not because he is interested in the field (yeah, those people are there too). But his prime motive behind joining the field is because there was nothing else to do and everybody does that. If placed properly, this field also brings him money, prestige and a “good wife”.

    When a SE arrives in the industry, he struggles to find space to apply his brains. However, he rarely gets the chance to do so because of his position, client’s misunderstanding and the presence of ‘smarter dudes’ who always appear superior to him. Those who can’t adjust to the environment drown in this Ocean of IT professional. Only those who learn the art of utilizing their position to their advantage, survive.

    This story is about another such SE stuck deep in the Indian IT sector. In spite of challenges, this guy is clever enough to turn the opportunities in his favor. Instead of adjusting to the situations, he changes the situation itself to his advantage. In this way he earns his promotion, on-site and also manages to get married in time.

    About Me: I am Simon Saha, a Software Engineer from New Delhi, India. I have been working in the software industry for 7 years. This is my first novel which I took me more than 2 years to write.

    My Web Presence: http://www.facebook.com/simon.saha.98 , simon.saha@gmail.com

    Best Regards
    Simon Saha

    Posted by SIMON SAHA | May 24, 2013, 4:59 am
  2. Jo, I’m a friend of Andrew Blackman and have featured him a couple of times on my blog. In some ways his interests and mine are similar – stories about modern people told with an interesting twist, backed by solid writing. I was wondering if my own novel would be your cup of tea? It’s best classed as a modern literary story. I don’t want to leave unwanted links here, but if you’d like to hear more, let’s email!

    Posted by rozmorris @NailYourNovel @ByRozMorris | June 4, 2013, 8:16 am
  3. Hey JoV!

    I’d love to enquire you about my novel I’m launching in August. It’s called Poisoned Waters. Here’s the blurb. Email at ermisenda@live.com if you’d like me to send you an email about the launch tour.

    Bloody mistakes, ugly scars, and beautiful lies. A tale of corruption.

    Helen Gardener is murdered on a trans-Atlantic cruise. The Diamond Royale sails from Southampton to New York with her murderer aboard. Set in the 1950s, Poisoned Waters follows the stories of seven unfortunate characters and how they are affected by her death. Was it merely an accident? Mr Phillips, the owner of the ship, and sponsor of the cruise, rules with an iron fist, in search of something, or someone.

    Lies spiral out of control as the suspects try to survive the final days on board. Conflicted by their sense of morals, greed, and lust, they realise what kind of people they really are. Who will rise? Who will fall? Who was Helen’s murderer?

    – Ermisenda

    Posted by Ermilia | June 4, 2013, 9:52 am
  4. Dear JoV,
    Our firm represents Robert Dresner, author of contemporary fiction novel THE COMING, and I would like to offer a free review copy of the novel for your consideration.
    A war of attrition between Israel and its nuclear-armed neighbors heats up. Muslim is fighting Jew for possession of the Holy Land. Jew is fighting Jew in an unprecedented struggle for control of the West Bank. The super-powers are preparing to impose their own maddening solution to these conflicts when the world incurs the Vengeance of Islam, a radical terrorist group heralding a catastrophic agenda.
    Through an odd twist of fate, the outcome rests in the hands of Rifka Kliensfeld, an embittered Holocaust survivor, and Shmuael Rabinowitz, an impoverished old rabbi. She measures her life against the number of dead she has known; he survives on the promise of peace in the name of the almighty God who hears his prayers, yet never answers.
    Together, Rifka and the old rabbi form the heart and soul of Israel, and they are bound to contemplate the meaning of life. How many must die in an effort to save the faith? How many must live to justify the sacrifice?
    We can provide you with a review copy in your preferred formatting, as per your request. Ideally, we would like to have the review published by September. If you have additional questions, or if you are unable to provide a review but would consider hosting Robert for a guest post, please let me know.
    Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

    Posted by Amanda Barrentine | June 24, 2013, 11:54 pm
  5. Hi, it sounds as if my book is just the sort of thing you would enjoy. It is called “Me & Gus on the Roof of the World”. It is the true story of a trip I went on from Nepal to China and the hilarious consequences of altitude sickness. It involves escape attempts from various hospitals in Tibet, organ harvesting Tibetan gangsters, evil mind control experiments, a Chinese military firing squad….oh yeah and some pandas.
    You don’t have to review it if you don’t want to, I just thought you might enjoy reading it. Here is the link:

    Posted by Danny Breslin | September 16, 2013, 2:15 pm
  6. Hello JoV,

    I see travel writing is a major theme of your reviews. While my book may be on the lighter side of much of the travel writing you’ve covered, there are serious undertones too.

    My recent release The Return of the Mullet Hunter is the second in my series of book charting my ongoing search for places around the world with the word “mullet” in their name – a journey that takes me from the desert of California to being a media star in New Zealand.

    Granted, it’s a whimsical adventure inspired by the dreadful 1980s haircut, but is also a reflection on the obscure and out of the way corners of the globe that the mission takes me to, the many fascinating people I meet, and the dilemma that arises when wanderlust and curiosity come face to face with realism and a depleting bank balance.

    You can find out more on Amazon at http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00H12QT6Y

    Let me know if you’re interested and I can send you a copy.

    Posted by Simon Varwell | December 8, 2013, 4:05 pm
  7. Hello, my name is Jon Ziegler, and I am the author of The How-Not-To Guide To Parenting and Marriage. I am contacting you in hopes that you will consider reviewing the book and possibly featuring it on your site.

    The How-Not-To Guide To Parenting and Marriage is a collection of humorous stories that each start out or are on a subject that nearly all parents and spouses can identify with. But then I like to take the familiar, and work it into the unexpected and sometimes ridiculous in order to make the stories stand out from the usual “funny things my kids said and did” kind of family humor.

    Stories from the collection have been featured on The Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop website, and several popular blogs including Sweatpants and Coffee, Mamapotamus, Fascinations of a Vanilla Housewife, Mommy’s Playbook, We are the Dino Family, and The Brown Girl with Long Hair.

    The book can be found on Amazon for Kindle and Kindle smart phone and tablet apps here:

    Below are a list of sites who have reviewed the book (just to show that the book is taken seriously by a few people other than my family and friends who would not tell me if it sucked).
    I can provide a copy in Word, PDF, or MOBI.

    Thank you for your time and consideration!

    Jon Ziegler


    Posted by Jon Ziegler | January 23, 2014, 3:30 am
  8. Hi Jov,
    I am writing to see whether you would like to review Lucinda Riley’s new novel, ‘The Midnight Rose’ which spans over 100 years in India and England.
    It has been out for a couple of weeks and is already proving to be a success. Lucinda is an international bestselling author – here is her website, http://www.lucindariley.com
    Please let me know if you would like to receive a copy for review, either a hard copy or as a pdf.
    I look forward to hearing from you.
    With best wishes,
    PA to Lucinda Riley

    Posted by Olivia Riley | January 30, 2014, 1:06 pm
  9. Dear JoV:

    I would like to invite you to check out Talk of the Country, the third smart, sexy, funny and sweet book in the five-volume Tales from Jamaica series (Wood and Water Publishing, New York; 12/21/13). The genre is Literary Fiction.

    Many themes are explored and developed in the Tales from Jamaica series. The series largely follows ‘L.C.’ (a thirty-something, ivy-league bad-boy) and ‘Michelle’ (a pretty second-year Jamaican university student) as they explore the island in search of romance, adventure, and answers to deep spiritual questions. The books are intentionally written in a rapid and fast-paced style.

    If you feel so moved, I would very much appreciate your honest assessment in a review anytime at your convenience. I would be very pleased to provide a review copy of one or more titles in the series, especially if you would prefer to start at the beginning of the series.

    Links to the first four books in the series are provided immediately below (the final book in the series, How Water Walks, will be released February 14). All five books are between 35,000-45,000 words each.


    Should you have any questions, or just want to talk, please feel welcome to contact me anytime by any of the means below:


    Take care,
    L.C. Andrews

    Posted by L.C. Andrews | January 31, 2014, 1:08 am
  10. Hello,

    I would be very interested in you reviewing my new travel narrative which will be published the beginning of March. Titled “Misspelled Paradise: A Year in a Reinvented Colombia,” the book is a humorous look at my year in a country that many only know as a place with armed rebels, drugs, and good coffee.

    Please let me know if you think you may be interested in reviewing the book and how this process and the timeline would work. I am able to send paperback, Kindle, or pdf versions of the book.

    You can also head to my website (http:///bryannaplog.com) or Goodreads to learn more about “Misspelled Paradise” or me. Be sure to let me know if you have any questions.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Many thanks,

    Posted by bryannaplog | February 2, 2014, 2:18 am

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Ratings Defined

0 = Abandon the book after first chapter

1 = Waste of paper, we will see what the environmentalist say about this!

2 = Skip it, read the book if you have got nothing better to do

2.5 = An average book, easily forgettable.

3 = A good read.

3.5 = A good entertaining read, a page-turner

4 = So glad that I read the book, a book with substance and invaluable for future reference

4.5 = So glad that I read the book, would pester everyone to read it, invaluable, I would want to own it and wouldn't mind a second read (something that I seldom do)

5 = The book is so good that I feel like I am on scale 4 and 4.5, and more, it blew me away and lingers on my head for weeks!

Books Read

JoV's bookshelf: read
Hold Tight
The Fault in Our Stars
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
The Thief
Catching Fire
A Tale for the Time Being
Into the Darkest Corner
The Liars' Gospel
Goat Mountain
Strange Weather In Tokyo
Strange Shores
And the Mountains Echoed
Ten White Geese
One Step Too Far
The Innocents
The General: The ordinary man who became one of the bravest prisoners in Guantanamo
White Dog Fell from the Sky
A Virtual Love
The Fall of the Stone City

JoV's favorite books »
Share book reviews and ratings with JoV, and even join a book club on Goodreads.

Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking. - Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)

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