Sunday, November 25, 2007

Here is how this review board works

Here is how this review board works. I record or rate the following information for each book I review:

Date of Publication.
(if applicable).
Awards (if applicable). Note, however, that these awards can often be misleading as to the quality of the book.
Age Appropriateness. This is a tricky area. I will do my best based on the reading level and graphic quality of the book, but feel free to disagree with this assessment based on other information. You know your children better than I do.

Overall Rating: This will be based on the moral and literary quality of the book and, once again, this is a subjective rating.

Objectionable Content:

Language. I will list what specific negative words are used (or understandable substitutes; for example, cr*p). I won’t note how many times these are used unless there’s a very large number or a very small number.

Violence. I will attempt to note every instance and circumstance. For example: “boy is chased through the woods and threatened with a sword” or “dead bodies are seen on ground.”

Adult Content. As you can imagine, this is a tricky area. My goal is to provide you with enough information to make the judgment call yourself. I will try to note instances and explicitness. Depending on the author, some instances would probably only be understood by an older child but are not explicit enough to be understood by a younger child. I will also try to note instances that would affect the morality of the situation. For example, casual fornication vs. kissing by a married couple.

Disturbing or scary elements: These would be occurrences that don’t involve violence, but might still affect the sensibilities, especially of a child.

Morally problematical content: This is where I cover the “fuzzy grey areas.” Some parents might object to magic in a work, while others might object to the fact that the hero is a compulsive liar. I will try to cover anything here that one might find morally objectionable, and let you be the judge.

Artistic Content. This will be a general statement about the literary quality of the book, based on my experience and education.

Overall Message. What does the book say overall? What issues are addressed in it?

Buy it here: I will try to make sure that I have at least one vendor for every book that I recommend. I will say, however, that if I find a book to be without any redeeming value, I will not offer a link for purchase from my review. This method is also how I plan on funding the time it takes for me to post these reviews. Please seriously consider buying through my site to help fund this effort.

That all being said, I will very seldom make a moral judgment on the quality of the work I’m reviewing. I will try to provide you, as a Christian parent, with enough information to make your own call as to whether each book is appropriate for your unique, precious child. Making sure your child reads quality literature during his or her formative years is the moral, ethical responsibility of every Christian parent. My goal is to help you choose wisely. Enjoy!

No comments: