Monday, 20 December 2010

The Bookette's BBC by Keren David

If you’re a British author and you find yourself getting more internet reviews in 2011 than ever before your books receive next year, it’s likely you’ve got one woman to thank. The Bookette is the alias of Becky, a school librarian from Essex, who manages to juggle a demanding job and her own writing ambitions with running one of the most popular children’s book blogs in Britain. She has nearly 500 followers on her blog - but is read by many more than that. Her reviews are always thoughtful and balanced, but she’s not scared to put the boot in when she feels she must. She’s a reviewer you can trust, and she brings her deep knowledge of children’s literature to the task of assessing new books.
She’s never satisfied with just reviewing alone though. She’s running a campaign to get Katherine Roberts’ Song Quest back in print, promoting it by organising a blog tour and a cover competition.
And her latest idea should shine a light on a lot of British books. The Bookette has launched a new meme - a feature that other bloggers sign up to - the British Books Challenge (BBC) 2011. This offers prizes and promotion to bloggers who sign up to read and review books by British authors, new and old, during 2011. The challenge is for British bloggers, who are encouraged to read 12 home-grown books; and to international bloggers who can read six for a ‘Winston Churchill’ or 12 for the full ‘Royal Family’. Read 50 British books and you qualify for a crown.
Becky has prize packs from British publishers to help promote the challenge, and she’s already signed up more than 40 bloggers for the challenge. If they all read and review an average of 10 books each, that’s 400 reviews. That’s a whole lot of internet buzz for all sorts of British authors, who can find it very difficult to get noticed at home or abroad.
So, on behalf of British authors generally - goodness, I never thought I'd be able to write that! - many thanks to Becky for the work she’s put in to organise this challenge. And thank you to all the book bloggers out there, who take time and much trouble to read and report on our efforts. You’re unpaid for all your hard work, but not unappreciated. In a world where review space in print media is ever-shrinking, your influence is growing every day.
And in the spirit of  her challenge, here are some British books I'm looking forward to reading in 2011:
The Opposite of Amber, by Gillian Philip; Jessie hearts NY by Keris Stainton, Kiss, Date, Love, Hate by Luisa Plaja, Hidden by Miriam Halahmy, Entangled by Cat Clarke,  Divine Freaks by Fiona Dunbar, A Year Without Autumn by Liz Kessler and  Sequins Stars and Spotlights by Sophia Bennett. How about you?

12 comments:

catdownunder said...

Another excuse to read - not that I need one of course! Thankyou.

Michele Helene (Verilion) said...

I signed up for the BBC a few weeks ago. I'm a Brit aboard, so thank you for all the suggestions.

adele said...

I love the Bookette! She was very kind to Dido a few months back...this is a good idea. I am about to read a proof of Sally Prue's ICE MAIDEN which is out next Feb. The title is very appropriate at the moment and Sally (okay, I admit it,she's a friend of mine!!) is a wonderful writer who deserves ot be better known and more widely read.

Miriam Halahmy said...

Very well deserved praise Keren and I am so looking forward to featuring on Becky's blog next year.

Celia Rees said...

Thanks for spreading the word about the Bookette. I'm so in awe of people with this kind of dedication, drive and energy. Respect to Becky!What a great idea and much needed publicity for all those books not not lucky enough to get star billing from their publishers. So much more fascinating and worthwhile than Jamie Byng's million book givaway of the usual suspects.

Becky said...

*Thank you* I am so embarrassed by this post (but also flattered beyond belief). You would not believe how red my cheeks are right now. I could give Santa a run for his money.

There are so many books that I am looking forward to reading next year but at the top of the list is Bloodstone (Rebel Angels Book 2) by Gillian Philip.

In the spirit of all things British last night I felt (for some bizarre reason but I guess it is a Christmas thing) the urge to read some Dickens. I started Great Expectations...

Candy Gourlay said...

fantastic! i'll spread the news as well!

Penny Dolan said...

A brilliant idea! Thanks, Keren and Becky the Bookette!

Linda Strachan said...

What a great post, Keren, everyone should hear about Becky the Bookette - she definitely deserves all the praise she gets, (no need to blush Becky!).

The BBC is such a good idea there are so many great books to read!

Katherine Langrish said...

I'm sure I can join this challenge too - the Bookette rocks!

Savita Kalhan said...

Great post, Keren! My blog in January was going to be about all the amazing online book reviewers and bloggers - including the most awesome Bookette! They do an absolutely amazing job - and for most of them it's not even their day job, it's their hobby! Long may they reign!

Nicola Morgan said...

Fabulous - well done, Becky and thank you Keren! I don't do reviews on my blog so i can't enter the challenge, but I'll do my best to promote it.

I like the idea of reviewing older books too, as publishers are not usually nearly good enough with backlist titles.