Are Book Blurbs Helpful or Harmful?

September 17, 2017 | 1

Man Booker judge Colin Thubron expressed frustration with gushing book blurbs, which he says “almost blackmail” readers: “you’re either intellectually or morally incompetent if you don’t love this book or you’ve failed if you haven’t understood it.” Our own Bill Morris tackled the age old question”To Blurb or not Blurb”a few years ago.

is an associate editor for The Millions. She works in academic publishing by day and is a freelance writer and book reviewer by night. She tweets at @CarolynQuimby.

One comment:

  1. I don’t really “mind” blurbs, unless the publisher thinks they’re more important than telling me what the book’s about. Nothing worse than flipping the book over to see what it’s about and ONLY finding what other people think of the book–except having 2-3 pages’ worth in the front of the book, to boot (again without the typical 2-3 paragraph teaser-excerpt).

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