About Me, and Review Policy
My name is Donna Davis, and I am a retired teacher. An academic’s dream retirement gig is reading all those books that have been calling to us from the corners of our shelves, and so I have gone from the classroom to paradise. This blog has provided me the chance to read and review excellent literature before it hits the stores, and so I am delightfully busy with the printed word.
My purpose in creating this blog is to share books about the things, people, and events that affect every day people the most. I love history from the time of the Industrial Revolution forward, as well as more recent history in the making; Civil Rights and women’s rights; excellent literary fiction; biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs of a wide variety of people, mostly ordinary working folk. We all need to laugh, and so I make a point of reading humor now and then. I also love a good mystery or thriller; I am trying not to read so many of them. It’s a treat to run across a brilliant debut novel, but I don’t accept, read, or review unsolicited manuscripts or self-published work. I also don’t run guest blogs.
This blog recently passed its fourth anniversary. Statistics tell us that most blogs are abandoned by this time. I, however, have found my muse. My numbers are climbing–slowly, but always upward–and more importantly, I am having a really good time reading and sharing.
Net Galley has been an indispensable partner, providing me with the big majority of the galleys I have reviewed here. Since the birth of Seattle Book Mama I have reviewed over 500 books, most of which came to me free of charge. But as you can see from my reviews, a free book isn’t necessarily a good book, and I call ’em like I see ’em.
Most of my favorite books come from the major publishing houses that have learned that although I am not always a flattering reviewer, I am always a dependable one. Special thanks go to Simon and Schuster–and its various imprints–for the hard copies; also to Random House and St. Martin’s Press. I am also grateful to the smaller presses that were willing to take a chance on me and auto-approve my requests when I was new to the field; I continue to review books from Open Road, Dundurn, and Henery. Once in awhile, though not often, I give an unfavorable review and am denied a review copy. That’s just too bad. Without the First Amendment, I am nothing.
This past year I have experimented with publishing only new releases on my home page, and confining books published in earlier years to the page I labeled “Flashback Friday.” Nobody even looked at it, so that feature is ending, and you will occasionally see older titles reviewed on the home page instead.
Whether you read digitally, or prefer to flip open an old-fashioned paper copy and drink in the story there, I hope you’ll join me. And thanks for stopping by!