My interview in LATINIDAD


It was an honor to be interviewed by Marcela Landres for her wonderful newsletter, Latinidad. In the interview, I talk about book reviewing, the things to avoid and what reviewers should embrace.

You can read the interview HERE.




The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing Workshop, February 6 – 24, 2012

I’ll be offering my Slippery Art of Book Reviewing Workshop at Lowcountry Romances Writers from February 6 to 24. The deadline to register is February 2nd. The price: $16.00.

For details, please visit:

This will be a group workshop. If you’re interested in an individual workshop, please visit my workshop page for details.

Happy New Year!

Becoming a Reviewer

I started reviewing about 10-12 years ago, but it wasn’t until 2006-2007 that I came up with the idea of writing The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing. I know this sounds a little corny, but I just woke up one night with the idea.

I thought a book like this was needed because there wasn’t another like it on the market, and I knew that I, for one, would have profited from it when I started reviewing. I proposed the idea to my dear friend, mystery author and reviewer Anne K. Edwards, and invited her to be my co-author. She accepted and we immediately jumped into the project.

The book took about a year to write and we had a marvelous time working on it together. Anne had started reviewing around the same time I had and she shared my passion for reviewing, so we were a perfect match. We made a list of topics in the form of an outline and divided the work between us. We also sent a proposal to publisher Lida Quillen of Twilight Times Books and she loved the idea and immediately sent us a contract, so the book was contracted before we actually finished it—that deadline was helpful in keeping us focused and motivated.

So, in a nutshell, The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing is a how-to book on how to write well-written, well-structured, honest, professional book reviews no matter their type or length. Its primary audience is beginner reviewers but we’ve received wonderful feedback from intermediate reviewers as well, telling us how helpful they found the book.

I’m often asked what makes a good book review. Here are a few tips:

A good book review, whether short or long, is a well-written, honest, thoughtful evaluation of a book, one that points out the good and the ugly. If negative, a good review must also be tactful. I usually, though not always, follow a simple formula for a review, something I learned from Alex Moore, Book Review Editor of ForeWord Magazine: An interesting lead or quote; a short summary of the plot (without ever giving away spoilers or the ending); an evaluation supported by examples or quotes; and a recommendation (or not). A review is written for the reader/consumer in mind, and must help them decide whether or not the book is worth their time and money. It goes without saying that a good review should be free of spelling, grammatical and punctuation errors. Finally, a good review should engage the reader, should hold the reader’s interest and attention.

Currently, I review for, Voice in the Dark, and numerous other publications. Additionally, I offer book reviewing workshops at online conferences and For those interested in private, one-to-one courses, I also offer these from my website.


My workshop at The Muse Online Writer’s Conference

My 7-day workshop on The Art of Reviewing at this year’s Muse Online Writer’s Conference went great!

I’ll be giving another workshop on the art of reviewing (this time, duration will be 3 weeks) at some time in January. Stay tuned for details!

Press release: Slip, slide into the World of Book Reviewing

Slip, slide into the World of Book Reviewing

Enjoy reading and discussing books, why not expand your canvas and slip, slide into the world of book reviewing. How does one write a review and gain recognition one may ask? The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing answers your questions.

PRLog (Press Release) – Jul 11, 2010 – M E D I A R E L E A S E

CONTACT: Lida Quillen

For Immediate Release

Slip, slide into the World of Book Reviewing

Enjoy reading and discussing books, why not expand your canvas and slip, slide into the world of book reviewing. How does one write a review and gain recognition one may ask? The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing by Mayra Calvani and Anne K. Edwards answers many of your questions along with practical advice which will get you started in no time.

Taking the publishing world by storm, The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing first edition quickly became a must have reference tool for new and seasoned book reviewers. The authors acknowledged the fact our high speed information world changes in a nanosecond and embarked on their quest to update The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing and have released the newly revised and updated edition.

Reviews from well established and respected book reviewers continue to pour in:

“The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing should be considered mandatory reading for novice and aspiring book reviewers, as well as having a great deal of enduring value as a reference for even the more experienced reviewer. Additionally, The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing will provide to be informed and informative reading about the book review process for authors, publishers, publicists, booksellers, librarians, and the general reading public.” Reviewed by James Cox, Editor-in-Chief, Midwest Book Review.

“The Slippery Art… is an invaluable resource for anyone interested in book reviews – writers, reviewers, publishers, publicists, librarians, booksellers and readers.”
Reviewed by Francine Silverman, Editor of The Book Promotion Newsletter

It comes as no surprise The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing has the distinct honor of the ForeWord Best Book of the Year Award and the esteem privilege of being listed as required reading at several American and Dutch universities.

The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing
Twilight Times Books

ISBN: 978-1933353227, B&, and of course you can order through your local independent book store.

Anne K. Edwards is an award-winning multi-genre author, reviewer and editor of Voice in the Dark Ezine. Her latest novel is the suspense thriller, Shadows Over Paradise, just released by Twilight Times Books. Visit her website at

Award-winning multi-genre author Mayra Calvani writes fiction and nonfiction for children and adults. She reviews for, The NY Journal of Books and Blogcritics Magazine. She’s had over 300 articles, reviews, interviews and stories published online. Visit her website at

Full Media Kit, Headshot, Book Cover Art and more are available upon request.

The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing workshop

Hi all,

Together with my co-author, Anne K. Edwards, I’ll be offering a one-week workshop on the art of book reviewing. Registration is free, so be sure to check it out.

The workshop will be one of many offered by the Muse Online Writer’s Conference this October.

Topics to be covered will include:

Day 1: Why do you want to become a reviewer? What makes a good reviewer?

Day 2: What makes a good review?

Day 3: How to write a review/Learning the ‘formula’ while developing your own style

Day 4: Benefits & rewards of reviewing for both aspiring and experienced authors

Day 5: Problems you may encounter as a reviewer (Ex. Terrible books, angry authors, etc)

Day 6: Attendees submit review for critiquing for hands-in experience

Day 7: Final Q&A pertaining to reviewing

To register, visit the Muse Online Writer’s Conference.