Suggested by JM:
I receive a lot of review books, but I have never once told lies about the book just because I got a free copy of it. However, some authors seem to feel that if they send you a copy of their book for free, you should give it a positive review.
Do you think reviewers are obligated to put up a good review of a book, even if they don’t like it? Have we come to a point where reviewers *need* to put up disclaimers to (hopefully) save themselves from being harassed by unhappy authors who get negative reviews?
I really don't understand how this question can even be an issue. If a book review is not honest, what is the point? If I wanted to read only positive biased reviews I would go to the authors website, or read the blurbs on the book cover. I don't think it is kind to bash books, but to fairly point out the flaws that you see in a book is your perogative as a reviewer. And if I want my review to be of any value, or have people trust my reviews, it is important that I be as honest as possible.
As for authors, I think that they need to think of a review by an independent reviewer the same way that they would that of any professional reviewer. You wouldn't expect to see only positve reviews in the New York Times, or any other paper; and you shouldn't expect only good reviews from bloggers.