I not only write as a hobby, I also love to read books. And as an indie author, I know fullhand how insanely hard it is to get unbiased reviews which could include very useful honest criticism. Even harder, to get the highly coveted Amazon review because depending on the # of reviews your book gets, the online store will up your rankings and might even help you promote your book without having to move a finger.
Oh, and if that is not enough, Amazon reviews are pivotal to set your foot in the door in order to get a highly desirable Bookbub paid promotion. You need a bare minimum of 100 Amazon reviews minimally of all of your books combined, ideally of the book you want to vy for a promotion. The promotion costs you an arm & a leg (not literally, but almost in money terms), but every author that has done it gains an insane amount of new reads and sales. I've never heard of an author that has done a promo claim the money spent was a waste.
My TBR list is pretty large (but still meager in comparison to a lot of readers out there). One thing that I have been doing is uploading every book from my kindle to my goodreads account along with every ARC ebook I have on my computer. I have found a few interesting things:
1) My full TBR list is around 430 books and has been diminishing over the past few months because I attempt to read whatever I can during my scant free time.
2) I have some books both on my kindle AND as ARC copies which drops that TBR list a few notches.
3) I found today a few books both on my kindle and ARC copies that are current and past participants of the SPFBO contest. I am trying to put a bit more urgency towards reading all of the SPFBO books that I can. Judges and readers alike have comented that the 2017 batch has been unusually good which means that I know that those books will be worth my time. I was pleasantly surprised to know that this year's current finalist Tiger Lily is one of my ARC copies! Yaay! I haven't read any of the 10 finalists yet so it will be fun to read this book soon.
4) I deleted two short story books from my kindle because they no longer exist on amazon and had a pretty much impossible time finding them on goodreads either. The list is big as it is, why waste my time reading a book that I'll be unable to review anyways?
5) I'm glad that I organized things a little because I also did something new: I created two separate lists for really short books that are under 50 pages, under 200 pages and lastly but not least, another ticked box for books with 20 or less reviews. As an author, I know that it's insanely hard to cross the 20 review barrier and some books on my TBR have 0 reviews!
I kind of like doing this organization because now, I have realized I have 30 books that are 50 pages or less. Those books are indeed super quickies and while I've had a lot of 3 star experiences with short stories, I have read a small amount that are 5 stars in my biased opinion. Oh, and now that I know which of these are the super quickies, I can read a bunch of them in a day and get them out of the way. If I can slice the TBR list to around 350 in a short amount of time, that will be great. Even better, some of these quickie books have almost no reviews. Extra bonus!
So now, I will be reading those quickie short books in order to delete them from my harddrive and kindle to free space. I will be continuing on reading whatever spfbo books available with a certain degree of urgency, just 53 unread books waiting to be read.
Will I ever create a book review blog? I don't know. I don't want to do that in this blog because I want to try to focus more on my own fantasy book series. Plus, the real biggie for authors is the amazon and GR reviews. So far I've never had someone cruising on my blog to ask me to read and review their book, but now you at least know where my TBR list sort of stands.
Feel free to check my Goodreads profile HERE and see for yourself. Maybe one of the books I praised might be of your interest or something.