What Are Books?

This question used to have one answer: a multi page document bound between covers. That is no longer the case, with the advent of electronic media and the explosion of devices to view the material available a book may be nothing more than a long string of ones and zeroes in a file that can only be read by translating those bits through an electronic device. We are still trying to decide if that was a good idea. For someone who isn’t certain it was a good idea to climb down out of the trees, that question is too complex for me. Only time will tell whether the paper book will survive current and future advances in technology.

So, the current definition of a book is something like: a document, in any of the forms accepted as appropriate for the material, with a length and complexity that which make it not usual to be read in one sitting. (I know of a couple of really good stories, published in book form, that can be read in one sitting…”Voyager in Night” is a great example, and one of my favorite SF stories.) Books have Authors and usually publishers, however self publishing is becoming more common, so, at a minimum, a book has an Author. Fiction, Non-Fiction, Self-Help, How Toos, Etc. are all literary forms that can be found in a book. If it is questionable, post the review anyway and let others tell you if it was a book or not.

Should you reveal spoilers? That is entirely up to you. It may get you a reputation that isn’t quite what you expected. If you want to reveal spoilers, but give the reader the opportunity to avoid them by giving fair warning. Also, keeping them until the end of your review makes them a bit easier to avoid reading. Some of us, will, of course, need to know…

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