Whenever I write a book review here, I always browse other people’s reviews, too. Mostly I do it after writing my own but sometimes before. They don’t change my opinion, and I don’t lift content from them, but sometimes they help me clarify my own thoughts: things that I feel vaguely but can’t quite put my finger on. It’s also useful and interesting to read opinions that differ from my own.

Often I also read reviews before I buy books. In London I could go to a bookshop and find new interesting books just by browsing, but here that’s not so easy – the shops carry very limited ranges of English books. So I have to resort to the internet, which means no browsing, which means I have to have some idea of what I’m looking for. Mostly I find them via SF Site or other blogs, and then I go to Amazon and/or to Google to get a second, third, and fourth opinion.

This has been one of the reasons why it’s been so hard for me to find Swedish books to read (or Estonian, which is even harder): almost nobody reviews these books. There are only reviews for the absolute top of the bestseller list, and even then they’re often very few – all I find with Google is dozens of copies of the publisher’s blurb and maybe one or two reviews by the major newspapers. Anything older or less mainstream, and I find nothing at all. Same for Estonian books.