Elements of a Review

I have a mental list of elements for which I look when reading a book for review. They are:

1. Hook – Does the story grab you from the beginning
2. Setting/Descriptions/Sense of Place – Is it evocative
3. Characters/Character Development – Do they come to life, do you know their back story, are they fully-developed
4. Dialogue – Does it work and provide a sense the character
5. Plot – Does it work, does it make sense
6. Devices – Well-done effective twists, coincidences that are acknowledged.
7. Cadence/flow/style – Does it keep you involved
8. Originality – This is an extra points element for when I find a story that is truly original
9. Overall quality of writing – What is my immediate reaction upon finishing the book.

The things which may cause me to lower my review are:

1. Unnecessary or spoiler prologue
2. Portents and end-of-chapter cliff-hangers
3. Too many characters, and too many with similar names or initials
4. Too many POVs - more than two starts to annoy me, but I prefer none
5. Flashbacks

My favorites are stories that begin on page one and take you, force you to read, straight through to the end.

And there you have it. 
Happy Reading!

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