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Review Policy

I love to read and I love free books! But I also have a full-time job, two kids and interests beyond reading. So, please read on to see whether I am currently accepting books for review, and what I like and don't like to read.

Do I accept books for review?
If you're a publicist, author or publisher, please feel free to contact me and I’d be happy to consider writing a review. However, please also note that I receive about 50 requests per week and cannot respond to every one. If your book sounds interesting to me, I will respond within a few days. If you don't hear from me, it's likely that I am either too busy or not interested. To help ensure that the books you offer me are books I will more likely accept, please continue reading.

What do I like to read?
This year, I'm focusing on fiction. I prefer fictional novels that feature interesting characters and a well-developed, fairly realistic plot.

Favorite genres:
  • Mysteries and crime novels
  • Thrillers
  • Contemporary fiction 
  • Literary fiction
  • Historical fiction
What I don't read:
I don’t accept chick lit, romance, fantasy, paranormal, religious/inspirational, or young children's literature for review.

Where do my reviews appear?
In addition to publishing reviews here on My Book Retreat, I also publish all reviews on Goodreads (400+ friends). I am willing to publish reviews on Amazon as well; just ask. I promote my reviews on Twitter (1400+ followers), Facebook (740+ likes) and Pinterest (1.5k monthly viewers).

Please keep in mind that all of my reviews feature my own honest opinion, regardless of whether I receive the book from a publicist or author, or get it from the library or bookstore. For more information, please read my Disclosure Statement.

If you have a book you think I'd enjoy, please contact me.

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Banned Books Week: Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park

This is the end of Banned Books Week and unfortunately, I haven't had a lot of time to write about banned books this year. But I did want to include at least one post about it, so today I wanted to share one of the book series that it seems most people are surprised to find on the list: Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park.

According to Wikipedia:
The Junie B. Jones series came in at #71 on the American Library Association's list of the Top 100 Banned or Challenged Books from 2000-2009. Reasons cited are poor social values taught by the books and Junie B. Jones not being considered a good role model due to her mouthiness and bad spelling/grammar. This is an interesting example of a banned book. Many times there are serious, controversial topics featured in books that are challenged. Things like homosexuality, drugs, vulgar language, etc. You can actually understand why people may not want their children to read those books, and why they may challenge their inclusion in school libra…

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Getting back to blogging

It seems that blogging has dropped to the bottom of my list for the past year, and was pretty low for the year or two prior to that. I love to read, and am continuing to do so, but as my regular readers know I haven't been around much. My last blog post was almost a year ago!!

There are many things that have taken me away from blogging. Work has been much more challenging and interesting these past few years, but that means I really don't want to get back on the computer when I get home at night - or on the weekends.

Family life has been more busy with kids having multiple activities in the evenings, leaving little time to just hang out and write about the books that I read.

I will admit to a bit of a Facebook addiction, which means way too much time spent scrolling through my newsfeed instead of doing something more productive. This is one of the things I'm working on and hoping that this will free up some time for getting back to the blog.

Overall, life is good. Work is …