I was nearly bowled over by an idea this morning while I was in the shower. Unfortunately, it wasn't related to my writing. It was related to a discussion Melissa Wiley and I had at A Chair, A Fireplace & A Tea Cozy. We sort of highjacked one of Liz's posts to talk about book reviews, book recommendations, book analysis, and other related topics.
At one point I mentioned that I disliked using the terms "negative" and "positive" to describe reviews. I don't believe a thoughtful discussion of a book's pros and cons is "negative." My only complaint about the use of the words "positive review" is that I think it suggests that there are also negative ones out there lurking about.
What happened this morning was that I came up with something to replace them with--analytical response and recommendation. That's it. That's all I'm going to be saying here.
Notice I'm even avoiding using the word "review." For one thing, I think it's very loaded right now. People feel too emotional about it. For another, I always worry that reviews are some special kind of writing (which I think is the case with true criticism) that I know next to nothing about. I'm much more comfortable with "response."