Feb 21, 2014


Yesterday was the official three year blogoversary of The Irish Banana Review. 

Three years.

It has been a crazy 3 years, and if you're reading this, I hope you know how much I appreciate you being here. =)

That being said, I have been wrestling with some decisions lately and I've come to a couple conclusions that I think need to be shared with all of you. These decisions are for personal reasons and I'm not going to spend a lot of time preaching or justifying my reasons.

I'm ending the blog and moving to Alaska to be on Deadliest Catch.

Just kidding! We all know I can't handle snow. And touching fish squicks me out. So ... no.

But changes are a-coming. Here's what's going on:

1. New Rating System
When I first started The Irish Banana Review, I graded books much like an English teacher. They were given A - F's and it worked for me. Except when I gave out those D's and F's or - even worse - a DNF. 

I find writing negative reviews to be easier, but what bothered me more was the comments I got from people saying: 'Thanks for the warning - I won't read this.' It always felt ... wrong to me. I never, ever want to discourage people from not reading something.

There is no such thing as an unbiased review unless you're a robot. Every experience, event, moment, and memory colors and twists our perceptions and gives us a different reaction to something we read. The book I hate and want to throw across the room might be the book that you love and re-read a hundred times. And there is nothing wrong with either feeling.

So I've been slowly shifting this blog into only positive reviews. I'll be switching to a starred rating system, and nothing less than 3 stars will be reviewed here. I want a blog that endorses and promotes books. I want people to leave here wanting to read a book, not dismissing it.

I am not saying negative and critical reviews don't have a place. I think they do. And if you have them on your blog, awesome. I am just saying that for me (and Gabrielle), we want to focus on the positive. 

2. All Grown Up
The Irish Banana Review is a mostly YA blog. Yes, sometimes I review some New Adult and a smattering of Middle Grade, but the primary focus is Young Adult. Always has been, always will be. 

But I do find myself reading more and more adult novels. And I want to talk about these novels ... but because I've embraced a young audience here, I don't feel like this is the proper forum for it. So I am starting a second blog called (did you guess it?) All Grown Up. I will be posting adult reviews here once it's up and running. If you're a YA reviewer who also forays into adult and wants to review those books, let me know if you want to review on there, too. 

All Grown Up is not replacing The Irish Banana Review. 80% of what I read is YA/NA and will be reviewed here. But the other 20% will be on All Grown Up where I can talk about grown up books. Sometimes a girl just needs some grown up ... fun.

Get it? Any confusions? Comments? Suggestions? Questions?

All righty then. Until next time.


  1. Love the new blog title Hannah! I know I need a break from YA/NA every now and then as well, so I have to expand into the adult genres to find some balance. Unlike you though, I'm too lazy to start a whole separate blog, so I just post my adult reviews right alongside my YA ones:) I feel like my audience is fairly eclectic though since I've always reviewed both, but I totally understand wanting a completely different forum for adult reads. Can't wait to see what you're reading and reviewing there!

  2. Awesome!! I'm definitely looking forward to your new blog. Like Jenny, I'm too lazy to do a whole separate blog so I blended everything together (when did I start doing this? Last year, maybe? Time flies so who knows.). Good on you for staying positive! I feel the need to share what didn't work sometimes, though I generally stay pretty positive.

  3. Yay! Can't wait to read about the awesome adult books you've been reading! I've wanted to read more adult but I don't know where to start so I'm looking forward to checking out the new blog. :)

  4. Happy blogiversary Hannah!

    I review everything in my blog (like you, about 85% YA), but I hardly have time for one blog, I can't imagine having a second one. Good for you though, I'm looking forward to it :)

  5. I LOVE the fact that you're switching to positive reviews. I'm like you, I only post 3 stars or above, and I know a lot of people feel that takes away from a blog's legitimacy or whatever, but I'm all for talking about books I love, not steering people away from books I didn't like (but they might). Congrats on 3 years and your new blog!

    Mary @ Mary Had a Little Book Blog


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