By Paula-Yuan Gregory
Have you ever heard of LitPick Book Reviews? The student-run review website? This site is great because, although it is designed for students, educators and parents can also benefit from it.
A look back in history…
When Seth Cassel was in 4th grade, he couldn’t get his hands on enough books. He didn’t just love to read, he also liked to express his opinions through written reviews.
His father, Gary Cassel, fostered this passion and helped him create the website Flamingnet, where Seth could go online and post reviews about the latest book he was reading. This website earned Seth worldwide recognition.
Nine years later, as a Harvard undergrad, Seth and a couple of friends decided to renew his old website and rebrand it as LitPick. Upon renewal, Seth expanded its global presence to students, educators, and libraries.
This expansion of presence and student involvement has allowed Seth to succeed in his mission to promote reading and writing in students of all ages. As a part of this mission, he implemented a student review program, which I am here to talk about.
The student review program is a great way for you to get even more involved in the literary world. All you have to do is create an account. Once your account is created, you choose the books you want to review and they will be sent to your email as eBooks, free of charge.
Sounds like a dream to me; endless supply of books! And the best part is, you can keep them after your review has been received.
Now you’ve learned about the student review and reading portion of this program, but what about the writing part?
Well, this is where LitPick’s staff of underwriters come in. The underwriters are there as a resource for your improvement. Once you send in your review, an underwriter will receive it and look it over. They will then send your review back to you with suggestions on how to make it a stronger and clearer piece of writing. After you take their critiques into consideration and make your edits, you send your review back to LitPick to be published on their website.
This is a pretty cool system because it validates your writing skills and offers professional feedback on how to make them even stronger. Some writers wait years and pay a lot for this type of critique. With LitPick, you can have it for free, and on writing that you really care about.
Not only are your reviews supporting your writing interests and LitPick itself, but you are also supporting local authors and publishers! Your writing matters and it has been shown that these reviews directly affect the sales of the authors and publishers that participate.
Whose opinion is more trustworthy than a young reader like yourself, when it comes to reading children’s and young adult books?
So, if you’re looking for some writing experience that has an impact and meaning, LitPick could be the place for you.
Parent and Teacher Benefits
I’ve spoken a good amount about the benefits of LitPick for students, but LitPick’s resources extend to parents and educators.
LitPick features a section called “Pearls and Tips,” which you can find on their website by scrolling down to their navigation menu. This section holds information about the effects of positive parenting on student reading, and suggestions for increased involvement.
It also has a wide range of writing tips and tricks, including essays, screenplays, novels, inspiration strikers, and more. Educators can use these resources in the classroom to prepare and excite their students for writing projects.
Parents can also make use of these resources if they want to improve their child’s critical reading/comprehension skills. After browsing LitPick’s website, I found that I learned a lot about new ways to inspire and educate children.
All these resources are free and easily accessible. They have been proven effective by past parents and educators who have used them, and LitPick has become so popular that many schools and libraries have implemented its use to promote reading in a fun and engaging way.
Now that you’ve reached the end of this post, don’t you think this website sounds great? Almost too good to be true. But don’t worry, it isn’t!
On their site, they have testimonials that are there for your perusal. Along with their testimonials, you can also see a list of their partnerships, with presses like the famed Candlewick Press, St. Martin’s Press, and even Amazon Marketplace.
If you still aren’t sold, then sign up and try it out yourself! I really enjoy using this resource, and I hope you will too. If you are a writer and want to learn how to get reviews for your books with LitPick Book Reviews, stay tuned for the second part of this article.