I received The Blogger’s Survival Guide: Tips and Tricks for Parent Bloggers, Wordsmiths and Enthusiasts by Lexie Lane and Becky McNeer free to review though Audiobook Jukebox. This is a how-to guide to assist newbie bloggers in setting up their blog, marketing it and monetising it. Thank you for the opportunity to review this title.
This is the first time I’ve listened to a non-fiction reference book in audiobook format and I don’t think it’s something I will do much of in the future. On many occasions the authors referred to online resources to supplement or backup their tips, and I didn’t find the format a great way to be able to pick up those links. In all fairness the narrator did enunciate very clearly and repeat the urls where necessary, but still for me it was an additional hurdle of the audiobook format. Additionally, with reference books I find I’m more likely to want to refer quickly to a previous or subsequent section in the book – not easy in audiobook format.
What I liked
Good structure. The book is laid out in a series of lessons which cover a specific topic related to blogging; setup, design, marketing, SEO, monetising. Each lesson was well thought out and had a clear goal.
Useful information. It’s clear that Lane and McNeer know their subject. I personally picked up several tips and generally the material is presented in an easy to understand format. Any blogger from a novice to expert would be able to follow the book and pick up some tips.
The narration. I felt Doug Hannah narrated the book excellently. He seemed interested in the material and took care to speak especially clearly when dictating website addresses.
What I didn’t like
I had one major issue with the book.
Too specific information. Let me explain. On many occasions the book tried to guide the blogger through the steps to achieve some purpose with a third party site, for example, Google Analytics. The information was of the style “click on the yellow button that is the third one down on the right hand side.” I appreciate that the authors wished to be helpful, but there is a serious risk that the information will be quickly out of date and no longer useful. That kind of detail could be useful in a web article, but not so in a hard copy or audiobook which by necessity has a longer shelf life.
All in all, despite the good narration, The Blogger’s Guide just didn’t work for me as an audiobook. With the concern I had about being out of date, I have to give it two and a half stars out of five.