A reviewer evaluates work depending on the given topic e.g. restaurants, movies, music etc. A reviewer needs to understand that to review and to critic is not the same thing because most reviews appear in media e.g. magazines, radio etc. It’s important to get information about what you are going to review beforehand because you can’t give an opinion on something if you don’t even know what it’s about.
To become a good or bad reviewer you need to avoid certain things, e.g. first person writing; phrases such as ‘wonderful’ or ‘terrible’ because these words over used in reviews. One should try not giving their immediate opinion on something and give something a second or third view in order to write an honest and accurate comment. It’s important not to make your review personal. Lastly, don’t forget to have some sort of structure in your piece. It’s important to structure your review correctly.
I’ll be giving an opinion on three pieces by Brent Meersman, a Mail & Guardian writer of the national weekly since 2003. He has written several novels since his first job as a press photographer in Grahamastown, 1989. His first novel was Primary Coloured, followed by Reports before Daybreak, lastly Five Lives at Noon.
The first article that intrigued me was “The chef’s table at Masala Dosa” Link: http://oncebitten.co.za/?p=1182 . The food looked interesting judging from the images within the article but once I read what each meal included I was not familiar with most of the meals. If one is looking to experiment with Southern Indian and Cape Malay Foods, Masala Dosa would be a great restaurant to visit. “Looking at 150 restaurants reviewed” by Brent Meersman is a must read if you want to know more about other restaurants around the world. Link: http://oncebitten.co.za/?p=1039
Moving towards my next article, “Why do so many African writers leave?” Which is an important question to all journalists; my first assumption would be money. Living conditions in most African countries is poor. Writers don’t get paid enough for the important job that they do. This is why most writers work and live overseas, for a better lifestyle. The interview by Meersman was informing in terms of insight as to why most African writers leave. Nimrod Djangrang Bena’s responses will open ones perception about writers and their departures. If you would like to read more on the interview; Link: http://thisisafrica.me/lifestyle/many-african-writers-leave/