I work on a small team, comprised of my manager (project lead), me, a coworker, and a senior full-stack engineer who isn't really part of the project, but has been helping us build an internal frontend. I have written about 95% of the codebase, with the last 5% from my coworker, who splits his time elsewhere.
Technically, we are supposed to do code review. I think code review is a great concept and really want feedback. My manager heartily espouses the benefits of code review, and I've often overheard him tell other teams how important it is.
Somewhat ironically, however, my manager drags his feet on doing them. He takes the better part of the week to merge my PR (we're talking maybe 40-50 lines of code), and leaves no comments. More often than not, I have to remind him a pull request is still pending, and he'll just approve it literally right then and there so he's "not a blocker". Totally understandable as as a one-off under a time crunch, not so much when it's basically every time I make a PR.
I often make business/design decisions in my code, and I'm not perfect--feedback would be great, especially since on paper he controls the product from a technical perspective. I often end up asking the senior fullstack engineer guy to review instead, which he always does within hours. However, he isn't really part of the team, nor does he have any stake/interest in/insight into the larger product, so I feel bad about repeatedly asking him.
I really like my manager in most respects; my manager is very responsive otherwise and flexible about making time for other things. It's just like he has an aversion to reviewing code for some reason. Or so I thought. Recently, I learned my manager is actively involved in code review for another, new project/team he manages. He often asks me for feedback in one-on-ones on how he could do better, and I'd like to point out I don't feel like I'm able to solicit meaningful code reviews from him.
Would it be out-of-line to broach this in our next 1-on-1 with something like the below?
One thing I’d really appreciate getting—and honestly don’t feel like I’ve gotten—is critical feedback on my work. I don’t write perfect code, and there is sometimes business logic I might not be thinking of. Often when I assign you as a reviewer, however, I don’t get any feedback, and it seems like it gets approved right on the spot without any review when I bring up the fact that the pull request is still pending. So… I guess my question is, how do you want me to handle code reviews? Is there something I can be doing differently or to make it easier to review? I’m of course happy to ask "Chris" to review instead, but I feel a little awkward doing so repeatedly when he’s technically not intimately involved in this product.
(For what it's worth, not a receptivity-to-feedback thing--my manager has commented before how receptive I am to feedback. I've considered perhaps my manager is reluctant to review my code but will do so for his new team because they're more junior, whereas my programming ability well eclipses my manager's. Not saying this with any conceit, just reality. Maybe he drags his feet because he doesn't feel like he has anything to add? I'm not sure, but I still would like his thoughts on design nonetheless...)
edit: Just to add--collectively, there are about 5 people spread across 2 projects my manager leads, including me. So I'm not really competing against a lot of other people in terms of PRs. I'd definitely get the delay if there were a lot of people across my manager's two teams, though! I guess it's more of a problem for me because I don't get the sense it is driven by lack of time (e.g., he will comment on how free/quiet the past few days have been, yet during that time I'll have reminded him that my PR is still outstanding several times. "I'll take a look this afternoon" and doesn't).