Ever read a book review so bad that you wanted to obliterate it from existence, be it on Amazon, Booktube or Goodreads?
I just did. I’m still in shock.
Sometimes, a bad review can be funny. Like when you see someone bragging about having found this “obscure” literary masterpiece that you’ve probably never heard of
because you’re a filthy pleb, and it turns out to be The Shining or David Copperfield or something equally ridiculous and well known. You laugh, you move on.
What if the review enrages you? Like a prudish and thinly hidden anti-Semitic review of The Diary of Anne Frank? Do you say anything at that point, or do you shake your head, wish humanity wasn’t so horrible, then forget about it?
What if it’s a really ridiculously dumb 1 star review that’s dragging the poor author’s overall rating down, potentially putting off buyers who don’t look further than that?
Do you even read reviews? Some people think they’re useless anyway, but obviously, I disagree. I think negative reviews definitely have their time and place, but only when they’re well thought out and the reviewer has stated their problems clearly, not just like:
So romance. Much melodrama. Wow.
I hate, hate, hate this book. The hero and heroine are barfingly irritating and at no point do i sympathize with any of them. They both needed punched.
Well reasoned there, lads!
I tend to read one star reviews when I’m deciding on whether or not to read a book, especially if they’re by people I think are on the ball. I read them because then I know what my absolute worst reaction may be. Either that, or I’ll read them about a book that I love just to see what the other camp thinks. Sometimes, if I’m feeling a bit ambivalent about a book, but can’t decide why, the lower star reviews help me to decide what the problem might be- as long as they’re written properly and they’re well thought out, of course.
So… not this masterpiece of reviewing:
Reasons I personally won’t read this book….
I just read the ‘blurp’,,,
Yes…I read it all….
I’m thinking to myself…,”why in the hell would I even ‘consider’ reading such a book given what
I’m living with now? I already feel confined enough in a cast, (can’t go for a walk, or swim, or drive,
I certainly do not want to read about a book where a woman chooses to live
in a cell.
I’m sure it may even be a good book!
I don’t want to go there!
COME ON! Why review this book at all, if you’re only going to read the “blurp” and decide it deserves a one star review, which has wormed its way up to the review list so it’s one of the first a potential reader will see? Sure, you’re having a bad time, but that relates to how bad this book that you’ve not read is exactly how?
When it’s a review of a major book, something so big that a bad review won’t make a dent, I don’t mind so much. I just get annoyed when people do this to authors who haven’t yet made a name for themselves, for whom each review or rating could mean the difference between someone picking up their book or not. It’s just rude, it’s pointless and it gives user-driven reviewing a bad name. It’s nearly as bad as reviewers who get paid to review giving 5 stars to everything, even when their review was mostly negative, which I discussed a while ago.
Am I the only one who gets annoyed by these types of reviews and sees them as ridiculous wastes of time?