A Bad Review

I’ve gotten a bad review on Amazon. A really really bad review. Here it is;

“This is NOT a finished book, but a collection of ideas that someone intended to use in the writing of a book. Initially, I thought it was written by a young person, or someone whose native language was much different from English, with the bizarre use of language, grammar and punctuation, but now I know that it’s not a book at all. There are odd half-finished scenes, action jumps from place to place incoherently, when I started reading I kept going back to see if somehow I had missed some reference or connection…pointlessly, there is no connection between sentence, paragraph, or chapter.
I guarantee you, if you make the mistake of purchasing this book, not only will you lose your money in a most egregious way, you will, as I have, lost your most precious asset, your time.
I almost didn’t write this review, as I feel that any writer who would be satisfied with this…whatever it is, must surely be severely compromised in some way, but I had read a review that said it was a great read and felt I should write a review that will help potential readers to make a better decision.”

Wow. Goodness. I’ve sat and been quite taken aback by the strength of feeling attached to this, which surprises me. I would have expected indifference, but the anger of this is really quite something.

So what can one say?  Writers of much more skill and fame than I have received scathing reviews, and in fact the more successful a writer is the more eagerness is there to show how awful their work is. So I suppose this is just to be expected. This is par for the course.

From Cellar Door Pictures.

4 thoughts on “A Bad Review

  1. Peter Dennehy

    Hi Claire,
    That’s not a critical review of any substance and to give it such credence is a travesty to the profession. This diatribe is typical of the tabloid sensationalist pseudo-journalists that feed on a certain section of society that ‘need’ negative sensationalist type press.

    If he was a ‘real’ critic he would have read the text, referred, quoted and elaborated on the actual text. Anything less doesn’t give hi the right to be read quoted or acknowledged.

    Therefore, dump the review and learn the lesson that when you are good enough to be published, as well as having intelligent, worthy people read and critique your best endeavours, you also expose yourself to the odd moron, and self-serving cretin.

    Chin up Claire

    Reply
  2. Andrew Carlin

    I can’t add to Peter’s sage advice, but only suggest you stop counting reviews. Amazon’s figures don’t (can’t) tell you just how many readers have enjoyed your book, learned much from it, have recommended it to others, have found it truly inspirational, left it on a park bench for somebody else to discover …
    Counting reviews — good, bad, or indifferent — skews your relationship with your readers.

    Reply
  3. Susan

    I read the draft, as you know, and though I would have made suggestions for improvement as a beta reader, and felt that editing was needed in the draft, I never got the sense of a disconnected narrative. The storyline was pretty strong, I read it past my stop on the DART. I say take what might be useful from the criticism, and discard the big portion that’s just personal anger on the guy’s part.

    I guarantee you, if you make the mistake of purchasing this book, not only will you lose your money in a most egregious way, you will, as I have, lost your most precious asset, your time.

    I think this guy needs to take a chill pill. The fact that he needs to use the word “egregious” in a review tells me he’s a tosser with something to prove.

    Oh well. You can’t win ’em all.

    Reply
  4. claire Post author

    Thanks to everyone for the replies, both online and in RL. My favorite suggestion was that I had clearly made someone jealous, which (shame on me) made me feel much better.

    Reply

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