Sunday, October 7, 2012

Why I don't write "bad reviews"!

So there was this person on my Goodreads list who kept appearing on my home page with all his incessant reviewing, until I figured out you could set it such that you get updates from the authors you're following. Looking at all his mean, rebellious, oh-so-sarcastic reviews always pissed me off, especially because they were almost always riddled with grammatical and spelling errors (anyways,the book was wierd: ugh!)

When I read a book and I like it, I write about it. If I don't like it, I hop on to the next read. That's usually how it works. If I get a complimentary copy, then what I write is a review and is considerably more sincere than just talking about what a book makes me think about. To tell you the truth, I think it is kind of obnoxious and loud to want to swear at a book (or worse, its author) and doesn't really suit my quiet-ish personality, so that may be one reason why I never write "bad" reviews. But, I doubt it. Here's why I don't, according to me:

# 1 - The oh-so-sarcastic reviews I mentioned, with things like "Only dumb people will like this book.", "The book made me want to puke." or the more irritating one, "It's for chicks." contain this absurd assumption that the reviewer is the definition of smart and that there is no such thing as personal preferences.

# 2 - There is no such thing for me, as a completely horrible book. Even the most boring books I have read had something about them that I appreciated. I am being honest and not unduly fair, when my negative reviews (the rare one or two star ones - by the way, I don't like giving these star ratings, but that will be the topic of another rant.) contain four lines of what I liked.

# 3 - The most important reason, I think, is because I just don't like to waste some fourteen minutes of my time, not to mention, my precious humour, describing something that I didn't even like in the first place: more so when I know that there is someone out there just waiting to pounce on me and disagree, someone I'll never be able to convince otherwise. Why go through all the trouble, when I can spend that very time doing something I actually like?


Nick Camarata said...

I agree. I do the same about my reviews. If I don't like a book, I won't waste my time writing a bad review about it. I just move on to something I can enjoy.

New follower via GFC

Abhinav said...

Same here

iRuju said...

I appreciate the thought you have put in choosing not to write a bad review! :-)

Alexis @ Reflections of a Bookaholic said...

I think bad reviews can be helpful. I know that just because I don't like a book, it doesn't mean that someone else might not like it for the same reasons that I dislike it. I also don' think bad reviews have to be sarcastic and mean.

Priya -Tabula Rasa said...

Maybe you're right, but you have to agree, most of them are mean, sarcastic and overly critical. I think critique can be much more tasteful! Bad reviews can be helpful if you make suggest improvements rather than judge the author. And I think it's quite encouraging to mention anything you liked about the book, even if it is as insignificant as a dialogue or a running gag...

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