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Unhappy author emails critical reviewer

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Thu May 12th, 2011, 12:33 pm

[quote=""LoveHistory""]Another day in the soap opera that is Amazon.[/quote]

All the days of our Amazon. Rarely a dull moment. ;) :)

Annis, I couldn't agree more.

ETA: An interesting addition to the comment. Scroll down to Michael Gallagher's comment here.
While I am typically level-headed, the personal attack on me in a public forum in the review comment by the author, combined with the immediate plethora of emails I received from his fan base as well as an email received directly from the author, was similar to a match (those other folks) being thrown on a can of gasoline (me). It appeared my email address had been sent out to hundreds as the avalanche of email responses I received within 20 minutes of posting the review were quite numerous and pretty foul. Since I can't say in a public forum what I am thinking, let's just say I was more than a little perturbed.

I then made a mistake by venting in a public forum, also. Needless to say, I am very impressed with the number of fans Mr. Finder has and their support of a story they probably didn't read before contacting me.
He says a lot more about this, which you can read on the Amazon thread.
Last edited by Misfit on Thu May 12th, 2011, 12:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Michy
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Post by Michy » Thu May 12th, 2011, 3:14 pm

[quote=""Margaret""]But then, just as authors need to realize people will react to their books publicly in a whole variety of ways, people who review books in a public forum should probably also be aware that authors will react in a variety of ways. People who are highly sensitive to criticism may not be best suited to either publishing or reviewing![/quote] Excellent point. The Internet has provided numerous -- and unprecedented -- public forums for self-expression to a literally global audience. If you choose to particpate in these, then be prepared for anything -- not just from authors, but from other reviewers/readers as well.

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LoveHistory
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Post by LoveHistory » Thu May 12th, 2011, 6:58 pm

Note to self: never, ever, ever contact anyone unless they contact me first. :D

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fljustice
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Post by fljustice » Thu May 12th, 2011, 8:46 pm

I had an author contact me about a 4-star review (for a NF education book he sent me for review), saying he was pleased with the review, but "disappointed" with the rating and gave me instructions on how I could change it to a 5-star review. :eek: I told him I was doing him a favor because all the other reviews were 5-stars and savvy readers would immediately discount them as friends and family...a 4-star would be considered more legit. He (apparently) agreed with my reasoning and left it at that. I've decided not to accept anymore books from that source.
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Michy
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Post by Michy » Thu May 12th, 2011, 9:33 pm

[quote=""fljustice""] gave me instructions on how I could change it to a 5-star review. :eek: [/quote] That's kind of funny, actually. Like he just couldn't conceive that you would intentionally give him anything less than 5 stars, therefore it must have been a mistake or lack of understanding on your part. What hubris. :p

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DianeL
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Post by DianeL » Thu May 12th, 2011, 9:35 pm

[quote=""fljustice""]I had an author contact me about a 4-star review (for a NF education book he sent me for review), saying he was pleased with the review, but "disappointed" with the rating and gave me instructions on how I could change it to a 5-star review. :eek: I told him I was doing him a favor because all the other reviews were 5-stars and savvy readers would immediately discount them as friends and family...a 4-star would be considered more legit. He (apparently) agreed with my reasoning and left it at that. I've decided not to accept anymore books from that source.[/quote]

Two words:

Ew.

Eep!

(Well ... two syllables, anyway ...)
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Margaret
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Post by Margaret » Fri May 13th, 2011, 6:11 am

Authors really do have to learn to just let it go when it comes to Amazon reviews, assuming that they're not offensive or abusive ones, of course.
Actually, on Amazon, it's probably wise even to let offensive or abusive reviews pass. If they're truly offensive or abusive, it says way more about the person who posted the "review" than it does about the book being "reviewed." Other Amazon reviewers will likely pile on, and will be a lot more credible than the author.
Browse over 5000 historical novel listings (probably well over 5000 by now, but I haven't re-counted lately) and over 700 reviews at www.HistoricalNovels.info

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Post by annis » Fri May 13th, 2011, 8:35 am

Yes, Amazon reviews can be Dodge City territory, guns out and blazing at the slightest excuse!

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Margaret
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Post by Margaret » Fri May 13th, 2011, 9:09 pm

It would be interesting to do a survey to see which categories of novels attract the most outrageous reviews. A wild guess: self-published novels someone with a short fuse paid full price for but which were not quite ready for prime time, and high-profile super-bestsellers for a popular audience. I've read some scathing pans of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code - and I'll bet Dan Brown isn't the least bit bothered by them.

In my roaming about Amazon, I have actually not encountered a lot of reviews that are seriously abusive; far more frequent are the kind one of the posters in the above-referenced Amazon thread characterized as "GRATE book!" When searching for solid descriptive information on an out-of-print book, I am often frustrated by the vagueness of the typical Amazon review. What sort of person is the main character? Where is the novel set? Was it written for adults or teens? What type of story is it - dark, heartwarming, bittersweet, humorous, tragic? I appreciate it so much when an Amazon reviewer offers this type of information on one of the more obscure historical novels, but the reviewers who do are definitely in the minority! (A lot of the best reviews are probably from people who post on this forum - it's a great group!)
Browse over 5000 historical novel listings (probably well over 5000 by now, but I haven't re-counted lately) and over 700 reviews at www.HistoricalNovels.info

annis
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Post by annis » Fri May 13th, 2011, 9:19 pm

Posted by Margaret
When searching for solid descriptive information on an out-of-print book, I am often frustrated by the vagueness of the typical Amazon review
Agreed! 'GRATE book" doesn't tend to be a very helpful summary :) I personally believe that online sellers of older books (Amazon or other) should at least provide the book's original cover blurb if nothing else. Still, I've ended up with some interesting (and sometimes unexpected) reads by buying some of these obscure books cheap at online auctions - it's a bit like a lucky dip! I will try to add some sort of summary of these on Amazon or do an HNI review if I think it will be useful to others.

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