Friday, January 13, 2006

The Moon, She Waxes...

...and the chicas, they brawl.

Over stooopid shit, like "do Amazon reader reviews matter?"

And "should romance readers review romances?"

(Say that five times fast with a mouthful of Sucrets Cherry Throat Lozenges. Without drooling. Can't be done.)

And "does MaryJanice Davidson suck?"

My humble (yeah, right) opinion, if anyone cares:

Amazon reader reviews matter to the extent that they are part of "word of mouth." A large part? Beats me. I understand that Amazon sales account for only a small percentage of overall book sales, but I also know that folks read Amazon reviews before going to bricks-and-mortar stores to make purchases. So.

I believe the author in question was unwise to request that the negative review be taken down from her book's Amazon page. Also, I think she was unwise to publicly plead with friends and acquaintances to "bump" the review with glowing praise for the book. Do I think this makes her SPAWN OF SATAN?? Of course not. Get a friggin' grip, people. This is a first-time-in-print author who overreacted to a negative review. She needs to toughen up. The rest of us need to lighten up.

Romance readers SHOULD review romances, without a doubt. The reviews themselves will be of varying value, just as the readers themselves are of varying tastes. You learn to pick and choose amongst the wheat and chaff of reader reviews, just as with anything else.

As to the original review (for Kate Douglas's WOLF TALES) that initiated this conflagration, I have issues with it not because it isn't an honest opinion of the work in question, but because it goes beyond criticizing the book and suggests that the reviewer is disgusted by anyone who DOES or MIGHT like the book. That, to me, crosses the line from offering fair-minded criticism to just being unpleasant and seeking to damage. (I offer this as my opinion only. I assume the author of the review will respect that, as she's been so staunch in defending HER right to publish HER opinion.)

On the subject of MJD, I must recuse myself. I've met her and found her utterly charming and hilariously self-deprecating. Even in disagreeing with her, I cannot call her motives into question. I can only assume those who are reading nastiness into her snark are missing her humor, which is sad. For them. See above, re: lighten up.

The January full moon, which comes upon us at 4:48 tomorrow morning, is known as the Wolf Moon. Get that Alpha Bitchery out of your systems now, chicas.


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