Before I get into the bones of this blog post, let me make it perfectly clear that I understand that criticism comes with the territory of being a writer. Bad reviews are bound to be delivered, and for the most part, I receive them well. I hold nothing against anyone who doesn’t like something I write. This post isn’t a *criticism of the
horrible woman who called Savage Reckoning “garbage” on Amazon. (I feel compelled to point out that the use of “ horrible” was a total joke. I shouldn’t have crossed it out… That was a joke, too.) She is entitled to her opinion. I’ve been writing and publishing since 2005. I’ve gotten good reviews, bad reviews, and puzzling reviews, like the time someone simply posted “Got a free copy. Didn’t have time to read it. It looks like something I would have enjoyed” and then gave it a one-star rating. It was as if the reader was punishing me because she didn’t have time to read my book. What makes it even more puzzling is the fact that she wasn’t on a deadline. Not sure why she felt like she ran out of time.
The reason I titled this post “Mothers Hate Me” is because the two worst reviews I’ve received in 11 years both came from readers who identified themselves as mothers. In 2008, a mother of teen boys posted the following about The Pure.
Terrible………My teen boys love to read so I am always looking for a good series. I typed in teen fiction and this series popped so I bought all of them. After they were almost done with the series, I asked them what it was about. By the time their description was over I felt like I wanted to throw up. What had I subjected them to? I couldn’t believe the gore details they described. Sure that I had not subjected my Sons to this type of disgusting reading, I had them read aloud. I made them stop and took the books away. I cannot believe that these were in the teen section. Gross, Gore, Evil, Blood, Guts……….I’m so full of regret that I had ever bought these. The series should not be listed anywhere near teens. In fact, it should be labelled with a parental advisory. I think I’ll burn the books. I will use much more discretion with my selections from now on!
I filled this woman with regret because of my evilness. It doesn’t get much cooler than that. And, she wants to burn my books. I could not be more honored.
The latest mother who hates me didn’t think I was evil. My lack of talent and attack on hillbillies filled her with regret.
This was astoundingly poor quality. Try to imagine a Quentin Tarantino movie, but without any random attractive women or cutesy dialogue.
Just kidding. That’s actually a review of one of my favorite books, No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy. It goes without saying that I strongly disagree, and I post it here for a reason. Opinions are not right or wrong. As an artist, you can’t take them personally. True, some reviews seem personal, but when people are moved to review a book or movie or any piece of art, they are going to express themselves with passion.That passion, when it is cast in a negative review, can come off as personal.
Here is what Mommy of Many on Amazon said about Savage Reckoning:
I received a digital copy of this book free via Netgalley.
This has to be one of the worst books I’ve read in a while. The writing is bad. The characters are bad. The story could have been ok but the writing and the characters dragged it down. It’s listed as a thriller but the only thing thrilling was being finished and trying to forget that I’d wasted hours of my life on this garbage. Far from being an edge-of-your-seat thriller, there was some mystery but the book was just so bad that I didn’t even care what was behind the disappearances.
If you’re the kind of person who believes that everyone in the south are hillbillies and you like to make fun of that, then you might find this book enjoyable. Otherwise, save yourself a few hours and skip it.
I tried to include a couple of quotes to demonstrate just how ludicrous this book is but by the time I filtered out all the words that Amazon was blocking, the quotes really lost their impact. Just download the sample and keep in mind, it only gets worse.
OUCH! The nicest thing she said is the “story could have been okay.” She is from Georgia, so I completely understand her lack of reading comprehension. ZING! Just kidding. Honestly, she’s not wrong. I do make fun of Southerners. I am a Southerner. It’s kind of what I do. We are a goofy people. I find our faults endlessly entertaining. But my protagonist is also Southern, and she’s smart as hell.
Here’s the point if you’re an author reading this. Embrace your bad reviews. They are badges of courage. Yes, Mommy of Many came off as kind of a dick, but to be fair, I wasted hours of her life. Who can blame her? I’d be a little pissy, too. Besides, Savage Reckoning is extremely profane, disturbingly violent, and extremely twisted. It would totally destroy my backwoods cred if someone who calls herself Mommy endorsed it. Frankly, my own mother probably would have hated it.
* – Okay, so maybe I was a little critical of Mommy of Many, but I seriously don’t hold her review against her. I was just having a little fun. It’s her opinion, and she’s entitled to it. Have a good life, Mommy of Many. Whatever you do, do not read book two. It features a “hickbilly’ (not to be confused with hillbilly) fucking a horse. I’m assuming that’s not your cup of tea.