I’ve been suffering from the probably well-known ailment amongst romance readers which I’ve decided to call Restless Reader Syndrome. It’s related to the much dreaded Slump, but it’s not exactly a slump in that the urge to read is gone, but instead, the reader afflicted can’t settle on a book. We jump around from book to book, knowing that it’s not the book’s fault; it’s just not grabbing our attention. I’ve started and went ‘meh’ to quite a number of books. I’ve gone up and done my books on all 3 platforms; Kindle, Kobo and IBook’s and none of them are calling my name loud enough for me to hear them. One did, Blue Eyed Devil by Lisa Kleypas and I answered its call and reread the Most Incredible Book, but then I got restless again. I started about 3 or 4 different books but none of them were the ‘right’ book.
Now this syndrome is very close to the “It’s not you, it’s me” syndrome when we know a book is pretty good, but it just doesn’t hit the spot for us.
I posted a review online at Amazon for a book I found absolutely dreadful and I only gave it 1 star the other day. Much to my surprise someone responded not very happy at all with my review of the book. Right away it put my back up and my reply was pretty much ‘I stand by my review, for me the book was awful and NO book will be loved by everyone.’ I explained in my review why I didn’t like and the issues I had with it. It wasn’t simply a “this book is crap and don’t read it” though I may have implied that; I really had a bad reaction to the book.
But the point is, I would never argue with someone on a review they posted. I have, when I’m feeling bitchy, sent a response something like ‘you are being unfair to the author when you give a book 1 star because it wasn’t in the best of shape when you got it’ or another time I sent a response to one of those “Christian” reviewers who absolutely trashed a book by an author I really like who now writes mostly inspirational books. Said book though wasn’t an inspirational and I explained to the reviewer that said book was written before she made the transition and should be judged accordingly. As the rabid complaint and low grade wasn’t because the book was poorly written but rather that it had *gasp of horror* S.E.X. in it, I said she was being unfair. And *wince* because I was in a particularly bitchy mood I may have accused her of sounding very judgmental and sanctimonious, traits that should NOT be held by Christians. And yes another thing I do when bitchy is to go down a list of ridiculously high 5 star reviews and if they only write one or two sentences about HOW WONDERFUL THIS BOOK IS, HOW THE AUTHOR MUST HURRY AND WRITE MORE or THIS BOOK MADE ME LAUGH AND CRY – you get the picture, I will mark the review as Not Helpful. If they give the book a glowing review with reason, as in at least a paragraph, then I won’t do that as even I may not agree, they have made an effort.
Which is why I was puzzled by the ‘message’ I got. I obviously made an effort to explain why I wrote what I wrote. Plus said writer called me Randy and while I post Amazon reviews under my initials and maiden name, neither is Randy. I’ve no idea where they came up with that name.
And along similar vein, authors, if you have rabid fans, encourage then NOT to engage with other readers who don’t hold the same appreciation. Sadly if that happens, often the author will be painted with the same brush and it may affect how the average reader views you. I know it’s unfair, but don’t let your fans or even yourself, interact with readers who don’t hold the same level of appreciation. Again, not every reader is going to love every book. Hard as it is for me to believe that not everyone loves say Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas as much as I do, I’m not going to argue with them and tell them why they should and say they are wrong. It just is what it is.
And following up with Amazon and its reviewers/ readers, I was on my break and decided to read an outline on the book I settled on and am now reading. There was a good review with a few comments. The first commenter was rather snotty and said they didn’t appreciate spoilers in the review and weren’t happy that the person who wrote the review let it slip that the hero and heroine fell in love.
Say what??? It’s a ROMANCE. By what stretch of the imagination is it a spoiler to say in a ROMANCE book that the HERO AND HEROINE FALL IN LOVE?
I’m afraid I have little patience with stupid statements, complaints and questions. Now that I’m getting older I’m trying to decide whether to be a real crotchety old lady or continue on with being nice. I’ve been nice my whole life so the thoughts of letting loose my crotch (and I don’t mean that in a salacious way) is very tempting. I expect I will be crotchety a few times and then do over the top apologies to everyone I meet for being mean.
I’ve been getting a bit more involved in checking out GoodReads. I signed up for the challenge and I can gleefully say I’ve completed it and I’m 18% over. Since I have a whack of books I haven’t even added yet, I’m really going to be doing well this year.
I must say though that many of the readers there are, well, the word exuberant comes to mind. A Very Dear Friend picked up an ARC of Cold Hearted Rake and I’m reading it now (and loving it but more to say when I finish reading it). I went to mark it as ‘currently reading’ and my goodness there are some enthusiastic readers there. First off all there gif’s gave me a headache. I know I’ve mentioned how much I hate them before – so please, if you care about my head, tone it down by about 95%.
And so much of the comments are ALL IN CAPTIAL LETTERS. ANOTHER THING THEY NEED TO STOP. PLEASE!!!! Goodness knows I can be a queen of drama – but many of those commenters take it to the extreme. Again I wish they would tone it down.
They also have a tendency to be overly dramatic, at least to my way of thinking. Again, I can be the drama queen with the best of them – the people I work with know this, but I try and keep it at a reasonable and mostly unannoyable level, but many of the posters there are exhausting.
Anyway, it’s Friday, it’s time for me to head home for the day so I’ll say for now….