anghara (anghara) wrote,

One Star Reviews

John Scalzi and others have done this in the last couple of days - the challenge is, take your one-star Amazons and toss them out there for public purview.

I've only ever had four one-star reviews, but

For "The Secrets of Jin Shei",

1.0 out of 5 stars Awful, just awful, September 3, 2007

Trite, corny, unbelievable characters and storylines. Yuck. This terrible book was recomended to me in a bookstore as I was purchasing historical fiction. The "alternate China" is just a ruse to hide poor scholarship and writing. Truly the worst book I've read in the last couple of years.

(unh... quite possibly understandable if she was looking for HISTORICAL China. But ye gods and little fishes, I have spent SO much time and energy telling people that it is not...)

1.0 out of 5 stars Jumping the Shark, August 17, 2005

This book never finds its plot, and like a sitcom passed its prime, jumps the shark repeatedly in an effort to distract the reader from this potboiler drivel and at the same inject forward motion into the book. This might be one of the worst books I have ever read. Which is really too bad, because the premise- women with their own language and bond- is very promising.

(so, I had a "worst book I've ever read" from each coast. At least I am egalitarian in my badness, as it were.)

(and just for the record... the lowest star rating for this book at Amazon UK is four stars. Go figure.)

Moving right along, concerning "The Hidden Queen"/"Changer of Days":

1.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't finish it., January 12, 2006

This review is from: The Hidden Queen (Mass Market Paperback)
Oh my word. I have only ever not been able to finish a book twice in my life -- and this was number 2. The first few chapters were ok, but when things really started cooking plot-wise, the writing style became, well, high-schoolish. I wanted to like it, so I plowed ahead. But, half-way through it, I gave up.

The writing style is amateurish, and clunky. Characters act in a melodramatically, with no realism. There are patches of good writing, but these patches are quickly followed by a clunker or two.

I would hope that the sequel to this book improved, but since I can't finish the first, I won't be trying the second.

(..."WITH NO REALISM"...? This is a self-avowed high epic never mind, then.)

1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, August 13, 2006

This review is from: The Hidden Queen (Mass Market Paperback)
After reading the blurb and seeing this called and intelligent and sensitive book, I was really looking forward to reading it. I liked the plot and the setting, but the execution was simply horrible. Point of view shifts happened from paragraph to paragraph. The main character was lifeless and dull. There were long passages detailing emotions (sensitive?) but then the plot would be summed up in two or three sentences. It was telling instead of showing at its worst.


I got a 3-star review for Worldweavers 1, but that was from an 11-year-old (who STILL managed to find something to like, though). But anyway, there's my one-star career, for what it's worth.

I am told that if you don't have any negative reviews then not enough people are reading your book. The thing is, *you've already done your job* by causing a reaction in the reader. GOod or bad, you've done it. It's the "meh" reviews that are REALLY awful; the ones with real passion speak to the fact that something in the book, whether they wanted it to or not, reached out and spoke to them. Which part of them it spoke to is something that is utterly beyond the writer's control - our job is just to do the speaking. Someone out there is listening.

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