I have a policy about judging books based on reviews: a well written positive review is a good sign, and a badly written negative review is also a good sign. To put it another way, if an idiot hates a book, I’ll probably like it.
That came back to mind yesterday. I’m reading Isaac Asimov’s science fiction classic Foundation right now, and I wanted to get some other perspectives on it, so I looked it up on Amazon.
Pretty sure I’ll love it. Check out some of the Einsteins who gave it one star.
“A sci-fi book on people who want to create an encyclopedia?” That sounds…awesome!
“like reading dozens of books each with its own characters and new plot” Again…awesome.
This was enlightening.
Dwight: It is your birthday.
I love reviews that downgrade a book because their copy fell apart.
Today a student told me that he’d ordered a copy of The Grapes of Wrath to read for my class, but the wrong book had been delivered. Turns out that some yahoo published a book with the same name as the Steinbeck classic. Maybe he thought he could get some sales through accidental purchases by students looking for school supplies.
There are clues that this is not the book you’re looking for. For example, it was published just a few months ago. Notice that people get the wrong book so often that Amazon suggests bundling this with another Steinbeck classic, Of Mice and Men.
But the reviews are priceless! Angry people feeling ripped off, confused people searching for meaning, and at least one reviewer who posted five-star praise about Steinbeck, for some reason.