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Saturday, January 28, 2012

How to handle a poor review...and be happy!

Well, I just received  a review for my novel, "Scammer" on Amazon and while it was a One Star review and could have made me feel down in the dumps; I changed it up and put a positive spin on it.
Here's a copy of the review: (and my comments at the end)

1.0 out of 5 stars 
No redeming CharatersJanuary 26, 2012
This review is from: Scammer (Kindle Edition)
I really do not know what to think about this book. Normally an author creates a character that people can identity with and relate to. However, in this book I 
couldn't identify with any character in the book and I found them to have no redeeming qualities. After the first few pages I found myself 
wondering if the author's intention was to create an extremely unlikeable character. Jeff, the lead character, not only created a Ponzi scheme but also took money from from Arab terrorist groups, "Right Wing Militia" groups, the mob, and other enemies of the United States. He creates a lifestyle by stealing from the ruthless characters of the world and uses middle class investors to keep his company going. 
Jeff had several unlikeable friends, one being Sal. Sal talks about women has if they are sexual objects and makes sure to use them as such. He's crude when describing the way he would use the women, which once again made me question the author's intentions for creating a book with so many unlikable and unsavory characters. 
Jeff is a huge dirt bag and I kept hoping the more I read I would find some things that would allow me to connect with the author's lead character. Instead I only hoped Jeff would die at the end of the book in a very slow and painful way. Everything Jeff did was for only himself and he really never thought of the effects his decision had on others and loved 

Throughout the book we meet Jeff's right hand man Mark, this character was a little bit of a surprise. He was not only Jeff's voice of reality 
when things were going crazy but he would appear and disappear constantly.

The author threw everything in this book that he could think of and at one point I though he might actually have someone throw the kitchen sink. The book had affairs, 
Government conspiracies, dealings with the mob, killing someone he loved to save himself, torture, rape, murder, bombs and terrorists sleeper cells. 
unlikeable characters I have ever read.

A Ponzi scheme is an investment fraud that involves the paI was so 
happy to finish this book because I couldn't find any redeeming literary qualities. I am trying really hard to be nice but the author wrote the most yment of purported returns to existing investors from funds contributed by new investors. Ponzi scheme organizers often solicit new investors by promising to invest funds in opportunities claimed to generate high returns with little or no risk. In many Ponzi schemes, the fraudsters focus on attracting new money to make promised payments to earlier-stage investors and to use for personal expenses, instead of engaging in any legitimate investment activity. Taken from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

My thoughts---Well first off, I thanked this person for reading and told him that I was sorry it wasn't his cup of tea; in my eyes, not everyone will like what they read. The title of his review was mispelled and there were numerous other typos littered about; not a big deal but still visible. He said how my book lacked any moral characters which is entirely true; this is a book about a bad man and the other bad people associated with him. He went on to state how other players are just as bad; hey this isn't a Disney book of month club read so sorry, this is about bad people doing really bad things. He said how he couldnt like my main character Jeff. In my eyes, who could like him? He is bad and this is his story. In the movie Scarface, Tony Montana is a bad man and people seemed to like him to some degree; so that's my rebuke to that. 

"I was so 
happy to finish this book because I couldn't find any redeeming literary qualities. I am trying really hard to be nice but the author wrote the most unlikeable characters I have ever read."

The Positive spin on that is that he hated the book, but at least he finished it. I've read novels that were good and never finished because they were boring or the writing style put me to sleep, but if what he said was true; at least he finished it. It reminds me of when watching Howard Sterns movie "Private Parts" when people were saying how the listeners that hated him listened to him because they wanted to hear what he was going to say next. All I'm trying to convey here is that even though someone may not find your work favorable; at least you got them to read it from cover to cover and you sparked something that made them want to let someone know about it. There's democrats and republicans; why do we pick sides. Coke or Diet coke? Rib steak or sirloin? So many choices and why we choose what we do. I've seen reviews on some of my favorite authors books and some people will give 5 stars and other 4, 3, 2, and 1 even though I thought the book was excellent. 
What are your thoughts? I would love to hear from anyone on this topic. Have a great weekend.


  1. IT can't be that bad of a book because the reviewer read it to the end,lol! Not only that, but he read it well enough to give it a thorough review! Now there will people like me who will buy it just to see what the heck he was whinging about! Keep writing and keep finding the positive in those silly reviews Mixed reviews lend credibility to you as an author. James Patterson, Stephen King - everyone who is anyone gets mixed reviews. You are in outstanding company!

  2. @connie---that's what i told myself connie. glad he read it through and i value his opinion; makes me want to work even harder to make my next book that much better. hey, you cant make everyone happy; that's why the dictionary has a word called; opinion. Thanks for the patterson and king reference; glad to be among there's and yours fraternity of writers. thank you!

  3. I cannot find info on Goodreads about this book. Thanks, Lisa lisapeters at yahoo dot com Heidi is one of my reviewers and I have to say that you are a very positive person...good for you.

  4. @lisa---yeah i cant find it on goodreads either? sorry in my post i refered to heidi as a he..it was reviewed by h. zimmer (just assumed it was a male; my mistake) I take the reviews good and bad and appreciate that she left one and read the story.this is a part of a trilogy and it starts off real bad, gets worse and then may or may not have a happy ending. life isnt always peachy. I thanked heidi for reading in my comments on amazon and hope maybe she'll like the sequel (had one nice person this time lol)
    thank you lisa