Oct 05 2012

I Do Keep A “Liars List”

Posted by Mathias in Book Reviews, General Things

One thing I started keeping a few years ago was what I deemed as the “Liars List”. This list is composed of people who leave blatantly false reviews for books on sites like Amazon.com and Goodreads.

Mostly the “Liars List” contains people who rate incredibly awful books as “great”, “awesome”, or some other unwarranted praise. A few are those who trash books that are actually good. But the majority of them are people who, for whatever reason, give bad books unwarranted praise. Presumably this praise is to try and get people to believe the book actually has some redeeming qualities.

I started this list because I simply grew tired of picking up and reading books based on glowing praise, only to learn that the book was, in fact, absolutely horrid. Often times these are Indy, self-published books. Some of them though are traditionally published ones.

While I recognize that tastes vary, blatantly false reviews of blatantly bad books gets you an automatic trip to the list. Being on the list means that I never take anything you have to say seriously ever again. But to account for the fact that tastes do vary, I have strict criteria about how someone gets on the list.

For example, calling a book with multiple spelling and grammatical errors per page “well written” gets you on the list. So does claiming that a book with literally no action is in fact “action packed” or a “thrill ride”. I also tend to put anyone saying that a book was the “best story you’ve ever read” to the list as well.

Basically, the statement you make has to be easily provable as false based on real evidence.

This list of mine is quite long. I notice that those on it pop up regularly. They greatly influence my opinion about whether or not, usually not, to buy a book. I just don’t like liars. I don’t care why they are lying. I don’t care if they were paid to give a good review. I don’t care if the author is their best friend. I don’t care if they have a grudge to settle with the author (in the case of blatantly bad reviews of good books). I just don’t like them.

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