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The Deadly Sin Of Not Giving A Book A Five Star Rating

June 7, 2012 Leave a comment

There are seven commonly recognized deadly sins.  They include wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony.  But there is also an eighth deadly sin so cardinal that is often over looked.  That sin is daring to say that a book is not “5 star” quality.

Yep, it is true.  Honesty is not looked upon kindly in the world of book reviews.  In that world, glowing, five star praise painting every novel written as the next best thing since Lewis Carroll, J.R.R. Tolkein or C.S. Lewis put pen to paper is the order of the day.  If you give a hedged four-star review while heaping praise, you can usually avoid most ofthe inevitable aftermath.  But, dare to give a book three-stars or less and you better be ready for scorn to be heaped upon you and the personal attacks to ensue.

When I said that Ian Irvine’s latest fantasy novel Vengeance, The Tainted Realm Vol 1 was only worth three-stars saying it read “like I was in the middle of a Tuesday night AD&D session” and it was not for anyone with “discriminating tastes in epic fantasy” it was on.  I received angry emails calling me a “worthless piece of s**t” and accusing me of “being jealous that I could never write such a wonderfully contrived novel as Mr. Irvine does time and time again.”  Well, excuse me for having an opinion.  Excuse me for thinking the book was mediocre.

Even when I recently posted my review of Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games, which I gave four out of five stars, I was not immune from attacks.  While I recommended the book, I also said that some things disappointed me such as the “simplistic prose”, its predictability and the fact that the basic premise was not very original even if the story details themselves were.  That caused fans of the book to unleash upon me because I did not think it was worthy of five star praise like they did.  Again, sorry for having an opinion that you did not like I suppose.  Please note that I did give it four stars.  Geesh!

It is an odd thing to experience, especially as an aspiring writer seeking publication.  One person upset with my review of The Hunger Games whined at me in a long, meandering email, “How would you like it if someone called something you wrote ‘simplistic and predictable’ and did not give it five stars?”  Well, honestly, as long as they are being honest and not vindictive or just a generally ignorant ass?  Then I do not care.  Opinions are, as they say, like butt holes.  Everyone has them.

I’m not one to toss around five-star ratings for anything, least of all books.  I’ve only ever thought that three books I have ever read deserved such an honor: Bram Stokers’s Dracula, C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass.  Sorry.  That’s my opinion.  Others have come close, but none has quite hit those heights.

I’m honest.  If you do not like it, don’t visit my site any more.  It is still a free country.

Today’s Deep Thought

October 23, 2011 Leave a comment

“Outlines, like rules, were made to be broken. No plan, or plot outline, survives first contact with the enemy (i.e. myself). And when all else fails, just write.” – Mathias Cavanaugh

See, this is why I picked Mathias Cavanaugh

July 15, 2011 Leave a comment

Why did I pick Mathias Cavanaugh for my pen name? Well, this is why.

This site has not even been up for a whole day and it is already #1 in Google for the name out of nearly 1.6 million results (without using quotes). But I figured it would be that easy. Now I just need people searching for me.

Welcome to MathiasCavanaugh.com

July 14, 2011 Leave a comment

Thanks for stopping by. In the coming days, weeks, months and hopefully years, I will be posting here to discuss my progress in trying to get my fantasy and science fiction works published.

I am an established author, although all my previous work is in other fields of writing and is under other names.

Yes, it is true. “Mathias Cavanaugh” is not my real name. Listen, if you had a name as common and boring as mine you would use a pen name too.

To learn more about me and this site, please visit my about page and do not forget to check back often to see what is going on with my pursuit of being a published author in the genres of fantasy and science fiction.