I promise that after I write this, I am going to let it go! 🙂
Just to reiterate, Amazon decided that I wrote a biased review for a book I recently read! (House Of The Hanging Jade, by Amy M. Reade). Well, my friends, you are probably thinking that since I know Amy, I probably did write a biased review! You would be right!!! After all, what does bias mean? According to webster:
- a tendency to believe that some people, ideas, etc., are better than others that usually results in treating some people unfairly
a strong interest in something or ability to do something
Although I don’t believe that I would treat anyone unfairly, I will not give a 5-star rating to an author who doesn’t deserve it. So now you are probably thinking; Well geez Sharon, every review we see you post on your blog is a 5-star rating. My answer to that is yes, they are because these are the books/authors that I promote. After all, why would I promote a 2 or 3-star book/author? And believe me, when I give a low rating I dwell on it for a long time. I hate doing it, but sometimes it just needs to be said, and hopefully I do it with grace! And I review 99% of the books I read. It is a rare occasion when the book is so bad, I can’t finish it.
I contacted Amazon to ask them why they removed my review. Although they eluded to the fact that it was biased, the reason they stated was that I did not follow their guidelines. Apparently I am not allowed to promote an author. Hello!! When you review a product, that is exactly what you are doing. Promoting a Product!!! In this case a book and an author! So I wrote to them a second time to explain my review. This time, they answered with the same canned letter saying that I didn’t follow their guidelines. And this time, they told me that they would not answer any more emails on this subject. How Rude! I was tempted to write them once more just to tell them off and it would not have needed a reply. However, I was raised not to be rude, and two wrongs don’t make a right!
One of the things I like to do when I write a review is to discuss why I liked the book from a personal perspective. Why do people read anyway? I personally like to escape reality and throw myself into the world of the protagonist. And sometimes I actually want the bad guy to get away, shhh… don’t tell anybody. That’s why I read fiction. If I want to read real life stuff, which I sometimes do, then I read non-fiction.
Unfortunately, Amazon doesn’t like personal reviews. In my opinion, that is a loss for all the readers. I would like to read more reviews with a personal take and less with a synopsis. Don’t give away the story.
So now I find myself hesitant when writing a review and going back to Amazon for three or four days to see if my review is still there. I have written three reviews since this happened and all three are still there. However, I withheld some of my comments in the review, which was hard for me to do, and I think unfair to the prospective readers.
I now write all of my 5-star reviews on my blog first. That way at least the author gets to see how I really feel from a personal point of view. I then strip the personal stuff out and send it off to Amazon. HaHa Amazon, where there is a will, there is a way. And by the way, it is my understanding that an author gets the same credit whether they get a good review or a bad one. If I am wrong about that, please correct me.
At any rate, my rant is over and as I said at the start, I am going to move on!
Have a wonderful week and weekend everyone!
And As Always, Live, Love, Laugh and by all means READ!