Thursday, December 17, 2009

Check for lint

Andrew sent me this op-ed re Kirkus and consumer reviewing whose sentiments I much appreciate, especially this gem: "Too often, the pretense of sharing advice devolves into oversharing the contours of one's navel."

Meghan Daum is here talking primarily about consumer boards like Yelp and Amazon reviews, and I noticed yesterday while looking something up on Yelp that what caught my attention were reviews and ratings that confirmed my opinions about stores and restaurants I had already patronized. I don't read children's book blogs the same way--the bloggers feel like peers; the Yelpers more like neighbors. I'm still working on what that difference means.

4 comments:

Monica Edinger said...

"...he not only reviews diffusely and emphatically (showing no fear of the Caps Lock key)..." or, in the case of some of my 6th grade Book Bloggers, no fear of exclamation points. (I will refrain from using one or a smilie, for that matter.)

Seriously, thanks for this link.

melanie hope greenberg said...

"But unlike the bedlam of the customer opinions that can pile up on those pages like graffiti on a bathroom wall, Kirkus' reviews were real".

I've been tuning out the TMI talkers on FB, they are not so interesting. Kind of like the boy who cried wolf. When/if their news is substantial I might miss it due to their over projecting some phony persona that has become tedious.

Kirkus was kind to me. I will miss them.

nw said...

What nobody seems to be mentioning is how poorly written, ill-informed, and, yes, asinine many of the "professional" reviews can be--not just in Kirkus, but also in SLJ and Booklist; and not just the negative ones, but the positive ones, too. I've received at least one starred review that almost made me cry. It seemed to have been written by a near-illiterate who had never encountered the genre before.

Anonymous said...

Ha, nw, I know your pain! I put in a little linguistic joke that I didn't really expect the sixth graders to get. The New York Times reviewer didn't get it. At least one sixth grader did.

Awkward.