Monday, May 13, 2013

The Best and The Worst…of Reviews

By Evelyn David

Don't tell me. I know. I shouldn't read my reviews. Actor Kevin Bacon has sworn that he never reads his, although don't you think that his agent probably does?

I know that several Stiletto Gang authors also have forsworn reading reviews.

But you're talking to a woman who happily reads spoilers for her favorite TV shows – and still enjoys them. So you think I'm not going to look to see who loves me – and, tragically, who doesn't?

So I was thrilled when readers begin posting glowing reviews of MURDER DOUBLES BACK. Lesa Holstine, librarian and reviewer extraordinaire, said "When authors can manage to juggle large casts, complicated stories, a fascinating dog, and traces of humor, they shouldn't wait years between books. Evelyn David's entertaining Murder Doubles Back will make readers regret four lost years."

Wow! That made my week, month – year.

But then, here's what another reader wrote, headlined, "Where's The Humor?" Actually the review was quite positive, saying, "The story line was good. The characters were still appealing." But she didn't think we brought the funny.

But, But…she said I didn't have a sense of humor? Me who has considered a job as a stand-up comic? Me, who is a barrel of laughs, except when reading reviews that are like a stiletto to the heart, so to speak.

You're questioning my humor? Question my writing ability, sure. But question whether I can deliver a joke? The horror.

Sigh. Don't tell me. I shouldn't read reviews.

Maybe I'll listen to a George Carlin riff on You Tube. Nobody ever accused him of not having a sense of humor.

Please share your worst review or job performance evaluation. Misery loves company.

Marian, the Northern Half of Evelyn David (the one without a sense of humor, the Southern half is quite the cut-up)


Click the link below to find out how to get 10 free ebooks
(including Murder Off the Books by Evelyn David)
Note: limited time offer

Sullivan Investigations Mystery
Murder Off the Books Kindle - Nook - Smashwords - Trade Paperback
Murder Takes the Cake Kindle - Nook - Smashwords - Trade Paperback 
Murder Doubles Back Kindle - Nook - Smashwords - Trade Paperback
Riley Come Home (short story)- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Moonlighting at the Mall (short story) - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords

Brianna Sullivan Mysteries - e-book series
I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
The Dog Days of Summer in Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
The Holiday Spirit(s) of Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Undying Love in Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
A Haunting in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Lottawatah Twister - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Missing in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Good Grief in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Summer Lightning in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords

The Ghosts of Lottawatah - trade paperback collection of the Brianna e-books
Book 1 - I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries (includes the first four Brianna e-books)
Book 2 - A Haunting in Lottawatah (includes the 5th, 6th, and 7th Brianna e-books)

Love Lessons - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords


  1. I confess, Evelyn, I am one of those writers who swears off reviews, good or bad. But I did enjoy your post, and now you've got me wondering if my agent reads my reviews?? Hmm...

  2. Marian, I read all my reviews by professional reviewers, but I've sworn off reading Amazon and Good Reads reviews because a few of them just trash the book for little reason--sometimes without even reading it. One reviewer once spent three long paragraphs destroying Every Last Secret before her final sentence made it clear she closed the book when she read the heroine's name because she hated it. First page, first line. After that, I thought I'd just stick with the pros, who sometimes criticize but at least have read the book they're going after.

    If your reviewer didn't even read the book, no wonder she decided you're not funny.

  3. Luckily I haven't received any scathing reviews for "Dead Like Me," though I'm sure they're coming. However when I was shopping the manuscript around to agents, the worst rejection letter I got was a simple one sentence response that pierced my heart. It read, "We are looking for exceptional writing, and I'm afraid yours is not."

    Ouch! I can laugh about it now because the book won a writing award and is published. That's the best kind of revenge!