Thursday, November 23, 2006

Fun with Google book search.

I read romance novels very, very occasionally. By that, I mean, "as rarely as possible." Occasionally I do end up with them anyway, usually because I think the premise sounds cool. The last one was a Sherrilyn Kenyon book with Greek mythology. It featured Biker!Cupid. How could I resist?

In the end, I wished that I had resisted. The book was terrible. The heroine was boring. The love interest was annoying. The phrase "taut nipple" was way overused.

So I looked it up on Google book search and got 450 results. Sherrilyn Kenyon isn't even original.

My favorite is this one, from Forbidden by Elizabeth Lowell:
“Aye,” Duncan groaned, brushing his mustache over one taut nipple. “And aye —he brushed again—”and aye, and aye one thousand times more!"
What is it with Scottish people and romance novels? Those rugged kitled men get all the action.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Veronica Mars

I am inclined to think that any bad review of anything related to Veronica Mars has to have been written by an imbecile. I don't understand how anyone could watch the show and not find it just as brilliant and amazing as I do. I mean, I get the reasoning -- not everyone likes the same stuff, we are all unique people with unique tastes, differences make the world go around, all that jazz -- but I just can't wrap my mind around the idea. It's like trying to imagine how far away the Andromeda galazy is. You can't even begin to picture the size.

I retain a strict (well, strict-ish) policy of only mocking reviews that are truly dumb, rather than reviews that I just don't agree with. I am kind of breaking my own rule with this review, for the first season.

So let's pretend that I'm not mocking the review, but appreciating it. I feel that it needs to be appreciated for having the most artistic use of parentheses ever. Some samples:
Imagine how disappointed I was to discover that as the title of my review states the majority is not always right (I wouldn't want to go into the political implications of such an argument especially in democracies but the concept is very well known and accepted).

(this reflected badly on the main and supporting characters since what is the fun in watching a mystery that one figures out half way through the episode).

. . . once a show fails to grip its audience (through unpredictable and yet reasonable twists and turns) it ends up being a waste of ones time.
Perhaps someone was looking over the reviewer's shoulder yelling, "DAMN IT, M. SALMAN! YOU DON'T HAVE ANYWHERE NEAR ENOUGH OF THOSE FUNNY LITTLE CURVED LINES!" I can't come up with a logical explanation for any such situation, but I'm sure one exists. Maybe our imaginary parentheses Nazi is an aesthetics fachist who believes that a review without parentheses is doomed to hopeless hideousness.

Does that remind anyone of those weird spider things in Perdido Street Station? Since when have the Weavers been writing Amazon reviews?

This review makes me die a little inside:
This show is slow, ignorant, and doesn't deserve to stay on the air. I urge people to stay away from this show and watch good quality shows such as The O.C., One Tree Hill, Law and Order, or some other show that is worth watching. The only words that describe this show is TOTAL CRAP.
If you need me I'll be crying in my crying corner. Yes, I have a special crying corner. It gets a lot of use.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Some tidbits of general awesomeness:

From OverheardInNewYork.com"
Guy: Hey, I'm lookin' for a book.
Lady behind the counter: Um, okay. Did you have any particular one in mind?
Guy, laughing: No. Hell no. I don't fuckin' read. I'm just lookin' for something I can take over to Central Park so I can get hit on by chicks who think I'm smart and shit.
Lady behind counter: Try Nietzsche.
I also have, as promised, an incredibly awesome Thomas moment. Of course, every Thomas moment is incredibly awesome. However, this one stands out.

From pg 323 of Jim Butcher's Death Masks:
Thomas put on an innocent expression. "Don't look at me. I'm a drunken. chemical-besotted playboy who does nothing but cavort, feed, and sleep. And even if I had the mind to take a bit of vengeance on the Red Court, I wouldn't have the backbone to actually stand up to anyone." He flashed me a radiant smile. "I'm totally harmless."
It's going to be a TV show on scifi and this excites me. The web page for the show is here. I'm a little worried because I can't find Thomas in the cast list, but he doesn't show up until the third book. Also, the picture of Harry makes him look really confused.

Here is a Neil Gaiman interview. Squeeeeee.
On Dry:
Please: 'brutally honest', 'twisted humor', 'witty anecdotes'? These heavy words so lightly thrown could not screw the potential consumer more royally. People, do not use these terms so loosely, and irresponsibly! All anecdotes are Not clever and witty. All references concerning a lifestyle other than yours are not `Brutally Honest'. Mention of a alcohol abuse and homosexuality is not `Twisted Humor' I felt like a used condom after finishing this work that, which was, as often, hyped based on previous successes.
Evan Riley,
Austin, TX USA
He would be from Texas.

Also, although Mr. Riley has observed that alcohol abuse is mentioned, he has failed to notice the incredibly noticeable fact that the entire book is about alcohol abuse. I could make more dumb Texan jokes here, but I won't. I don't want to get shot.

I love the cover of this book. It is so impossibly cool-looking.

Why did you read the book in the first place?

Every once in a while, you come across a review of a book that makes you wonder why the person read the book in the first place. People who think fantasy promotes witchcraft shouldn't read Harry Potter. People who think homosexuality is immoral shouldn't read Augusten Burroughs. People who hate Jenna Jameson shouldn't read her memoir.

On How To Make Love Like A Porn Star:
I have no love for this woman or her work.

Jenna Jameson has not only accepted the mass media accolades for yet another hollow idol, she has exploited it, helping to delude hundreds of young women into a world of pornography and prostitution.

As a porn performer Jenna has also set back race relations in an industry already a bastion of redneck, crakkka bigotry.

[Some examples of how racist Jenna Jameson is.]

Jenna Jameson cares only for Jenna Jameson and nobody else. She is a mercenary.
Another bull-dyked, bleached-blonde, faketitted, flatbacked white trash bimbo who is readily available for the redneck and college fratboy element to abuse themselves in front of the tv and computer screen.
Because Jenna's fans are going to be so dissuaded from buying the book by someone who refers to masturbation as "abuse."

I really don't like book reviews from people who haven't read the book. Jenna Jameson may or may not be racist -- from what I've heard, I suspect that she is -- but book reviews are supposed to review the book. At least read the first couple chapters before you go bitching on Amazon. Then you can complain about the racism and the tortured prose.

This one is special for the grammar:
When I first started reading it, I was thinking maybe this will give me an insight on how someone gets into Porn, What makes someone wake up and say today I'm going to belittle myself.She starts off talking about her childhood how she hang with bikers and how she was raped once by this man Preacher and then later on you learn she was gang raped. This book doesn't make you feel anything, it's worthless! The title may get U but don't waste your money! The first couple of chapers which aren't alot you'll start to get a little "interested" but U really come to find how boring this book is! VERY BORING!
I can sum this book up....
White girl gets rape, White girl uses her body to strip, White girl boyfriend cheats, white girl gets revenge and becomes porn star!...(Sad revenge)
Nothing tells U much about this book at all..(...)
I repeat! Don't waste Ur money it's pure garbage!
I don't walk away from this book with anything!
I just feel something really is wrong with this twisted girl who had low selfessm and had no smart bone in her body to improve her life other then a pole or by porn!
This book lack interest! Time U get to the middle of the book...U'll be so LOST! It's stupid!
I could care less about her Diary..or her sex life!
This book didn't get to base how U can be pure and end up so disturded! It's junk!
This book needs a new title...How to get High Selfessm!
(...)
Those (...)'s aren't mine, by the way. The reviewer put them in herself, although I can't imagine why.

I am most amusted by the repeated reference to selfessm. Once in a while your mouse slips and deletes odd things and you type a little oddly end up with weird stuff. She uses "selfessm" twice, which suggests that it's on purpose. Which suggests that she actually thinks that "self esteem" is spelled "selfessm." Which is really, really funny and really, really sad at the same time.

The weird capitalization is also worth a giggle or three.

The emphasis on how white Jameson is is also kind of funny. I bet that "Lisa" meant to say something about racism but never really got around to it.

This one wins for sheer Why-The-Fuck-Did-You-Pick-Up-This-Book-ness:
That is the only way I can describe the phenomenon of a porn skank actually putting sentences together. Yeah she did have help but believe me it didn't improve this book any. She totally tries to justify the fact that she is a porn star, as if that would make it any better. Just admit it, you are a two-bit skank who can't do any better. Admit it!!! You'll feel better. She is the green-eyed monster of envy when it comes to REAL actresses or models, you can see it in the way she tries to babble on that Cindy Crawford actually came on to her. What would a gorgeous woman like Ms. Crawford want with a plastic looking floozy like Jenna Jameson? Not a thing. But she tries to make us believe that as well as a lot of other BS in this book. Don't go there.
Floozy is a really awesome word.

PC much?

Someone's a bit over-sensitive.
After reading all of the other Dresden Files I had looked forward to this one. Up until the end I was not disapponted but then the comment by a character that Jews were responsible for Jesus's death really upset me. This statement although not anti-semetic in itself has been used as a justification for the last 2 millenia to kill and persecute. To put this remark in a 21st century novel is certainly quite provocative if not down right irresponsible. Literary licence aside this could have easily been avoided. I wonder why it wasn't?
"Statements that have been used as excuses for bad things are inherantly evil!!!111

If Harry Dresden were running around yelling that Jews are evil and that Jewish people smell funny, s/he'd have a case, but the reviewer even admits that the statement isn't actually anti-semetic. Leave Harry alone and go yell at your mum for telling her friend about what you said to your little sister. Some parents might beat their kids for that. Your mum is an irresponsible ho.

The book in question is Death Masks, by Jim Butcher. It features the best Thomas moment yet. I am such a Thomas fangirl. It's kind of sad. I'll post the quote when I find the book.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Yes, the name is different.

Yes, it is.

There are an awful lot of very general book blogs out there, and almost all of those bloggers are better at it than I am. And so I've decided to be a bit more specific. I've been doing nothing but reviewing reviews for the last couple weeks, and I like it. From now on, this blog will focus on hunting down stupid reviews.

Of course, you can still expect me to regularly plug my favorite authors and post cool links and such.

Coraline

On Coraline:
This book was assigned to my 8-year-old at school, and I decided to read it myself after he said he was afraid to look at it when he was alone.
Even as an adult, I was pretty creeped out by the demon-mother character, and it was completely inappropriate for a second-grader.
I think it borders on abusive to give this book to any child younger than 10 or 11.
I know the book is creepy. I'm in high school and I have a friend who couldn't get through it because it scared her so much. If I were in charge of such things, I probably wouldn't assign it as school reading because it is frightening.

But it's not inappropriate, nor is it abusive. Your kid can't cope with it, but that doesn't mean that all the other kids are terrified of it.

This one is mostly amusing for the odd spelling:
This book is prity cool it gets you interested .It is a funny book this is what it is about. It is adout a littol girl named corilin she lost her mom and dad and she whent to go find them and she got lost in another world. and then she meets a creepy girl that thinks she is her mom. so the girl acts like she is here mom and she tris to mack the girl like her. i didnt like the book but i think you will like it.
Okay, you're not the best speller. But misspelling the main characters name? Particularly when said name is the title of the book? And spelled exactly like it sound?

I'm not even going to get into how little this review seems to have understood the actual story.

Also, although I disagree with the reviewer's sentiment, I do think that this may be the most awesome review title ever:
If Garth Nix Smoked Crack, This Would Be the Result
If you haven't already read Coraline, you should. Unless you scare easily, in which case, don't. It's Neil Gaiman, and thus brillianly creepy.

There's a movie coming out. I hope it's good. The poster looks completely wrong, but apparently it's just conceptual art and the movie is going to be done in stop motion.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

When Racists Review

I stumbled across this appalling review of Veronica Mars on netflix:
Standard Zionest formula. Cutie pie Jewish Princess and Sweet Daddy solve crimes. Targeted at the high school demographic (the most programmable and impressionable age) the show promotes and pedestalizes Blacks, accepts the Hispanic gang presence as cool and outright denegrates the Irish race. Scattered, pointless writing worked around the major premise with snotty-valley-girl coolness to make it hip to teenagers. What a waste of air time!
Nazis shouldn't be allowed to review things.
Nothing quite revives my faith in humanity like a stupid review being rated as wildly unhelpful. I found this review on Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West:
I rate this book so low because of the vulgar topics reviewed in the book. Topics involving things that should never be written about. I do not recommend this book to anyone who uphold high morals of language and propriety.
Four out of fifty-eight people found the review helpful. Take that, frightening person.

Was a little less cheered by this when I realized that not everyone takes the helpfulness ratings on their amazon reviews to heart as much as I do.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Alice in Wonderland, Deluxe Edition

Reviews found on Lewis Carroll: The Complete, Fully Illustrated Works, Deluxe Edition:
I rate Alice in Wonderland a 3 star rating. The author is very creative in this novel; she uses the literary element personifications through out the whole book. She does a very good job with this by how she portrays the character in the book, (ex: the Queen as a snob)
This person actually thinks that Lewis Carroll is female. How is Lewis a girl's name? Also, how does one possibly go through life without ever running across the fact that Alice in Wonderland was written by a man?

Here's a review that I'm pretty certain was written by a second grader. The underlining is mine.
I reviewd this story as an interesting use of the authors imagination, also the way Lewis Carroll had a great ideas for characters for example : the Mad Hatter, the Weeping Turtle, the Diabolical Queen of Hearts , Cheshire the Cat, Tweedledum, Tweedle, and the Dutchess. All these characters were so interesting because I have never heard things like that berfore and thins like "Alice" drowning in her own puddle of tears.These things you don't see in a typical girl's dream basically all that's in a typical girls dream is flowers, playing with their dolls ,and girly stuff like that. This story also tells about how dreams can come true to you but not existing to no one else but you'r self . This story has affected me by looking inside me and others to see how we are in several ways in the dreams that we have . The writer is giving a message on how dreams can come true no matter what will happen. But other than that I liked this story it was very interesting.
You can tell it's a second grader because no one does sexism quite like small children.

Also, I like the quote marks around "Alice." The reviewer seems to be suspicious of her. "Alice" is not who you think she is!

I've saved the best for last, and it's stupidity best digested in chunks.
I think the book Alice in Wonderland is a very good book. While it can be confusing at times, it makes you wonder. For example, when they were talking to the turtle, it didn't make very much sense. Also, the trial over the pastries, it was very idiotic, and if that trial happened today it would get thrown out.
No, it wouldn't. The Queen's lawyers would tell the jury that the Mad Hatter kicks his dog and the Mad Hatter would have to pay Her Majesty $10,000 in damages.

Faith in the system is for naïve idiots and amazon reviewers.
The author's use of language was very unlike our language today. For example, when she said so many times the words, " shot up", it sounds English or something. The book has this tone a lot throughout it. Maybe the author has English back round.
There is absolutely no snide comment I could possibly make that could improve those four sentences.
The main character is Alice. At sometimes she can seem clueless, and go on rambling like while talking with the turtle. She even pointed it out her-self. A lot of her decisions during the book make no sense.
Neither does your decision to hyphenate "herself" but you don't hear me bitching about it on Amazon, do you?

The review also contains these gems:
But it was in very easy to understand language, accept for the times people were talking non-sense.

There was many times where she confused me sometimes.

One thing of the book I did not understand was the theme.

The cat that kept disappearing and appearing even asked her why did she need directions to somewhere, if she didn't know where she was going.
That may have been my favorite dumb review EVER.
A review of Harriet the Spy:
I LOVED reading Harriet the spy!!!! The prop. wuz im one of those people who get ideas from books.So I have 3 notebooks
I started this year. I took the first one 2 skool and my
teacher took it @ study hall. I HAD SORTA MEAN THINGS IN MY NOTEBOOK!!! and SHE READ THEM ALLL!!!!!!!!!!!! And wuz VERY
mad @ me. I`m gonna start a notebook nxt year or summer :)))
This is the kind of dumb kid the religious right is always worrying about. STOP GIVING JERRY FALLWELL AMMUNITION, YOU IRRITATING BRAT!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Stu-loving

In a review of Fool Moon:
I'm sensing a new trend of intentionally semi-competent heroes. This and Dead Witch Walking are my only indications, so I could be wrong.

Take Harry Dresden, Freelance Wizard. He screws up. A lot. Not necessarily terrible mistakes, but little slips. But people often die from these mistakes. Being fallible makes Harry more human, but it's asking a lot of me to look the other way as innocent victims are offered up on the sacrificial altar of our hero's character development. Halfway through this book I wanted someone to take over for Harry. Someone who could work toward a solution instead of stumbling his way through.
?????

Writers who don't let their heroes make mistakes bother me. If Harry Dresden were perfect, I would have stopped reading the books long ago. I like that he fucks up and I like that his mistakes cause serious problems. The lovely thing about fiction is that you can sacrifice as many innocent victims as you need too and no real people get hurt.

Also, it's difficult to believe that Harry, even the SuperSpeshul!Harry that this reader would prefer, could manage to save everyone. The book features a bunch of killer werewolves. Killer werewolves are not easy to deal with.

I've had to accept that that some people actually like Sues and Stus. They like reading about completely perfect characters. They enjoy reading flowery descriptions of flawless complexions and can happily accept ridiculously high IQ scores. These are the people who have made Eragon and books like it so obnoxiously popular.

Sigh.