To pervert a well-known phrase, ‘All that is required for bad books to prevail is that good critics say nothing’, and yet, increasingly, that is exactly what is happening in those realms which heft most influence. It may not be happening in the blogosphere, but we’ll come to that soon enough.
I recently cut into a twitter conversation, which went something like this:
Spkr 1. Modern moral dilemma: given much hyped novel by publisher. It’s a bit ‘meh’. Don’t feel should say so on Good Reads
Spkr 2. I wouldn’t review at all
Spkr 1. My view too.
Me. So no review=bad review? What happened to ‘if you want my opinion, I’ll give it to you, but be sure you want it’?
Spkr 1. I’m more ‘If you can’t say something nice, say nothing’ when it’s books published by friends, & given by friends
Spkr 2. I agree
Me. It’s a thorny problem, especially when said friend can only read the ensuing silence one way …
Spkr 1. I’m given so many books, publishers don’t expect feedback on them all, so silence is ok.
Me. nice get-out clause …
The rest was silence. Continue reading