Monday, April 13, 2015

Some Books

...Are magical attractants for a kind of ignorant hysteria. You can usually identify them on Amazon by a couple of traits: they have large proportions of the highest and lowest ratings, with little in between, and the negative ratings come overwhelmingly from those who are not Amazon verified purchasers. The latter circumstance is hardly proof that they haven't read the book, but it is a clue.

Of course any book advocating a polarizing position is likely to attract both hostility and support, but the distinguishing characteristic is whether any cogent arguments are brought to the case. The distinguishing characteristic of what I tend to think of as the ignorant non-reader review is the one sentence slam with no particulars, like this canonical example:

Lousy book - very biased and without much research. tendency to twist facts and research to push own conclusions.

Said of a book with several thousand specific citations of original documents.