The Jakarta Pandemic earns 200th Customer Review on Amazon…

and the statistics remain the same.

One reader out of five would trip me in the grocery store aisle if they got the chance. Of course, if they read Black Flagged, the last place they would ever consider accosting me, would be a grocery store…especially Whole Foods.

See the full spread here : 200 Reviews

All kidding aside, I anticipated “number 200” to be one of the “beauties” that seem to come up out of nowhere to put balance back into my life and remind me that it is impossible to write a story that everybody will like, nor should you try. 

I’ve developed a thicker skin since publishing my first book in the fall of 2010, and learned some hard lessons about writing in a genre that can be politically polarized. Especially if you throw the occasional dig in either political direction. Hands down, the conservatives were the most sensitive, though I did have liberals weigh in on the protagonist’s actions as well. In celebration of my “200th review” being a positive review, I’m sharing the top ten negative comments “earned” over the past 20 months. To be fair, I won’t add any commentary.

1. “I tried to finish the book hoping there will be a shocking,exciting climax and revelation towards the end but was I utterly disappointed when I finished the book feeling empty.Is this a love story or what??It is so cheesy with the main character and his wife that it makes you sick reading it.How many times do I have to read how much they love each other?seriously once should be enough.I read his first book Black flagged that’s why I decided to read this next one but I can’t believe it’s written by the same writer.” 

2. “The lead character is an arrogant know-it-all. He treated his parents and brother with impatience and superiority because they got their info from FOX News (gasp)!”

3.  “I won’t discuss the liberal social bias of the characters other than to say it was a point of distraction, but perhaps they were intended to be social liberals. There was nothing about the main character or his wife that I liked, and the kids were just wooden props. “Ward and June Cleaver Versus the Virus” could have been a fitting title, based on their 50’s era mind-set, yuppie opinions and “better-than-thou” attitudes. By the time I reached the halfway point of the book, I was rooting for the virus!”

4. “I got about one third the way through and gave up. I rarely give up. I am astounded by the positive reviews. It makes me wonder if any of these reviewers are literate. To put it in a nutshell this book really stinks. You feel like you might lose IQ points if you persist in reading it. Please people for you own sakes don’t expose your brains to this drivel.”

5. “It’s a book written by someone who has no idea of what a real, independant-minded, ex-military man or woman is, and it’s beyond the bounds of my credibilty–as developed by my own military background, current law enforcement and survivalist mentality–that a man with his stated credentials, who has so much to lose and so many weapons and other resources could be such a milksop. I ran some of his scenarios across a female Army Infantry vet coworker and she was disgusted by his behavior. I’m beginning to suspect “Steven” may be a pen name for “Stevie” or “Stephanie”

6. “I’m sorry, but this whole theme of “liberal Marine” just didn’t sit well with me, and was completely unrealistic. However, if you are in the less than 20% of the people in this country who call yourselves liberal, you will probably love it.”

7. “I really like the subject matter and the story idea. I just couldn’t get very far because this book is replete with the usage of the Lord’s name taken in vain along with substantial foul language.”

8. “The author’s blurb describes the “Islamic Republic of Indonesia.” There *is no* “Islamic Republic of Indonesia.” That tells you all you need to know about the author’s bias. Only thing missing from this book is a forward by Newt Gingrich or Glenn Beck. If an author can’t get the name of a country right (it wasn’t a “mistake,” BTW), what else did he “not get right”?

9. “Don’t like the “hero” — he is mouthy and antagonistic, aside from being a thief. Needlessly provokes confrontations right from the beginning. Pretty much brags about being prepped while others did not or could not prep, which of course will guarantee resentment, plus he did not train his family. He makes several stupid mistakes and sets himself up for getting killed — and getting his obnoxious family killed.”

10. “not much there not really good he spends to much time dising fox news and not enough time getting a story that is less tan boring”

I eagerly await number 201. Statistically, if I had to bet…I’d bet on a bad one! 

UPDATE: I beat the odds. #201 was a Five Star Review. My glass is half full again!

7 Comments

Filed under Book Review, The Jakarta Pandemic

7 responses to “The Jakarta Pandemic earns 200th Customer Review on Amazon…

  1. GREGOY PAGE

    Ok — they are entitled to their opinions, even if they are wrong. But lets be fair. Lets read the writers choice for the top ten BEST reviews. Loved each of your books by the way.

  2. Thanks, Gregory. I’ll have to come up with the top ten. I figured that I’d try to stack Karma in my favor by highlighting the bad ones. Readers have been mostly kind to my books, so I’ll found my blessings.

  3. The bad ones are kind of funny! Congrats on 200 plus. You are a god of self-publishing.

  4. I applaud you for doing this. It takes guts to post bad reviews of your writing. I just got a sample of Black Flagged.

  5. Thanks, Jason. It’s taken me a long time to get used to negative reviews. Posting some of the worst reviews is sort of therapeutic for me. Hope you enjoy Black Flagged.

  6. Well, I found the characters very realistic, with their plans AND their flaws. I definitely didn’t read it as having a political bias one way or the other.

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