Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Now This Is What I Mean When I Say Mixed Reviews Are Important

For years I've been a promoter of true critical discussion in blogs rather than limiting posts to book recommendations. Today I found a perfect illustration for my argument at the Excelsior File. David Elzy did a post on Fartiste by Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer with illustrations by Boris Kulikov.

Elzy says right up front that "the book fails me due to a pair of fatal miscalculations." He then goes on to discuss them. However, in doing so he gives us a very good sense of the book's subject matter, which many readers will find...ah...fascinating. The book sounds so...mmm...intriguing...that many readers aren't going to be terribly concerned about the drawbacks Elzy points out. The book may very well be...engaging...enough that they'll seek it out, anyway.

But they can't do that if they've never heard of it. By making Fartiste part of the literary conversation at his blog, Elzy is doing both the book and his readers a favor.


david elzey said...

In the words of my patron saint Eeyore, "Thanks for noticing me."

Mixed reviews are important, and I've felt that way from the beginning of this adventure in blogging. And without both sides there's little point to the conversation at all.

Gail Gauthier said...

Exactly. There is no conversation without both sides.