Statler and Waldorf – Book Critics Code of Ethics

Grumpy Old Men
Grumpy Old Men (Photo credit: billypalooza)

Growing up I loved The Muppets, particularly Statler and Waldorf, the grumpy old men heckling everyone from the balcony seat. Years later I found a new love in Simon Cowell, his scathing, yet brutally honest reviews of the singers on American Idol was my favorite part of the show. It is perhaps surprising then that I am struggling as a book reviewer with the stories that I just don’t like. I tend to be a “leap first, look after” type of person and simply did not anticipate that reading “critically” would be that different from the leisure reading I had done my entire life. Thus my current dilemma of what to do when I just don’t like a book. Perhaps I am lending undue weight to my opinion because at the end of the day that is what it is. 

Despite my rash approach to most things I have and am continuing to actively research review formats and content. I read somewhere that publishers do not like negative reviews which from a business standpoint makes perfect sense but ultimately isn’t it the reviewers responsibility to give their “honest” opinion of what they have read?  I believe there is value in almost every review and many times I scroll to the “bad reviews” to determine whether I am going to take a chance on a book however I disregard 1 and 2 star reviews with no explanation to support their rating. 

This being said I believe that all reviewers, critics, bloggers, readers and the like should subscribe to a personal code of ethics and in doing so remember to make sure that their criticism ultimately is constructive. 

Scales Of Justice

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