Fun Lists

Reading 1-Star Reviews of Books I Loved (Part 2)

“Saturn’s moon Titan is the nearest celestial body that is hospitable to human life.”

First line in The Darkness Outside Us by Eliot Schrefer

As promised, I’m here with the opposite post of what I did last week so I’m reacting to 1-star reviews of books I loved. 1-star reviews are always more fun to read than their 5-star counterpart because people tend to find so many creative ways to get an outlet for their frustration. So this is all just in good fun. I’ve done this once before a couple of years ago, so this one features the books I’ve loved more recently. Enjoy!

Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb

It’s the mustache comment. I’m picturing it so clearly! Anyway, the reviewer is right. The villain isn’t the most interesting guy and I was also waiting for there to be more to him for the entire trilogy but he continued to be this caricature of a villain, so I understand the reviewer’s complaint.

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

You can criticize my favorite books all you want as long as you make a joke out of it 😂 But yeah, there’s not much to hold on to in Piranesi, which is what I love about it but it’s not for everyone.

The Betrayals by Bridget Collins

The most common criticism of this book is that people want Collins to have explained stuff more BUT SHE DOESN’T NEED TO, OKAY. That’s the whole point! Explaining all that in detail would have distracted the reader from the important themes the book is trying to explore. You don’t need to have everything shoved in your face! And the Lord of the Rings analogy might be a little faulty because that also fails to explain why the ring is so important but people still love the story.

To Paradise by Hanya Yanagihara

…You don’t think there was a reason for the identical names? It was just Yanagihara really liking those names and not wanting to use different ones? Come on! But at least we agree that Part One was the best and that the other two could be described as boring.

City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty

DNF AT PAGE 4?!? WHAT?? How can one even do that?? AND feel they know enough about the book to rate it? But I guess if they’re allergic, they know pretty early on 🙄 I’m quite curious about their comment about it being a more competent version of The Goblin Emperor because I generally thought people liked that book or at least found it well-written. I’m reading it soon myself so I guess I’ll find out.
I feel like the rest of the review is them saying they don’t like an opening scene to be info-dumpy, which just makes me think they must DNF a lot of books at page 4.

The Darkness Outside Us by Eliot Schrefer

I picked this review because of the comment about The Darkness Outside Us being similar to Winter’s Orbit because I’ve read both and cannot fathom why the reviewer would think they were similar. They’re both sci-fi with a m/m romance… and that’s it. They couldn’t be more different and I also don’t think the synopsis is trying to make you think that they are similar in any way.

And then I’m just confused about the last paragraph. They say that the depressingness of the book isn’t a part of their assessment… but it clearly is? Otherwise, why make it such a big deal that the book isn’t “hopeful or positive”? It’s fair not liking such books but just be honest about it.

Have you ever DNF’d a book at page four? I think I’m still in shock over that one. Anyway, this was fun to do. I really don’t mind people not liking my favorite books because I usually understand why, and rants are just fun to read. But let me know if you thought any of these reviewers had a point if you’ve read the books.

8 thoughts on “Reading 1-Star Reviews of Books I Loved (Part 2)

  1. I don’t even know where to begin… So I guess we’ll just have to go through these chronologically! 🙃

    First, I just cannot stop laughing at the image of Regal twirling his virtual Snidely Whiplash mustache 🤣🤣🤣 Now I know what I’m going to be picturing next time I do a Farseer Trilogy reread, so thank you for that 🙈

    Also, I hardcore agree with the Piranesi reviewer 😇 The second sentence pretty much sums up my thoughts on the book perfectly. Although, fine, maybe rating it one star is a bit harsh…

    I’m 100% on your side regarding The Betrayals, however. All the people just don’t understand it! 😭😫😭 I saw so many of those reviews when I was looking for something for my own reaction post, and I think my heart broke a little every time. However, thanks to this one, I am now picturing the Lord of the Rings without knowing what the ring, Mordor, or hobbits are, and it’s hilarious 🤣 I think for that, I am willing to forgive the reviewer.

    I’m having a lot more difficulty with To Paradise, though. Excuse me, but how can anyone think Part III is boring when it is obviously the very best one?!? 😤 And considering how much those identical names got us theorizing, I think we have proof that they are ingenious!

    The City of Brass one, though 😤😡😤 I’m sorry, but you just cannot form an opinion of a book after just four pages!! Sure, DNF it halfway through or something, and we can talk. BUT FOUR PAGES??? ARE YOU KIDDING ME!?? 😳 I actually don’t think I’ve ever liked a book after four pages (unless it was a sequel or something) because it always takes me some time to get invested in the story and characters… And even if you realize you hate the writing style after a couple of sentences, you don’t know enough to judge the books content in its entirety yet! You can still have a good story with terrible writing!

    And The Darkness Outside Us? I’d see it was depressing AND hopeful at the same time, which makes it so awesome 🥰 The reviewer just doesn’t get it!

    So yeah, although this was painful, it was highly entertaining! And no, obviously, I have never DNFed anything four pages in. Well, okay, maybe I have at the bookstore, if you count reading the beginning to get a feel for the book and whether you might like it as properly starting it. But I don’t DNF things I have decided to commit to! (Although, after this month, I might have to rethink that because trying to read Mein Kampf is one of the dumbest decisions I’ve ever made in my life. I don’t see how I’m going to make it through hundreds more pages of it without dying of simultaneous hatred and boredom, but now that I’ve invested so much time, I also can’t just quit! 😅)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol that comment about Regal’s mustache was just glorious 😂 The same with the Piranesi one while I had my suspicion you’d agree with that one 😉 I’m glad you at least rated it a little higher 🙈

      We need to start giving crash courses in The Betrayals to people who’ve read it but don’t understand it because yes, there were so many reviews that were some variation of this one! 😤 And well, if Tolkien hadn’t explained the ring, Mordor and hobbits, maybe I would have loved those books 🤷‍♀️😄

      And sorry but Part I is still the best in To Paradise 😁 But with that review it just baffles me that they didn’t think there was a reason behind the similar names! They just notice it and move on! We definitely can’t relate to that 😅

      I was reading The City of Brass review and thought they had some decent points but that was totally me assuming their opinions were based on the entire thing. And then they just throw in a plot twist at the end and reveal they’ve only read four pages. I’m still not over it! They had not even met all the important characters yet! I mean, I can understand trying out a book by just reading a couple of pages to see if it’s something for you (like you in a bookstore), but that you then feel you can rate it 1 star AND writing a longish rant review of Goodreads! What’s wrong with people?!?

      With The Darkness Outside Us I actually had another thought I didn’t want to write in the post because it’s a bit spoilery… but doesn’t the book have a happy ending? I mean, that whole thing could have ended WAY worse. Because yes, at the very least I’d call it a hopeful ending and I don’t understand what the reviewer is missing.

      When you started Mein Kampf, I figured it was school related but if that was 100% your own decision, I actually think it’s fine if you quit that one 😅 But you’re using the same excuse for not stopping as I am with Hobb: Now that we’ve invested so much time, we just can’t quit 😂 Maybe we need to work on that.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Exactly! Like, who gets petty enough after FOUR PAGES to write a review that is almost as long as the amount of book they read??? 😳 And here I thought my reviews were long… Seriously, don’t they have anything better to do?

        Also, I agree with you that The Darkness Outside Us has a happy ending! Maybe it’s a bit bittersweet – they are alone on that planet, after all, there’s no guarantee that humanity will actually survive, and several of their predecessors were sacrificed along the way – but they’re alive and in a happy relationship! It’s happy! 😄

        And nope, I unfortunately have to inform you that the Mein Kampf thing is due entirely to my own stupidity 😅 I’ve always been insanely curious about it, especially since distribution was illegal in Germany until 2015 (yes, I was one of those kids who immediately got interested in something when it was forbidden 😁), so I thought in might be really interesting from a historical perspective. Particularly since we’re currently seeing so many nationalist shifts all across the globe… However, while I was prepared for a whole bunch of racist garbage, I wasn’t prepared for how badly written and boring it is! Hitler constantly goes on tangents about the most random topics ever, the language is terrible, and honestly, the fact-checking footnotes are more interesting than anything he has to say. But, like, now that I’ve made it this far, I want to be able to say I’ve read the freaking book! And I guess it IS interesting historically speaking – just not enough that I would’ve ever attempted this if I’d known what awaited me 🙈 You’re way betree off with Hobb! But yeah, we should probably both work on our DNFing skills… 😂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Not that Mein Kampf was ever a book I expected to read but you’ve definitely deterred me from it now 😂 The fact-checking footnotes do sound interesting though and I can understand how that would be the best part.

        Also, I left you a comment yesterday that you haven’t responded to so now I just want to check if I’ve actually managed to get into your spam folder? 🤗😁

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I expect you to be eternally grateful 🤣

        And I did reply to your other comments! You just commented in such a weird manner that my blog didn’t realize it was you 😜 Which probably means you’ll have to access the Project Hail Mary page again manually in order to see my reply… (At least, I hope that solves that problem – I’ve already had enough issues with WordPress this week! 😅🙈)

        Liked by 1 person

  2. *peeks out of a corner* i’ve dnfed a book at page 2 or 3 lmao (ebook, iirc kindle called it page 3). i rarely dnf, and never dnf books i spent money on (sunk cost fallacy yay…) but writing style is one of the things that if i am not about it, i actually can’t.

    Piranesi is the only one i’ve read of these (and loved! also a fave of mine) but lmao they do have a point and that’s a great joke.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I can understand that. Writing style isn’t such a dealbreaker for me personally so I’ve never DNF’d a book because of that so early, but it’s obviously something that’s going to be evident rather quickly in a book. With the reviewer in the post, I think the fact that they read so little but then decided to rate it 1 star and write a rather long rant review I found the most strange.

      But I’m glad you loved Piranesi too! 🥰

      Liked by 1 person

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