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TCS: Authors Corner Volume 1: Issue 8: Opinionated


Harakiri

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Volume 1

 

Issue 8: Opinionated

 

 

 

In this issue, I decided to talk about this most amazing thing called the review. While most people steer clear from opinions from other people, usually because the other person is wrong, I find that reading a review is always helpful in finding what is wrong with someone.

 

Take for instance, the ultra popular Harry Potter series. It has stellar reviews, and a huge cult following, which I don't understand because I have found these books to be dull, really boring, and ultimately not even worth it. The story is full of hiccups, the characters are ultimately cut outs of a nerdy teenage girl, a kid who knows absolutely nothing, and the mischievous little rascal, which have all been fleshed out in much better books. Below, I'll hide some reviews for the first Harry Potter book I found review it l like I believe someone should.

 

ALL REVIEWS WERE FOUND ON AMAZON.COM!

 

 

 

 

 

[hide=]I am a fifteen-year-old girl whose friends adore Harry Potter. I read this book in an attempt to see whether this book would live up to all the hype surrounding it. I thought that I would perhaps enjoy this book, as I am normally a big fan of "different world" stories. Boy, was I disappointed.

 

I do not think that this book will induce others to practice witchcraft, etc. The reason why I don't like Harry Potter and the Sorceror's Stone is because IT ISN'T A GOOD BOOK. This story moves like a television series, each storyline acting as an episode. But there is one difference: television shows do a much better job at depicting characters and storylines. J.K. Rowling's use of description is bland and amateurish. I realize that this book was written for children, but couldn't Rowling have at least attempted to use a higher sense of vocabulary? Roald Dahl uses very simplistic vocabulary in his stories, too, but he comes off as charming - Rowling just seems to be somebody who CAN'T use a nice vocab word every now and then.

 

Let's move on to the actual story. This is where the "unoriginal" trait comes in. Can we say "Cinderella"? The story of Harry Potter is too contrived. We've all seen the main storyline before: kind orphan boy/girl who just so happens to be whisked away to someplace "magical" for them; is great at everything and wins the admiration of practically everybody, with the exception of a few jealous enemies here and there. This storyline has been DONE TO DEATH, and Harry Potter doesn't make it any better.

 

This book is definitely not a classic. The Chronicles of Narnia - that's a classic. A Wrinkle in Time - that's a classic. Harry Potter doesn't come even close to those or many others. My literature teacher once put books into two different categories: thinking books and non-thinking books. Harry Potter belongs in the latter. This is a book that will go in one ear and out the other, not something that will stay with you for years on end. If this book ever becomes as "classic" as Cinderella or Snow White, the world will have had lost its mind.

 

This book definitely does not live up to the hype.[/hide]

 

 

 

[hide=]I can say that I was hopelessly sucked-in as well. But that was just the problem. After finally finishing the book I realized "Oh, wow, that was such a page-turner, I'm surprised it wasn't some cheap dime-store pulp."

 

I agree with many of the comments that I've read (but mostly the negative ones, which are severely lacking):

 

*The plot is nothing new, and I've only read the first one

 

*There are many elements that, far from being a "tribute" to great books/series such as Tolkien's LOTR and Lewis' Chronicles of Narnia, are merely lifted straight from the best elements of the said books.

 

As examples, compare Dumbledore's suspiciously Gandalf-ish character description. Another is the troll scene in the girls toilet: this is almost so plagiaristic that there should be a lawsuit. And finally, how do you like the scene at the end where Harry wakes up in bed, after a few days in respite from his exploits, and low and behold, Dumbledore is sitting beside this supposed "hero".

 

Along with the "Scooby Doo" ending (I thought of this myself before reading the reviews), severe lack of moral focus, and just generally mediocre writing, I wonder why any adult would get excited about it and infect their children with the same.

 

There is truly a gigantic corporate/media hype about this series that is simultaneously ungodly and unnatural. I'm glad, though, that I have read the first book; now, if anyone hears me criticizing the book, at least I can't be accused of not reading it.

 

There is so much more out there in the world of literature: don't start here. In a century, and maybe as soon as 20 years, J.K. Rowling will surely be forgotten. Her writing is far from classic.[/hide]

 

 

 

I won't continue the string of Harry Potter bashing. There were quite a few one star reviews on Amazon (more than I expected), but ultimately, they all sucked. Instead of giving a (somewhat) thought up review, they were just:

 

 

 

"HARRY POTTER SUCKS! READ THIS! THIS BETTER!"

 

 

 

While the previous reviews do involve the names of books, they don't compare them. I feel that a lot of the time, books cannot be compared because I personally don't like Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings, so can't see how one is better than the other when ultimately, I think they are on the same level of suck (though Tolkien could actually write).

 

So, today we talk about reviews! Why? Because The Coffee Shoppe is about to embark on an epic journey through reviews land.

 

 

 

 

 

MAIN ARTICLE: REVIEWING A BOOK

 

I am in no way a "professional reviewer" if there is such a thing. I understand that opinions differ considerably from person to person, and while everyone likes to put their opinion out there, it ultimately will not usually matter for most people.

 

I myself love to review things from my general stand point that everything sucks anymore. That's just what I think. Cartoons suck, music sucks, the latest books have not been very good, I have not seen a good movie since Watchmen.

 

That is where a true reviewer should stand, not at the middle where you like a bit of everything, you should really either love everything (that way we know what sucks) or hate everything (that way we know what's good). Roger Ebert has reviewed movies for so long, I can't even count them. If you look at some of his reviews, he said the Mummy 3 was the best in the series, which is so far from right. He also declared Indiana Jones 4 as being good. He is one of those middle people who aren't really suited to reviewing, because they have to much love and to much hate for things.

 

Do you understand what I am saying? Reviewing things is one of the easiest jobs in the country because all you have to do is give an opinion. But, when you don't already have your feet trapped beneath a cement block in your mind that either has the giant letters hate, or love on it, then you really shouldn't review.

 

That's just my general opinion on the matter.

 

 

 

Any ways, I believe that if you want to review something good, you should point out something bad in it. If you just admit the whole things good, you are a liar. Nothing is perfect besides nothing. Nothing is probably the most perfect thing.

 

Also, when you review something bad, say a good thing or two, nothing can be that bad. Harry Potter has a neat idea with the quiditch thing.

 

Ultimately, the game of reviewing is one of the easiest ones, but the appeal of a review is so widespread that it's just impossible to write a review that everyone agrees with.

 

 

 

I might sound like an idiot, I probably am, but that's just my basic opinion of reviews.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

QUESTION OF THE WEEK

 

When reading a review, do you read multiple ones in order to get a wider set of opinions, or do you give up at the first one?

 

 

 

 

 

THIS WEEKS RIDDLE

 

 

 

By day I am gone

 

By night I am not

 

For at the strike of midnight

 

When there is not a sight of light

 

I become the thing you sought.

 

 

 

I don't know what this is but an answer would be quite lovely.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I ran along the lavatory

 

I never thought I'd meet a man like you

 

Meet a man like you

 

With thinning hair and a missing eye

 

The kind of eye that looks all over you

 

looks all over you

 

 

 

And I ran, I ran so far away

 

I just ran, I ran from that nasty fate

 

But couldn't get away

 

 

 

A tangle of hair appears above your head

 

The kind that could grab you

 

could grab you.

 

The hair is coming nearer still

 

It's about to entangle you

 

entangle you

 

 

 

And I ran, I ran so far away

 

I just ran, I ran from that nasty fate

 

but couldn't get away.

 

 

 

Pulled out a knife to get you away

 

But didn't want to pay for the puncture wound

 

for the puncture wound

 

You open your mouth to talk to me

 

Ask me where the toilet papers at in the bathroom

 

in the bathroom

 

 

 

And I ran, I ran so far away

 

I just ran, I ran from those poopy stains

 

I finally got away.-Written while taking some medicine that made me so dozy, I barely understood what was going on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NEXT WEEK: WHATEVER I WANT!

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Answer to the question: I read as many as possible, and check the overall rating of whatever it is I'm looking into, be it a CD, a book, or a video game.

 

 

 

Riddle: Is it sleep?

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Answer to the question: I read as many as possible, and check the overall rating of whatever it is I'm looking into, be it a CD, a book, or a video game.

 

 

 

Riddle: Is it sleep?

 

 

 

You win the riddle... :evil:

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To be honest other peoples views suck, I don't care to read them if it's on something like a book, simply because people have a habbit of seeing things that aren't there. Also about the Harry Potter thing, it's just 'a bit of crap' that everyone feels they can induldge in. While I find Tolkien's writings somewhat dull, while C.S. Lewis is a bit too dry for my liking, it doesn't mean I can't enjoy their books.

 

 

 

That said however there is only one author I'd intricately trust enough to buy on of his books without reading the blurd: Terry Pratchett. :) :P

Look guys... I absolutely must be a mass baby-seal murderer!

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Yes, I do agree. For you to review you must have extremist views. Too much acceptance is as bad as too much hatred. And then there are those whose reviews describe the text as mediocore not giving reason why for. Also, I do read several reviews to get a broader picture.

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