Anne Rice is FURIOUS!!!

Teresa Edgerton

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If it was a case of people accosting her with their unsolicited opinions, I would agree with you, Space Monkey. But nobody forces any of us to read reviews, good or bad.

And if people misinterpret a writer's work, isn't it possible for that writer to say, "No, that isn't what I meant at all. This is what I meant instead," without doing it quite so venomously, or showing such contempt for her readers?

She asks, who are you to criticize me? Well, in fact, most of them seem to be the same people who have been buying her books all along, the same people whose opinion was quite good enough for her when it was favorable to her.

And no doubt few of the people who review her books do know how much work goes into writing a novel. I'm not sure how that is relevant, however. It would be pretty boring reading reviews on Amazon if every one of them had to begin with some such disclaimer, "Of course Ms. Rice deserves all due credit for writing a book at all, when many of us here will never write a single one." Because can't we take that pretty much as given?
 

ravenus

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Kelpie said:
And no doubt few of the people who review her books do know how much work goes into writing a novel. I'm not sure how that is relevant, however. It would be pretty boring reading reviews on Amazon if every one of them had to begin with some such disclaimer, "Of course Ms. Rice deserves all due credit for writing a book at all, when many of us here will never write a single one." Because can't we take that pretty much as given?
Precisely. How much effort somebody has taken to make something does not mean anything if the end product disappoints the people who are putting out their hard-eared money for it.
If you're writing only for yourself, keep it to yourself.
 

Space Monkey

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Fair enough, I can't comment on the things to which she was reacting, because I haven't read them. But she said...
In fact, the entire development of my career has been fueled by my ability to ignore denigrating and trivializing criticism as I realize my dreams and my goals.
By this I presume she wasn't irked by regular crit - just the nasty stuff like this:
But your stupid arrogant assumptions about me and what I am doing are slander. And you have used this site as if it were a public urinal to publish falsehood and lies.
I don't believe you write to earn a living; even if you're Anne Rice and get lucky enough to do so. You write because you have to, its a genuine creative need.

Ravenus said:
How much effort somebody has taken to make something does not mean anything if the end product disappoints the people who are putting out their hard-eared money for it.
1. Of course it does, these 2 things bear no relation. It still means everything to the creator - and most people were extremely happy with Blood Canticle. You can't please everyone.
2. If times are so hard that you can't take risks on something as tiny and inexpensive as a book, then you shouldn't be buying books. There are libraries for people who would rather try before they buy. Being a consumer doesn;t give anyone the right to be disrespectful.

And:
If you're writing only for yourself, keep it to yourself.
Who'd ever turn down an opportunity to do what they love for a living?

However, Amazon IS a public forum, so people can freely express their views. On the same hand, whatever people choose to say there can be contested by anyone, including the author. And by its very nature, it isn't a reputable source for criticism or one that I'd take seriously anyway.
 

Circus Cranium

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The controversy over Amazon reviews has been brewing for a while, and stretches beyond the whole Anne Rice thing. Many people are speaking out against the review option, because unfortunately, some people DO use it for slander. A friend of mine is a teacher, and put out a book recently, a very good book. Some kid who didn't like him from class put a very childish blurb up, calling him a moron, yet admitting he'd never read his book. Amazon supposedly screens the reviews before they put them up, but clearly they didn't screen this one----not because of the insult, that's opinion based---but because it wasn't based on the actual work he was posting a review for.

Personally, I'm not sure where I stand on this. What are the options? Having no reviews on Amazon just to avoid the ones that would use it for personal slander? I dunno.
 

ravenus

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D-uh why should an author be bothered by a few slanderous remarks made by random idiots? Her shrill blah only makes her sound like she was auditioning for an amateur production of Jeanne d'Arc.

Idiotic remarks reveal themselves. A dignified silence would have been the most effective retort.
 

Teresa Edgerton

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Well, just to be sure I knew what it was we were all talking about here, I went and read all of the negative Amazon reviews that were written before Ms. Rice's response, just to see what it was that they actually said that was so ugly and slanderous. (I also must admit that I was intrigued to find out what someone like Anne Rice would consider offensive, considering the subject matter of some of her books.)

Either Amazon has removed the worst of the reviews (which seems unlikely, if they allowed them in the first place, and when the controversy must certainly be fueling sales) or Ms. Rice is being incredibly thin-skinned. The most slanderous remarks that I could find were to the effect that the book read like a half-hearted attempt by an author who had lost interest in the characters and the subject matter, or that the story reflected a new conservativism on Rice's part.

Not pleasant for Anne Rice to read, clearly, but by no means the vicious attacks she seems to think they are.

Interestingly, every single one of those negative reviews was written by a disappointed FAN. Not by the people who never liked or understood her work in the first place, who have been denigrating her writing all along, while she soldiered on to achieve her dreams and goals, etc. etc. -- no, by some of the very same people who, collectively, have supported and aided those dreams and goals.

Just my opinion, but there is something particularly ugly in the sight of an author as successful as Anne Rice stomping all over her own longtime devoted readers just because they don't like the way she's been writing her books of late. It's arrogant and cruel.
 

Brian G Turner

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Kelpie said:
Either Amazon has removed the worst of the reviews (which seems unlikely, if they allowed them in the first place
I've only ever written one Amazon review, and that was pulled after about 1-2 weeks. I suspect they may not be particularly keen to leave up particularly negative reviews, which might damage the prospects of a sale.
 

MentalIsues69

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i have read a few books from Anne rice, i have to say... lovely! the whole vampires and draguca(sp?) and blood... yummy! lol, well, i have to say she is a great writer, who one with a great creative should read. Then again, those who look the hardcore blood action ^_^.
 

Space Monkey

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I just wanted to add to this, having just finished Blood Canticle, the book in question.

I really don't understand what all the fuss was about - it was absolutely great, it reminded me of the old chronicles, and what's more, it was an exciting and conclusive sequel to Blackwood Farm. so how come the crit was about this and not Blackwood farm?
 

Circus Cranium

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I loved them too, and I agree, they did remind me of the old chronicles. I'm wondering however, I have a theory. Maybe some of the readers had never read the Witching Hour series---and since in these 2 books, Blackwood FArm and Blood Canticle, she combined those 2 worlds---the vampires and the Mayfair witches---they felt a little lost. I already knew all the characters, so I can't really objectively judge if it would have been disorienting to one who had not read the Witching Hour series.
 

Shoegaze99

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I said:
I've only ever written one Amazon review, and that was pulled after about 1-2 weeks. I suspect they may not be particularly keen to leave up particularly negative reviews, which might damage the prospects of a sale.
There may have been other issues involved. Did you mention the author rather than the author’s work, or did you include a link to this or any other site? Both will get your review pulled.

I’ve written about 100 Amazon reviews, some pretty scathing, and the only one I ever had pulled was one in which I laid into the author rather than the work. Browse almost anything on Amazon and you will find some royally harsh reviews.

Kelpie said:
Interestingly, every single one of those negative reviews was written by a disappointed FAN. Not by the people who never liked or understood her work in the first place, who have been denigrating her writing all along, while she soldiered on to achieve her dreams and goals, etc. etc. -- no, by some of the very same people who, collectively, have supported and aided those dreams and goals.
According to Terry Goodkind, such people – those who have long enjoy an author’s work (in this case his) but who have lately found the work getting worse – are not fans at all. They are evil people seeking to destroy.

No, really. That’s what he thinks. Taken from this enlightening chat:

“The assertion made by these detractors is a note wrapped around a brick thrown through the window. These people are not fans. There are hundreds if not thousands of fantasy books that fulfill their professed taste in books. Why would they continue to read books they claim are bad? Because they hate that my novels exists. Values arouse hatred in these people. Their goal is not to enjoy life, but to destroy that which is good -much like a school child who does not wish to study for a test and instead beats up a classmate who does well. These people hate what is good because it is good. Their lives are limited to loathing and indifference. It isn't that they want to read a good book, what they want is to make sure that you do not. Ignore them.”


He sounds like a charming, modest man.
 

Shoegaze99

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I said:
Terry Goodkind is something of a star at that - you may enjoy the thread: Single-minded Terry Goodkind
Beautiful! I've generally ignored the fine chap, but the tone of his comments and the nature of his opinions of himself recently came to my attention, and I must admit that I'm fascinated. Fascinated in the same way one is when seeing a car wreck, but fascinated nonetheless. I look forward to reading that thread.
 

Tsujigiri

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Arrogance is always an entertaining thing especially when you can see that the person displaying it is slowly digging themselves a hole in the sand....which is filling not with water...but sewage.
 

Amber

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I wrote her an email, saying I liked them, and commenting on that Amazon review, and she sent a nice one back :)
 

Medieval

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I was a rabid fan of Anne Rice back in high school and I believe that her last great Vampire Chronicles book was The Tale of the Body Thief.

Everything after that became too convoluted with religion and the Mayfair Witches.

I believe it was a mistake to combine her vampires with the Mayfairs.

Her writing style remains wonderful but most of the magic went away for me after Body Thief. This is only a personal opinion, naturally.

I consider Lestat to be one of the most fascinating and fall-in-loveable literary inventions of all time.

(There, an entire post without thees and thous.) :D
 

Leto

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IMO she should have stopped the saga after the Queen of the Damned, and although this one and Lestat the Vampire were good, they didn't have the same impact than the original Interview with a Vampire.
 

Jayaprakash Satyamurthy

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Interview with a Vampire actually breathed new life into the vampire tale - just about every story in the subgenre until then followed a pattern that had remained unchanged since Stoker's time. Unfortunately, what with Angel, and Rice-knockoffs, vampire tales now follow a pattern that has remained unchanged since Interview. Time for a new spin on the old bloodsuckers?


I still Aldiss' Dracula Unbound (hope I got the title right) is the most original and mind-bending vampire tale I've read, btw.
 
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