Warning: This Manview observation might just piss off a lot of women - readers and authors alike. But that said, while reading this, please bear in mind that he DOES read romance, and he is admitting to HAVING a BIAS. And please do not shoot the messenger!
So without further ado, here's the latest Manview observation.
Let’s face it romance readers, and – yes – I am referring to the large group of you who think you can score a billionaire who wants to satisfy your every need just because you – ahh, … - exist! It just ain’t going to happen! And when I read this type of stuff, I am downgrading my review by 1 - 2 points out of 5. So if I give the book a 2-star rating, it was probably written well enough to be a 4-star rating and you (female reader) probably gave it 5 stars because your fantasies were fulfilled (did I mentioned that in reality, it “ain’t going to happen!”).
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In general, I expect I am rating books lower than a female reader would for this reason. I also have found that if it involves zombies, paranormal or some other type of woosy-floosy crap, I have probably rated in down another half-star or full-star. I mean, some books just do not have a chance to be above 2 stars with me! Yet, I love a good corporate success story, a good historical novel and a few other romance sub-genres and a book within those sub-genres may be elevated a half or full star when I rate them. I am sorry, but that is how biases work and at least I recognise I have them!
Don't get me wrong. I am not dissing the genre. This is a $1.49 billion a year genre and I respect that. It would not be the biggest selling fiction genre if it is not hitting the right target market and has a high demand. I am trying to point out that for me, as a guy, I don't think some of the stories reflect reality and my bias reflects that. As a guy, I want my fiction to have some basis in reality.
I had a quick read of Heat by Cathleen Ross last night and loved it! (BTW, it is a short 45-minute read and interesting on its own, but much more interesting if you have read her award-winning book Base before-hand.) Helen acts the way a man fantasises a woman should behave (and admit it gals, many of you wish you could act and be appreciated like Helen also!) and I had a bit of a woody going on while reading it (too bad the wife was sleeping!). I would rate this book a 4 or 4.5 stars out of 5 which really means it is actually a 5, but the damn zombies probably brought it down a notch.
(Deanna): Read Steve's #MANVIEW for Base here. He speaks very highly of it.
I admire that Deanna’s World uses a well-qualified rating system and explains why a book is a 1-star, 5-star review or anywhere in between. This provides integrity to the reviewing process and ultimate rating. Deanna has been a little looser with me on ratings, allowing me to provide the star rating I believe the book warrants, and she hopes my review in words matches the review I have given in terms of stars. But we discuss the rating and the justification behind it. In general, I will rate a romance novel lower than all other book genres because I think romance is a bit silly and caters to the fantasies of women readers who want to score that caring sensitive billionaire with six-packs, yet he loves her for ‘who she is’ type of guy. Sorry, but if the story is not plausible and it ain’t going to happen in real life, my inherent bias will downgrade it.
So romance writers, if I have given your book a low-star rating, add a star or two and feel good about yourselves and your writing. Remember, this is a Manview and I admit I am biased! I recognise you are writing the fantasties your readers demand and you are fulfilling the demand!
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