Wrote another, "You know when you're sitting on the toilet and you can choose between reading this book or the ingredients on the back of the baby powder? Choose the baby powder. I couldn't get through two pages before my eyes started bleeding."
Then came what must've been a tongue-in-cheek recommendation.
"Forget Harry Potter. Forget Stephen King. Forget Citizen Kane. Forget that Citizen Kane wasn't a book," wrote one reviewer. "[This] is the book you'll be talking about to your children's children. It's the Dune of our generation. Imagine if Tolkien were alive today and writing SciFi Romance, and you'll have a good idea what this book is like. [This book] is the thinking person's scifi romance novel! Read it now before it's made into a major motion picture!"
Said the next person: "The above review is more creative than the book."
I realized then why I'd saved the link as something to read when I'm down. It was to remind myself that few things can be more inspiring than to read a really bad book. One that somehow got published.
So many times I've finished the last page feeling disappointed by a terrible ending, by a character who suddenly does something completely uncharacteristic, by a far-too-convenient solution, or by some other sin that makes me angry to have wasted time on the book. I'll often be so aggravated I'll toss the book in the trash rather than get a quarter from some future yard sale book buyer looking for a cheap read.
But not anymore. Not now that I've realized even horrible books have something to offer: hope.
Hope that if drivel like that managed to get a publisher's stamp of approval, that maybe someday, I, too, might have my name on a cover.
I recognize the impossibility of writing a book that everyone loves, but if I keep at it long enough, maybe I'll write something that at least inspires a few other writers.
Reach Karin Fuller at karinful...@gmail.com.