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I travel or consider purchasing a book or other product, I always look at the reviews. Often it's a futile effort, because of conflicting opinions, one person loving the hotel because the staff is so friendly and another hating it because they were so inept. I have always enjoyed writing reviews, and have increased that activity, with big plans for reviewing books.

For now, it is mostly restaurants and places I visit traveling. When I write a review, it tends to be fairly long and somewhat story like, not just "I had a great meal." As a Top Contributor at Trip Advisor, I have more than 300 reviews read by more than 100,000 people.You can see those refiews by going to: Big stuff, huh? Not! I have now reached the status of being the 17th most prolific reviewer in . . . San Antonio. That's right, just in San Antonio. (Hey, it's the seventh largest city in the United States.) And of those readers, I have an underwhelming 106 helpful votes. Sigh.

Star Ratings

Some reviewers toss out five stars like free candy. Others reserve them for only the most spectacular places. So how can we tell what the actual rating should be? Or what number to give in our own reviews? I rate each according to its specific genre. So, a little roadside cafe may get five stars while I give a gourmet restaurant four or even three. Coffeehouses, for example, must offer coconut milk as a dairy substitute (almond milk is not enough, and soy a definite bummer) to get five stars from me. Books are much more subjective. The review covers content and style, but mostly how much I benefited from reading it. I looked up one of the top reviews on Amazon who has done thousands of book reviews (thinking to ask for a review of one of my books) and his website says he likes to do three or four reviews before breakfast. Huh? Certainly he can't have read the books. He gave high ratings to some books I thought were pure crap. And of course, there are many fake reviews out there. One restaurant had many five star reviews and when I looked at the reviewers, all were first time reviewers and they all did it on the same day. Duh.

This being said, feel free to review any of my books.


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