Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ouch! JA Gill did NOT like The Sixth Discipline

The Sixth Discipline launched at the end of March and since then I have been sending out review copies to lots and lots of review sites. It takes a while for reviewers to get to it, because they all have back logs, but reviews have started to come in. Some have been better than others, of course. There was one that liked the story but not my writing and one that liked my writing but not the story. Today I got a review that didn't like either, and in a big way, too. JA Gill posted a review on Big Al's Books and Pals that was completely dismissive of the story, the characters, and my style (the kindest phrase in the review called my prose “competent, clear, and bland”). Of course, JK Rowling also got dissed, so I shouldn't feel too bad. Also, the review confuses the Fifth Discipline with the Sixth, so it's not perfect either.

Big Al himself is much less inclined to snark; in fact he's famous for having kept his cool when an author went off the rails about a very balanced review (read the 309 comments and you'll see what I mean). I urge you to check out his site if you're at all interested in book reviews of self-published books. He doesn't confine the blog to any one genre so there is something for everyone.


  1. Feeling your pain today, Carmen. JA Gill wasn't crazy about my book, either! Let's just assume Gill wasn't in our core audience. :)

  2. Thanks for the consolation, Susan, but I read your review and it wasn't nearly as caustic. I totally agree on the "not the core audience" part, though.

  3. I haven't found JA Gill's reviews to be particularly helpful. Therefore, I will not make a reading decision based on any of her reviews. As Gill is an occasional reviewer for BooksandPals does cause me some personal concern since I have a book sitting in BigAl's to be reviewed pile.

  4. Do you know for sure JA is female? She doesn't do a whole lot of reviews, so you may luck out and get Big Al, who, even when he doesn't like something, doesn't get snarky.

  5. Carmen asked, "Do you know for sure JA is female?"

    I'm not 100%, but Gill's Google profile showed the pen names as all female. My assumption was if Gill were a male, some of the pen names would have been initials only--but that ain't necessarily so.

    I agree about BigAl. I like all his reviews and they have all been informative, even when he finds much fault with the book. There was one 2 star recently that was actually a good review in that it found a lot to like with the book, but spelled out BA's issues such that the reader can make an informed decision.