Friday, June 29, 2007

That Nasty HK typo that won't get fixed

Jeez. In a review (noted by Barbara, good catch), HK used the word nig instead of big. Despite being reported as inappropriate (I know I pushed that button), it still lingered. So, I emailed Amazon with the review link and note about the inappropriate sentence. Here's their response:

"Thanks for writing to Please accept my sincere apologies for the inconvenience you may have experienced.You can submit product correction requests online. At the bottom of the product detail page of every item on our web site (with the exception of not-yet-released items), you should see a blue Feedback or Suggestion Box where you can report any inaccuracies in that item's listing on our site.When submitting corrections, enter the information *exactly* as it should appear. For example, do not submit Title information in all lower-case or upper-case letters; all words must be spelled correctly.If your correction is approved, it should appear online within 5 to 7 business days. We must be able to verify the accuracy of the new information from multiple sources. If we're not able to, we can't process it.Thanks for visiting"


This is very cool, I'm just starting to play with it, You can catalog and rate your books, and it does a great job of suggesting similar books. Check it out.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Mark-O (Columbus, Ohio) - our new friend Top Reviewer

Mark-O (Columbus, Ohio) Well, he's not officially "Top" yet, but he got the idea! This genius has posted the following text thirty-four times (for thirty-four different books (he has, overall, thirty-five reviews); needless to say, all these reviews rated five stars):
Excellent! Excellent! Excellent! This is a great book to get you involved in this subject. Plenty of examples for all skill levels and are both detailed and useful. Much of this information can't be found in other books. The chapters are well written and in-depth. I recommend this book for anyone that is trying to become an expert on the subject.

We also find it curious that all these books are from Wordware Publishing (which, in my experience, is a shitty outfit from whom I haven't seen ONE good book; I mean, literally).

When I noticed this smartass first, I have committed the Amazon No.1 sin: I posted a surgeon-general sort of warning in the comments section of every single review by this turd. Today I've noticed that they are all gone: here we obviously see the result of the good old delete-and-repost manoeuvre so frequently used by dishonest reviewers when they want to get rid of comments bringing their shenanigans to light. So, all in all, I see in Mark-O good 'topreviewer' material...

Please join me in welcoming Marc-O of Columbus, OH to our select list of Our Friends Top Reviewers!
Stop the press! As investigated by poster "Cathy", reviewer Mark-O also sells the books he reviewed in the used section as 'ship-now-books' 1. This man is really good!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Total Wipeout (Ave Atque Vale, FTF)

Apparently within the last half hour FTF got wiped out by Amazon: everywhere, massively, with no exceptions. Now, that's the case where I can't but welcome the action. Will you, friends, forgive me if I admit to feeling a bit schadenfroh? :-)

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Harriet's Old Tricks. Still Not Impressive.

I just read/reviewed a fantasy novel called SHADOWED BY WINGS. Dark and violent, yes. But Harriet calls this book, in the title of her 'review' no less, a "violent XXX fantasy saga." If I were the author, I would be seriously offended by that, because it implies that everyone is running around having graphic sex, participating in horrific violence, or possibly, both at the same time. Her title completely dismisses (or at least marginalizes) a very good novel. Yes, it's dragons and fantasy. And it also has some interesting things to say, if you draw the fairly clear parallels, about various parts of the world, still extant today.

Yes, I posted my comments. Please also read the Publisher's Weekly blurb on the book's main page, then read Harriet's bs re-write of the SAME blurb, using the SAME words in many cases. Her "review" is liberally sprinkled with very bad guesswork as to what goes on in the book. If you assume that the entire "review" is incorrect and misleading, you won't be far wrong.

Why does this still manage to surprise and anger me? I have no idea. But it does. It really, really does.

Shadowed By Wings on Amazon

Monday, June 18, 2007

Tricky W.Boudville

Our friend W.Boudville would like to look legit, we've already mentioned that. Just so his reviewing record does not appear all-positive, once in a while he picks something real obscure or very, very old -- and gives it a bad review. For example, here our cunning friend W.Boudville picked two technical books that are fourteen years old and slammed them — for what? For being obsolete. That's brilliant.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Just Wondering....

Since Grady Harp cheats and gives himself tons and tons of positive votes, if and when he surpasses Harriet K as #1 reviewer, do you think she will fight back? She hasn't been getting the positive votes she use to and I really think Grady is on his way to push her off the thrown.
If this does happen, the comment soap opera will be old news! Harriet and Grady mudslinging each other!
Joy :)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

What is it with the camel comments?

Twice now, this reviewer,, has made some unusual comments. S.A.M. picked up one the first one, but here's another one "Yes, the camel is now actively involved. The camel is strict and swift, but fair. The guilty shall be punished, and the righteous shall find their reward. Unless the camel gets it backwards, again."

A top reviewer, numerous Amazon friends (including Grady Harp). LOL, even MM doesn't understand him/her. Thoughts?

Security Warning: Amazon Login Data Compromised (?)

There's a new development on the Amazon comments threads (so far in Grady Harp's section): now posters' comments are being deleted not as 'deleted by Amazon', but as 'deleted by author', that is by you.

That means someone's been deleting your messages on your behalf, which means they have access to your account, 'cause one would need to log in as you in order to delete your comments as you.

For an example please check out this thread (it's just one place; there may be others; look carefully). See if there are any comments showing up as deleted by you that you did not actually delete.

If you see anything suspicious, it would make sense to change your password and remove credit card data (if you have any). Well, do whatever you feel prudent on the assumption that your account have been broken into. I do not exclude the possiblity of this being an inside job, so do whatever's necessary in your opinion.

Of course, you should also notify Amazon about this. It looks like someone's helping Grady Harp for serious — hacking into Amazon (or maybe it's an inside job, who knows). And btw, why am I not surprised? Oh well...

The Latest "Hot" Discussion at the HK Reviews

Interesting comments flying around at a book called Courting Trouble. I very much like MK's idea of drafting a letter that all can copy and email to Amazon. I am all for that.

As far as that GROSSLY offensive email sent to Barbara, that needs to be reported. Barbara, if you could copy the email headers and either post them here or send them to me via email I can find the sender's IP address from the headers and use a WHOIS search engine to tell me who the provider is. An abuse email contact is usually provided -- then send the entire hate email to that address including all the headers. They will be able to find out who sent the email and shut him/her down. I would also recommend sending it to Don't know if they'd jump on that or not, but you never know.

Monday, June 11, 2007


I was just browsing through Harriet's "reviews" and happened upon a book that I had read and another book that I was thinking about reading and I absolutely cringed! Ugh! Don't you hate it when you see a book that you enjoyed or that you thought you may read and see her review? Ick! I actually read the reviews. *slaps forehead* It just annoyed me and I thought I would share. I'm sure that everyone has had this experience more than once with HK.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

You've got to be kidding!!

Harriet has now posted 71 reviews over the 14,000 in less than 48 hours.
I noticed for 2 days she didn't write any reviews. Was she reading all those books during that time?!? I am now speechless.

"Deleted by Amazon" : a new batch

A bunch of Grady Harp Voting Machine 'timetables' has just been 'deleted by Amazon'; now more consistently (meaning in more places). It happened suspiciously in sync with Harp's deleting and reposting his latest three reviews (this strange at first sight operation results in a removal of all comments). I wonder if this 'removed by Amazon' statement really means it, or some of them 'top reviewers' can do it themselves (or trigger somehow). Any ideas, observations?

Now that HK has topped 14,000

I seem to recall that I had made an offer once we hit that 14K mark that I would give a $25 Amazon certificate to whoever could write the best HK style review.

Are you guys still interested or not?

Interesting comment on the DB's

From the same thread Barbara had mentioned, go to comment 48. An interesting comment there about what happened to another top reviewer anytime he reviewed the same item as GH. Apparently he received massive neggies in similar quantities that GH receives helpfuls as soon as the review is posted.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

It's Official!!

HK- 14,008 reviews.
She must have had a slow Friday to read 10 books and be able to reviews them all.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Top Reviewers Soliciting Items for Review Update

Interesting, I had noted earlier that I had sent an email to Amazon about blatant pandering for items to review. I received another email today that they ARE STILL CONSIDERING the matter, and begged me for my patience. Oh, I'd like to be a fly on that wall!

Amazon's New Format

Has anyone been to the discussion boards lately? Here is a statement from mirasreviews:

"It is kind of funny to see how the comments have evolved>>
What is GOING ON in Harriet's comments!!? Are you following the action? Who is that First Thing's First person? Where did he/she/it come from? Has Barbara really stopped participating? How can this possibly be good for reviews or customers? Any customer who is fool enough to put a word in gets trampled. Amazon could remove reviews from product pages entirely, and these people wouldn't notice as long as HK is still posting and Grady still gets votes.

No wonder they haven't noticed the new format. "

Anyone have a thought on the new format?

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Recent Events

What the Heck, as long as they are making pissy comments about being quoted at this blog, yet it's OK for comments here to be copied and pasted at Amazon, I thought I'd go for broke.

From Zena:

"Yup you missed all the fun MM. Kross has been slumbering for awhile only to come back with the same pompous and bombastic accusations against my character and raving "mock comebacks" at FTF. He did throw in a little parody of how you talked-guess he felt a bit nostalgic leaving you out for so long.His new "thing" is shouting at us that this is not a chat room and that if we continue to discourse in a style that does not have a whole bundle of meaning, he will continue to harass us at all cost-don't you just love it! "

I certainly didn't see anything pompous and bombastic, nor "harassing". Thoughts?

Is this the longest comment thread ever?

No wonder HK's not writing any reviews. She's probably having too much fun watching the meltdown of reasonable discussions. 212 comments as of 3:30 Pacific time.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

13,998 and going

I wonder why Harriet hasn't posted 2 more to reach the 14,000 mark. On June 4th she had an influx of reviews... hmmmm....
So when do you think she will finally reach 14,000? Maybe she will stay at 13,998 like review #2 who is as 6666 because he finds it funny.

Monday, June 4, 2007

What is going on over there?

I swear, madness has set in, it's as bad as the DB boards at the HK review comments. Barbara, I commend your efforts in doing research on the books, looking at the other reviews, Publishers Weekly, etc. It might help a potential purchaser think twice about taking those reviews seriously, but the counter effort by another commentator is really beyond belief. And what about those three groupies adoring every word said?

BTW, JJJS and myself have both had a comment removed from a GH review, where we were documenting the times and vote counts. I wonder if it was considered spam somehow?

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Negative Votes and other thoughts

One question I have and it maybe so obvious, how do you know what you start getting negative votes? Is it when you look on your profiler page and one of your reviews has the example of: 0 out of 2 people think about your review?
I've been noticing this on my newer reviews I have written, not that it phases it me too much because god forbid I want to be number 1 like Harriet! I also noticed that she hasn't been getting too many helpful votes for her reviews, so I guess that goes for something.
I also find it so hilarious that Harriet will be reaching the 14,000 mark, probably by the end of the week and it makes me think how many books I have read in my lifetime. I am turning 31, and started reading hardcore around 13. So give or take I have been reading for about 17 years. I think I can clock the amount of books I have read both in school and personally maybe near 1000, possibly give or take a few hundred.
I wonder why Guiness hasn't gotten in tough with her for the most prolific reader ever in history! LOL

Friday, June 1, 2007

What is going on?

Not trying to be melodramatic or anything, but there is a heck of a lot more hostility in the comments than there ever used to be! My jaw actually dropped while I was reading some of the comments posted today. I used to enjoy reading some of FTF's comments, but now he seems to be on the attack against Barbara - anything she posts, he immediately jumps on! What happened to him??!? What is going on?

Top Reviewers Soliciting Items to Review

Update, I had sent an email to Amazon about a week or so ago about a top reviewer who was blatantly soliciting items for review. I had received a reply that they needed some time to review the matter, and I just received another email today stating "I wanted to send you a quick e-mail to let you know that we are still researching the matter regarding a "top reviewer" soliciting items for reviews".

I'd like to be a fly on the wall in those meetings.

And Barbara, you are most courageous to keep on chiming in as you do at HK's reviews. It's getting to be quite a jungle there.