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192 Brown Coats

Archer's Asylum

I'm a big bloke (7ft tall) and I am forever reading. This will mostly be my thoughts as I am reading and possibly a review or two. You may know me as Archer.


I am basically a lurker. My life revolves around my wife, my cats, Books, and entertainment.


I'm working on building and setting up a forge and I'm generally one of those people who can be found causing or in the middle of mischief somewhere...

If you don’t like it… Then don’t read it!

I am going to be honest. I am getting sick and tired of hearing this from people who dislike negative reviews. Have you ever actually thought about that statement before? I mean really?


It doesn’t even make sense. On soooooooooooooooooooooooooooo many levels. “If you don’t like it… Don’t read it!” Now someone please, tell me exactly how can you know that you won’t like a book before you’ve read it? You can’t, but lets look at some of the most popular tagged on statements I’ve heard.


  1. You don’t like the cover.
  2. Your friends don’t like it.
  3. You don’t like other books like it.
  4. You don’t understand it and question it too much.
  5. You’re too old to like it
  6. You’re too young to like it
  7. You read it wrong
  8. You don’t like the author


Those are the just some of the statements that I have personally seen being used either before, or just after, the use of “If you don’t like it. Don’t read it”. Now please let me be the first among us to stand there scratch my head, stroke my beard, sigh and utter “Dafuq?”


Look at those statements I mean really look at them and try to get behind the mentality of them. “You don’t like the cover”… Big freaking deal, I don’t like cover for lots of books that I love. Covers have nothing to do with the writing of a novel.


“Your friends don’t like it” *headdesk* I AM NOT A SHEEP! I read quite a lot of things that my friends dislike. And vice versa. And as for my real life friends… Practically none of them read anything that I’d like. We have different tastes… IT’S PART OF BEING HUMAN!


“You don’t like other books like it.” This one actually holds some semblance of a good point, however, just because I didn’t like a previous book that was similar to this one, doesn’t mean I won’t like this. If I’m interested in the synopsis of the book then I’ll give it a try.


“You don’t understand it and question it too much”…


I don’t even… There are no… DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW PETTY THAT SOUNDS? You have to understand a book to enjoy it? You have to not question a work to gain enjoyment of it? I’m sorry but what? If everybody who loved, let’s go with Harry Potter, understood it and questioned it at more than face value then it would not be loved by children around the world. But also if it didn’t have a deeper meaning that people had to think about to understand, and to question the underlying subtext then, conversely, it wouldn’t be loved by adults.


“You’re too old to like it.” Fuck off


“You’re too young to like it.” See above? Then keep fucking off.


“You read it wrong.” The fuck does that even mean? You can’t read a book wrong. Yes I will bring different things to a book with experiences of my life than, for arguments sake, my wife will with hers… But neither of us can read a book wrong. That statement doesn’t even make any fucking sense whatsoever!


And last but not least, my personal favourite, “you don’t like the author.” Bollocks, that’s what I think of that statement. What utter crap. Just because I have disliked an authors previous works DOESN’T mean I will dislike all of them. I disliked Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency By Douglas Adam’s… But I love The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy.


None of those comments make sense to me… I have failed to get into the mentality behind them… Wait, my beard senses are tingling again… they’re telling me that’s because I’m not a rabid fan. I have recommended books I don’t like to people, because I genuinely think they will enjoy them. But I didn’t know I wasn’t going to like it going into it. I never go into reading a book, knowing and/or hoping I won’t like it. Why would I waste my time on something I knowingly dislike so much?


So all I can say to people is… if you get told “if you don’t like it, then don’t read it” just scratch your head, momentarily try and comprehend the idiocy of the statement and then move on. Otherwise you’ll go a bit weird… Much like me.