Who Cares What Critics Have to Say?
Dan Zak points out over in Style that the movie Transformers has received some of the worst reviews ever--"A horrible experience of unbearable length"; "Striking, shrieking incoherence"; and so on--yet its ticket sales are approaching box office records. Which makes one wonder, of course, whether critics have any influence anymore.
The Post's critics have risen in defense of their profession, including Ron Charles who offers a plaintive plea for book reviewing.
But this week has also given us two testimonials from one group of readers to whom critics matter desperately: authors
Testimonial #1: Alice Hoffman responds to a negative review of "The Story Sisters" by tweeting the Boston Globe reviewer's telephone number, among many other angry comments. She has since closed her twitter page.
Testimonial #2: Alain de Botton responds to a negative review of "The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work" by leaving a comment on reviewer Caleb Crain's personal website that says, in part, "You have now killed my book in the United States, nothing short of that. So that's two years of work down the drain in one miserable 900 word review." De Botton also tells Crain that he hates him.
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