Over the years I have come across many things that can turn a good novel bad. I am not a full -time professional writer or editor although I dabble in both. But I do consider myself a professional reader. With that said, her are, The Waring Rule’s for staying away for the dreaded- One Star Rating.
1. Do not name every character in the novel, the bartender does not need a name if he is only the bartender. Neither does the guy sitting across from the protagonist at a poker game- if he is never again in the story.
2. Some words are spelled differently in England than in the United States. A Defense Attorney in America is different from a Defence Attorney in England.
3. I hate a page with three sentences on a page and a next page with fifteen. A few long sentences are fine, but too many and it gets difficult to read.
4. Comments from a few westerns I have recently read. Please be aware I am a professional historian-these may not bug everyone.
· Fry Bread became popular in the 1860s with the Navajo who were given so little provisions it was one of the few foods they could make. It was never common in cafés or in non-Indian homes. And it was Fry Bread, not, Fried Bread. It tastes great, if you want to try it I posted a recipe on my cooking site some time ago. http://crazy-cooking.blogspot.com/2013/01/journey-bread-and-donuts.html
· Early playing cards were not marked in the corners like todays.
· Cowboys would never have ordered a steak rare
· There were no blue jeans in the old west
· The cowboy did not pull his fixin’s from his shirt pocket
As far as one star ratings, I don’t give them. If I can’t give it a three or better I don’t rate it. I also don’t give ratings to books that already have several dozen ratings. If you are anything like me, I only look at a few of the ratings, that’s enough.