The worst book blurb I have read

Get this:

“The written equivalent of a Botticelli.”

That is from an advertisement for Antony Doerr’s All The Light We Cannot See.

The book has stellar Amazon reviews, and the MSM reviews are quite positive (or here), and yet I bought it only with reluctance, more to satisfy my curiosity than because I think I will enjoy or finish it.

What exactly is so bad about that blurb?  After all, I like Botticelli.  I like Botticelli a lot.  But if they are targeting readers who think such a book can be compared meaningfully to Botticelli, or who would be impressed by such a designation…then I start to worry.  And that one piece of Bayesian information weighs more heavily in my mind than all the praise for the work I have encountered.


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