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July 26, 2007 - 12:21 pm

David Harsanyi, the author of a href=”http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0767924320?ie=UTF8tag=wwwviolentkicomlinkCode=as2camp=1789creative=9325creativeASIN=0767924320″Nanny State,/aimg src=”http://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=wwwviolentkicoml=as2o=1a=0767924320″ width=”1″ height=”1″ border=”0″ alt=”" style=”border:none !important; margin:0px !important;” / is miffed that the left-leaning span style=”font-style:italic;”Publisher’s Weekly/span a href=”http://davidharsanyi.com/blog/2007/07/26/bias-at-publishers-weekly/”gave his book a rather negative/a review: br /br /blockquoteNanny State recently received a short review from the trade publication Publishers Weekly. It was unfriendly. I came away with the feeling that the reviewer hadn’t actually read the book. (I won’t bore you with the specifics.) But then again, who knows, perhaps the review was deserved.br /br /As this is my first book, though, I decided to investigate other Publisher Weekly reviews on Amazon.com. Did a negative review effect sales? Did the reviewer typically betray a ideological position as this one had? This curiosity led to non-scientific stroll around Amazon.com and a discovery. One that Tammy Bruce had already noted. I work in mainstream media. Though I’m not someone who buys into the widespread liberal media meme, the one-sidedness of the PW reviews was inescapable. After all, a provocative or combative political book can be well written and worth reading even if you disagree with the central thesis. I’ve reviewed books for almost a decade. I know this can happen./blockquotebr /br /I wrote about the bias of span style=”font-style:italic;”Publisher’s Weekly/span a href=”http://drhelen.blogspot.com/2007/01/more-scarlet-r.html”in a post here, /aafter finding the same negative reviews of conservative books and positive ones of liberal books. a href=”http://tammybruce.com/2005/11/a_day_at_the_reviews_or_the_mo.php”Tammy Bruce states/a that “conservative authors agree, you know you’ve done a good job when you’ve made span style=”font-style:italic;”Publisher’s Weekl/spany collective head explode. … if PW is foaming at the mouth about a book, and uses the words “screed,” “strident,” or “unfortunately,” (in an effort to appear thoughtful), I consider it a must-read and put it immediately on my list of books to get.” So Mr. Harsanyi, congratulations, maybe that unfriendly review was just a hint that your book will be a real success.

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