Hate it. Love it.

Anyone that knows me, knows I’m very picky with what I read. Reading a sizeable novel–especially at my pace–takes a while, and I have to be absolutely certain I will like a book before I’m willing to commit to it.

I was making a book order on Amazon.com this weekend– really just plucking out some books from my wish list. I took down:

  • The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho
  • The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • Then after clicking my way to the cart, Amazon informed me that if I were to add just a measly 3.35$ to my total order, I would be eligible for free shipping. So it’s either I find something that costs 3.35$ and get the shipping free or dish out an extra 4.25$ . Clearly, the reasonable thing to do was add something else to the cart. So I looked. The only thing I wanted that comes close to reaching my 3.35$ is a 6$ paperback Star Trek novel (yes I said “Star Trek”; I can almost hear the shudders of disgust, and the nods of disapproval).

    So the search for a good Star Trek novel began, and after some searching through the lists, I came across Cardassia and Andor (Worlds of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Vol. 1); It screamed “Buy Me”. And being the nervously uncertain guy that I am, and easily persuaded by the voice of public opinion, I read the reader reviews that followed:

    5 stars The Cardassia story is excellent., July 30, 2004 …

    4 stars Andorian fans should love this!, May 25, 2004 …

    2 star Boring…, February 15, 2005

    1 star I was disappointed, November 6, 2004

    As you can see, the reviews did little but exacerbate my petty decisioning dilemma.

    It comes to show, what one person loves, another despises. One person’s junk, another’s treasure. I put so much weight on the opinion of others when making a decision, and in reality, opinions are so conflicting, so biased, so inconclusive, that sometimes… they can be almost meaningless.