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the Complete Review

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Editorial Policy

the complete review:

     The complete review makes no claims whatsoever to any form of objectivity in its reviews and opinions. We acknowledge that the biases and personal views of the editors colour all aspects of this site.
     Nevertheless, we go to great lengths to make users of this site aware of other opinions, and to provide them with links to these -- although we reserve the right not to link to a site or page if we deem the information provided irrelevant, uninformed, uninformative, banal, available elsewhere, or it just plain does not suit us.

     Our primary area of interest is literary fiction, although the complete review seeks to cover a broad spectrum of books, including works of non-fiction, biographies, poetry collections, dramas, philosophical tomes, works of literary criticism, and scientific works.
     We are theoretically willing to consider any book for inclusion in the complete review, but we do have certain standards. We have a fundamental aversion to bad books (though inevitably a fair number of these will also be found here). Much genre fiction -- romance novels, most science fiction, some mysteries -- will not find a place at the complete review. (Fortunately, there are other sites that devote themselves to such works.)

     The only literature we find offensive is bad literature, the only opinions we find offensive are those that are badly expressed. We do not kowtow to political correctness, and it is possible that some users of this site will find some of the opinions expressed in the complete review offensive. We regret this, but we remind users that the opinions expressed on this site are just that: opinions. You can do with them what you will. You certainly should not take them all too seriously.

     Users of this site are reminded that the complete review has no control over the content of those sites we provide links to and that we take no responsibility for the information they are exposed to at such sites. Use our links responsibly and carefully.
     In the interests of a broad dialogue and in the quest for wide-ranging argument and opinion the doors of our literary saloon are open to one and all views, including those that are patently sexist, racist, political, religious, obscene, militaristic, rude, bland, inane, insane, or none (or all) of the aforementioned. The fact that doors are open in no way implies agreement with or acceptance of such views by the complete review.
     At the complete review as many views as possible are presented, and it is for the users of the site to decide what to ignore and what to use.
     That said, it should be noted that book reviewers tend to be a dreary, conservative lot and except for personal attacks rarely offer truly offensive criticism.

     All editorial decisions rest solely with the Editorial Board of the complete review.

     Much as we would like to accept cash gifts in exchange for favourable reviews or other types of book promotions on this site we will not do so. We try to maintain a certain integrity on this site, for whatever that is worth. Even if you are convinced of the integrity of the complete review, we still believe that you should approach this site, our reviews, and everyone else's reviews with a high degree of suspicion.
     The editors of this site are not objective in their judgements, and they also have an agenda (we like to think it is one that insists on high standards, clear vision, creative strength, but it is probably much more mundane than that).
     Compare reviews, compare your opinions to that of the complete review, compare them to other reviews.
     Always ask yourself why these people are passing these judgements.

     Remember that one of the great things about the internet is that anyone can put pretty much anything on it with very little money or effort or brains. The downside of that is ... well, that is the downside.
     So: approach everything you see on the internet, including this site, with great care.
     Always think critically.
     Don't trust anyone.
     Be careful what you believe: ask yourself why you believe it.
     Question yourself when you find yourself agreeing with a statement or an opinion.
     Always examine the other point of view.
     If you can't find the other point of view, try to imagine what it might be and why it might be valid.
     These are things we try to do here at the complete review, but we only manage to scratch the surface.

     Scratch deeper.

     The complete review is a tool to simplify your life. It is not last word on literature. It is not even the last word on the books under review here. But it is a start.

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Belorussian translation by Martha Ruszkowski

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