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Book review unbalanced

Re “Where is the real apple flavour?” (Crosscurrents online edition, May). Laura Thomas’ review of A Second Cup of Hot Apple Cider is unfair. The reviewer calls the stories “perfect for those stolen moments – almost.” She then makes a sweeping generalization by claiming that “without exception,” every one of the 51 pieces in the book, in multiple writing genres, by 37 different writers, needs improvement in five areas. The reviewer offers no evidence to substantiate this indiscriminate statement, leaving readers with the conclusion that the writing quality in every piece is inferior and lacking.

In the interest of journalistic fairness, it should be pointed out that a number of others do not agree. At the same time as the Herald review was published, A Second Cup of Hot Apple Cider broke all records by being shortlisted 27 times – the most ever for any book – in The Word Guild Canadian Christian Writing Awards. Sixteen of the pieces in the book were chosen by expert judges to be finalists in six award categories. In another contest, InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship recently presented its Nonfiction-Print Award to the piece titled “The Road Trip That Wasn’t.”

Simultaneously, A Second Cup of Hot Apple Cider achieved the milestone of becoming a Canadian bestseller. And it was named Gift Book of the Year by the U.S.-based Christian Small Publishers Association, in a people’s choice award voted on by book retailers and readers.

Wendy Elaine Nelles,
Co-editor, Hot Apple Cider Books,
Toronto, Ont.

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