Harriet Klausner, of Morrow, Georgia, died October 15, at age 63. She was a former librarian, newspaper columnist, and a lover of books.
Why is the death of Harriet Klausner important, you might ask.
Harriet not only loved books; she reviewed them, and posted 31.014 reviews on Amazon. At one time, she was the #1 ranked reviewer on Amazon. She never gave more than four stars to any book she read. In 2006, Time magazine chose her as person of the year, as one who impacted the information age.
Harriet Klausner represents the way books are read, reviewed and sold today. Harriett Klausner lived an ordinary life as an ordinary wife, mother and working woman. However, she had a passion for the written word, to not only read it, but write about it. Her reviews were coveted by ordinary writers, like you and me.
Today, we look to our peers for reviews and opinions about our books. We no longer scour The New York Times Best Seller List; we don't call up Barnes & Noble and ask them what the big seller is today. No, we turn to the reviews and opinions of ordinary people. People just like us, who love to read and want to read good books. We also hope to receive reviews of our own work from people just like us. People just like us is the new The New York Times Best Seller List.
I think Harriet Klausner did more for book reviews and books sales than any big time newspaper could have done. She supported writing and readers. We should do the same. We may not post a meg-number of reviews but we should make our voices heard regarding our fellow authors' work.
So, salut Harriet, where ever you are. I hope you have an armful of books still.