Now I know why Taunton's books all get good reviews.

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Forum topic by Jorge G. posted 06-11-2013 12:20 AM 1511 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Jorge G.

1537 posts in 2740 days

06-11-2013 12:20 AM

I posted a review here on the book “French Polish” by Derek Jones. So I decided to post one in the Taunton publisher web site as I bought the book from them. Maybe this way I would save someone some money since the book is basically $18 thrown down the drain.

Well, Taunton reviews the “review” and does not post those that are not flattering to the book. How about that for a sleazy way to do business? I have tried twice to post the review and both times it was censored, so they have no excuse as to not being posted, since I got a message that states the review will be checked by them and posted within 3 days….not happening, this was a week ago and still nothing.

If you plan to buy a book from them be aware that the reviews are not a reflection on the quality of the book since they do not post those that are not flattering to what they publish.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

17 replies so far

View ShaneA's profile (online now)


7066 posts in 2863 days

#1 posted 06-11-2013 12:24 AM

Makes you wonder who else may be doing the same thing.

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Jorge G.

1537 posts in 2740 days

#2 posted 06-11-2013 12:48 AM

Yeah, one thing is for sure, I won’t buy a book from them again.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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5281 posts in 2887 days

#3 posted 06-11-2013 01:07 AM

Good info. Thanks for the heads up.

-- "It's only wood. Use it." - Smitty || Instagram - out_of_focus1.618

View HorizontalMike's profile


7770 posts in 3178 days

#4 posted 06-11-2013 01:13 AM

In a very similar vein, I tried and failed to get a review of a shoulder plane accepted by Wade-Garrett for THE VERY SAME REASON. For that they will never get any of my business, and will get all of my disdain.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View RogerInColorado's profile


321 posts in 2219 days

#5 posted 06-11-2013 01:17 AM

One of my first stops on considering a purchase is to find reviews on Amazon. They allow posts on products they sell whether you bought it there or somewhere else. It has kept me from some bad decisions.

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9393 posts in 3697 days

#6 posted 06-11-2013 01:29 AM

Bought the same book. Total waste of money. Much better info on the internet. MUCH better

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

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3812 posts in 2226 days

#7 posted 06-11-2013 02:42 AM

I think this is more common than we’d like to think. I also like Amazon’s reviews, but you have to read them with an eye towards weeding out the fake ones. There is a real problem with hired fake reviews to make products look better. Overly positive reviews that don’t mention product specifics or any negatives, or stupid negative reviews put up by people too stupid to own the product so they give a bad review. But at least amazon puts it all up so you can see it and decide. Not putting up a review when it isn’t glowing is pretty bad.

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2940 days

#8 posted 06-11-2013 03:24 AM

Taunton has a web site that I wrote a couple of responses on. People would write in an you answer to try to help them. They published my answers in Fine Woodworking and gave someone else credit for it. If you put anything out there beware of Taunton. I no longer subscribe to their magazines.

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2738 posts in 2841 days

#9 posted 06-11-2013 03:48 AM

What roger said. I seldom base buying decisions on manufacturer website reviews.
Amazon is a good source. Put your review there and it will be heard.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

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Jeremy Greiner

568 posts in 3036 days

#10 posted 06-11-2013 03:52 AM

I always check reviews on Amazon even when purchasing locally (which I do often enough). The downside as stated by Roger you do have too read the reviews. Several things I always keep in mind. People always complain louder than praise. Some people don’t understand that manufacturing isn’t perfect and sometimes you get a broken item, or an item that breaks soon after purchase. If it was broke, or easily broke and was replaced with little fuss and the new unit works (a lot of people don’t post back that there new unit works) I don’t see any problem. The last thing to keep in mind is when people give a 1 star review because the $100 item doesn’t work as well as a $500 item. This part always bugs me, I expect something I pay for to work within the parameters of reasonable use for the item. However some people expect festool performance from harbor freight and give the item a bad review because of it.


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

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2099 posts in 2453 days

#11 posted 06-11-2013 05:29 AM

Tauton is into volume now, not quality. They don’t really care what they sell, as long as they sell lots of it. Pity, as back when they started they were top drawer. Now they are just a crappy particle board drawer with a hardboard bottom. If they had any honour, they would remove the dovetail symbol from the cover of FWW (and change its name to VWW = Volume Woodworking).

-- Dwight - "Free legal advice available - contact Dewey, Cheetam & Howe""

View Tennessee's profile


2895 posts in 2779 days

#12 posted 06-11-2013 05:14 PM

You would be surprised how many companies do this.
Most of the major musical instrument online sites routinely censor anything less than four stars. Sporting goods companies do the same thing.

I also look to Amazon for decent reviews. I often just look at the 3 star or less reviews, to see if there is a pattern of one or two problems, like the same component not working, or some feature that is not as advertised.

Also, ironically, Harbor Freight used to be good about posting, but I’ve had a couple recently rejected for poor reviews, and I had two rejected by Home Depot in the last year for the same reasons, poor quality that I was reviewing on.
Lowes, on the other hand, seems a little better. I recently had an outdoor timer go belly up in a few days from Lowes, and when I posted, if realized that if I had taken the time to read all the people who complained about that timer, I would have never bought it. And they did post mine.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

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2099 posts in 2453 days

#13 posted 06-11-2013 06:48 PM

Yup, Amazon reviews are really useful. I do the same as Paul.

-- Dwight - "Free legal advice available - contact Dewey, Cheetam & Howe""

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1564 posts in 3508 days

#14 posted 06-11-2013 06:48 PM

Hmmm, I don’t know why that surprises me with tauton. Or that many other companies do it too. I guess because I see it in writing on this forum kind of brought it to reality that it is as widespread as it is.
Like others, I go to Amazon to look at reviews. In my case, I never look at 1 star or 5 star ratings. The 5 star ratings seem to be ‘ringers’ and the 1 star ones are usually people who didn’t know what they were buying or rated it that way because of a failure.
The other site is go to is Barnes and Nobel.
I have never gone on the tauton site for reviews. And after reading this thread, I will not go there for reviews either. I will probably avoid much of their printed book materials unless I see good reviews elsewhere.

Now on the magazine front that is a different story. Other than the FWW mag I get, any other seasonal or special magazines I buy are done because I looked through them and found enough in the way of articles that I wanted to buy them.

Thanks Jorge for posting this.

-- I'm not clumsy.. It's just the floor hates me, the tables and chairs are bullies, the wall gets in the way AAANNNDDD table saws BITE my fingers!!!.. - Mike -

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Mainiac Matt

8719 posts in 2593 days

#15 posted 06-11-2013 07:06 PM

I went through a long and drawn out saga over returning a camera I purchased on-line, that turned out to be a gray market camera (meant for sale in Hong Kong and not eligible for U.S. warranty service).

The retailer had a ton of rave reviews at

Well it turns out that after you place your order they call you up and offer to include some cheesy accessory with your order for free, if you will leave them a good review. So many of these “rave” reviews were from people who hadn’t even received their order yet. And it also turns out that it’s very difficult to distinguish gray market cameras from those authorized for sale in the U.S.

Turns out the bad reviews were there, but they were buried deep in the list.

Lesson learned? Always read the 1-star reviews.

And 5-stars to BankAmerica, who supported me 100% and got my money back.

-- Matt -- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

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