Member Reviews

This delightful and giftable coffee table book compiles absurd one-star reviews of famous landmarks, both natural and man-made. Lowery introduces the concept through his own experience of stumbling upon these reviews during travel research, highlighting the humorous absurdity of critiques like giving Mt. Everest one star for not allowing driving up the mountain. With charming illustrations accompanying each entry, the book features 87 places and their real one-star reviews, offering a quick, breezy read that will entertain both owners and guests alike.

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Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for granting me free access to the advanced digital copy of this book.

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Oh, dear readers, grab your sense of humor and buckle up for the most side-splitting journey into travel absurdity with Mike Lowery's "One Star Wonders". This book is not just a laugh riot; it's a comedic odyssey through the world's greatest places, as seen through the eyes of the world's most bewildered travelers.

The synopsis promises a fresh perspective on travel reviews, and boy, does it deliver! Move over, five-star accolades; it's time for the underappreciated art of one-star critiques. From being "too cold" under the Northern Lights to the mind-boggling disappointment of not finding a king or queen in the Palace of Versailles, these reviews are a treasure trove of human quirks, entitlement, and expectations gone hilariously awry.

Lowery's illustrations are the secret sauce that turns this book from amusing to downright uproarious. His signature style brings these absurd complaints to life, and you'll find yourself chuckling at the sheer audacity of some travelers. It's a visual feast of wit and whimsy that adds an extra layer of brilliance to the already fantastic concept.

Now, let's talk about the humor. This book had me in stitches from start to finish. I mean, who knew travel reviews could be this entertaining? Reading it aloud to a friend became a marathon of laughter, and we even had to take breaks to recover from our fits of giggles.
The decision to round it up from a 1-star to a 5-star review? Pure genius, and the perfect punny homage to the theme.

And... Always remember... "You can't drive up Mount Everest, no matter how hard you try!"!! It's nuggets of wisdom like this that make "One Star Wonders" not just a comedy goldmine but also a source of quirky travel trivia.

In conclusion, if you're in need of a book that will make you snort with laughter, lift your spirits, and perhaps make you question humanity's grasp on reality, "One Star Wonders" is your ticket to a five-star comedic adventure.
Mike Lowery, take a bow, and thank you for turning travel reviews into the belly laughs we never knew we needed. 🌟📚😂

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I actually enjoy reading 1 star reviews of popular books and movies. They're usually pretty entertaining and/or ridiculous. This was a book full of 1 star reviews of popular tourist locations and I loved it. The reviews are paired with an illustration page that is also pretty funny. I think this book would make a great unique gift.

Thank you to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for providing me a digital review copy for my honest thoughts.

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Funny coffee table book! You probably wouldn’t use this book for trip planning, but do use it if you’re in need of a chuckle.

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As someone who really enjoys ridiculous reviews ("The beach was too sandy"), I found this...a little lacking.

Some of them are truly funny, like the New Orleans ghost tours that had no hauntings. But these get a touch monotonous after time. Mike's aim was to feature the great wonders of the world, places I genuinely want to visit some day. And these made me want to visit them even more. But maybe the problem is that the really funny ridiculous reviews are for less prestigious locals, and I am expecting too much.

Still a great bucket list book for finding the places you want to visit, even if their wifi is lacking.

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Thanks to Netgalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for the ARC of this!

This was super fun and fast! It’s hilarious how people seem to not understand how to review, especially a place. The art was fun.

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A funny book examining the follies of online reviewing and the strange ways in which people judge their experiences. One Star Wonders made me giggle and brought a smile to my face. I would recommend it for anyone who wants to indulge in the silliness of other human beings.

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This short, coffee table book is a compilation of some of the world’s greatest places and a one-star review that someone left for them. The book starts with a quick summary of why the author was inspired to create this book, and the five categories that one-star reviews typically fall under. Then each page has an illustration of the place with the one-star review included under it.

I really like the idea of this book. I tend to do research before going somewhere, so I’m quite familiar with some of the absurd reviews that people leave for places. I enjoyed the artist’s simple yet engaging illustrations, and the reviews certainly didn’t disappoint. The reviews range from people being unimpressed with nature to upset that ancient stone floors are uneven. One of my favorite reviews recommends just checking out photos on the internet and saving your money. I do wish that one or two additional one-star reviews had been included for each place, as there’s no shortage of absurd reviews!

This was a fun coffee table book that could make a good gift or an entertaining quick read for your guests (or a bathroom book – do people still do those?). My thanks to NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing for allowing me to read this book. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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I am a planner who heavily relies on reviews before confirming anything, especially if the payments are non-refundable.
This particular book is not even a full-length one - if it was fiction, it would probably be called a novella. Despite that, it needs its own full-length review.
The author's introduction is a must to better understand what one is getting into. It is a collection of one-star ratings of places in the world. I must admit at this point that I have occasionally seen the reviews for public places, just to see if something catches my eye about the 'must-see'ness of the place. I have come across a few with similar tones to the ones in the book.
Each site/review comes with a caricature (in a style that I think suits the tone) and the review itself. They are mostly single lines ones and serve as punch lines.
I would love to have this one hand to just randomly hand out to people when they want a breather. I highly recommend dipping into this book. If the concept appeals to you, the book definitely will.
I received an ARC thanks to Netgalley and the publishers but the review is entirely based on my own reading experience.

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Thanks to NetGalley and to Andrews McMeel Publishing for the eARC. My opinions are my own.

This is such a fun, giftable, coffee table-esque book.

Do you follow @goodreads_reviews on Instagram? It’s an account that collates funny and ridiculous one-star book reviews from GoodReads. That’s basically what this book is except it’s about famous landmarks, natural and man-made, and ridiculous one-star reviews about them.

In the introduction, Lowery talks about how he always checks the reviews for places that he intends to visit during his travels, but generally the 4 and 5-star reviews. And then he started reading the 1-star reviews. And sometimes they are about valid issues with maybe a tour guide or something, but this book is about the 1-star reviews that are given to something like the Grand Canyon itself!

The book covers 87 places, each illustrated by the author, with one real 1-star review apiece. For example, someone gave Mt. Everest 1 star because they wouldn’t let this person drive up the mountain!

The illustrations are charming and the reviews are sadly, hilarious. Quick and breezy, it’s something you can leave on your coffee table and you and your guests will be delighted to flip through this.

“One Star Wonders” is out now!!

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Inspired by an actual review of the venerable Taj Mahal - "WIFI IS AWFUL! ONE STAR." - the author decided to "rate" other popular landmarks. This is a collection of his cartoons, and mock one star reviews of some favorite travel destinations scattered all over the world.

Here the entire continent of Antarctica receives one star as the visitor "Only had an hour for lunch." The Eiffel Tower is dinged because it "doesn't do anything." Rude animals ruin the experience of the Serengeti National Park, and the breathtaking Victoria Falls simply has "Too much water."

And, you can forget about Mount Everest . . .
"They don't let you drive up. I tried."

My favorite? Don't bother visiting the Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland. "The visitor center is soulless. Well, I certainly won't be going there!

I enjoyed this, and I wanted more. At under a hundred pages, the book seems slight for the price, but there are plenty of chuckles to be had so it may be worth it to you.

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So far, the book I've laughed at most in 2023. That said, it is a slight and slender gift book type of thing – but one you would keep on some random shelf for perusing every few years, if you had a copy, like the suicidal bunnies and that green collection of postcard images of yore. This has the aim of highlighting the stupid, asinine and daft in the world of one-star travel reviews – yes, some people hit rock bottom on the Internet and create a found poem that they would like to perform for you now; this chap has one sting from a stinging review each page with an image of the potential critic looking glum in front of whatever it was they found the need to rail against.

So the Great Barrier Reef gets one stars as it was not a calm day, Machu Picchu is a fake, and someone had a startling sexual experience in the Redwood National Park. I think, anyway. People go to the old places and find them, well, old, they judge an experience involving thousands on the behaviour of one person (Route 66 the worst victim of this), and they fail to register their own limitations and expectations, either before the trip or before the clicking send. Some bad reviews are based on trips made under duress, or shortened by babies, some leave you begging for more (why can't we go to the Sacre Coeur?!; and the Oktoberfest review can be read two ways), some are written even though the writer didn't actually get to see the blessed thing anyway.

Like I say, slender, but with such a high hit rate of laughs, this is still one to consider. Certainly not one star from me.

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I received a copy of this book through Netgalley. This is my honest review.

I'm sure we have all seen some reviews that just leave us scratching our heads. Well, this is a book full of those. For instance, someone apparently rated Munich's Oktoberfest 1 star because there's public drinking. As someone who lived in Germany for seven years (although we never attended Oktoberfest while there) I have to wonder what they were expecting from a festival that is known for being focused around beer. Drinking beer is literally why you go to Oktoberfest. And while I'm not as familiar with the other locations or events featured in this book as I am with Oktoberfest, most of them also left me wanting to reach through the book to strangle the person leaving the ridiculous review.

The illustrations were a nice touch, and definitely necessary for no longer than most of the featured reviews were. It was a very quick read, but would make a fabulous coffee table book if that's something that's still a thing. I'm not going to lie, a part of me really wants to rate this book 1 star because this author didn't actually write anything, he just took other people's words and put them in a book with some pictures he drew. But the selected reviews made me laugh at how stupid some people are (which I'm fairly certain was the goal), so I'm going to give this book 3.98 out of 5 stars.

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I accessed a digital review copy of this book from the publisher.
The book is a collection of reviews paired with illustrations. Not all of the reviews were chosen for humor.

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Delightful! I laughed out loud multiple times and the illustrations are charming. Can be read in one sitting.

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I receiveI this ARC thanks to Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Before I rate this book I must pose a question. How does a rough ocean floor make one vomit?

Other than that, I greatly enjoyed the book. It was almost like traveling with my retired parents. Luckly, they do not leave reviews. I

Amusing and the illustrations are fun to look at.

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▪️ This is a book (illustrated by the author) that shares some one-star ratings based on real reviews for places like the Grand Canyon, the Palace of Versailles, Machu Picchu, the Northern Lights, and more of our world’s beautiful landmarks. The illustrations will tickle your funny bone as much as the reviews do!

▪️ This is the perfect coffee table book! Or a perfect bathroom book! Or the perfect gift book for a traveler! Or just an amazing way to see how completely ridiculous some human beings can be!

▪️ It is a quick, fun read that will have you eye-rolling and laughing in equal measure. There are a couple of example pages in my slides above so be sure to check them out.

Thank you @Netgalley and @andrewsmcmeel for an eARC of this book, which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.

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This is a sweet little book with lovely fun illustrations

I think it would be a nice stocking filler for someone who travels, or someone who's a bit grumpy but you like the anyway!

I've deducted 1 star as I'm not sure you'd want to pay full price for it, it's a fun gift book but it took me about 5 minutes to flick through. I'm not sure you'd want to go back for a second read, so it feels like quite a disposable book

I received an advance copy for free from NetGalley, on the expectation that I would provide an honest review.

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One star! Just kidding, just kidding. Mike Lowery’s “One Star Wonders: The Worst Reviews of the World’s Greatest Places” is a fun, quick read. The author and artist shares his favorite one star reviews of landmarks that he’s found and provides whimsical illustrations of the places. Some of the reviews were truly funny, but I wish the quotes were longer than one or two lines to show how truly unhinged people and their opinions can be. This would make a fun gift for a loved one who enjoys traveling or leaving online reviews.

Thank you to Andrews McMeel Publishing and NetGalley for an advance reader copy in the exchange for an honest review. My review was posted on June 13, 2023 to Goodreads here:

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