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How to get rave reviews for terrible books, the Matt Forney way

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This spring, the pseudonymous “Ferdinand Bardamu” of the defunct manosphere blog In Mala Fide self-published a book/ebook collecting together his, er, best posts from that terrible, terrible blog. I actually bought a copy of the ebook — for research — and it is awful. Somehow putting Bardamu’s posts in book form makes even more clear how puerile — and how badly written — they really are.

But there are evidently some people out there who disagree. Indeed, I recently ran across a review of the book that could not have been more glowing had it been written by the author himself:

Three Years of Hate is an invaluable, priceless book not merely because it’s well-written, entertaining and thought-provoking. It’s worth reading because it’s a piece of history. It’s a record of one of the most influential and important thinkers of our times. Decades from now, when the current dystopia is naught but a bad memory, Ferdinand Bardamu will be remembered as one of the architects of its fall.

Elsewhere in the review, which appeared on the site Alternative Right in March of this year, the execrable Bardamu is described as

one of the best writers of modern times (and no, that is not hyperbole)

He’s lauded for his “tenacity and courage”;  his prose is said to

lurch …  and crackle .. like lightning, grabbing you by the back of your neck and shoving you face-first into the action.

In the end, the reviewer concludes that Bardamu had

An influence far greater—and far more of a force for good in the world—than the frauds who attacked him.

Frauds, huh? That’s an interesting way to close out his review, given that the person writing it was none other than … the odious Matt Forney.

Yes, that’s right, the guy who — a month or so later — revealed to the world that HE WAS “FERDINAND BARDAMU.”

If you’re relying on glowing reviews to sell your book, and  your book is a piece of crap, you might as well write the glowing reviews yourself, huh?

I suppose Forney’s explanation would be that it was all a big joke, and that by then “everyone knew” that Forney and Bardamu were one and the same, but that’s not true, and he didn’t confirm that fact for more than another month in any case.

I can’t remember exactly where I ran across a reference to theis ingenious little bit of self-boosterism, but I think it was while reading back through some old posts on the always interesting blog Roosh & Me: An Old Feminist Looks at the New Misogynist, by  Cinzia La Strega. who is an occasional commenter over here on Man Boobz.

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Posted on September 14, 2013, in are these guys 12 years old?, grandiosity, hate, hypocrisy, lying liars, matt forney, misogyny, PUA and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 67 Comments.

  1. *reads those reviews and laughs heartily* If I was a better writer I could mock something like that up for David but unlike with this guy, David would deserve it as he is a talented writer and blogger.

  2. My first comment here. I’m following this blog since about a month. Keep up the work, Mr. Futrelle!

    I still don’t know if I should laugh at or cry about these people.

  3. An excellent window into the vile narcissism shared by many MRM-types. That he disowned his followers when revealing himself is absolutely hilarious. How should he know they are merely his reflection? He would have to think critically of his views, and that would be just criminal.

  4. A newb! ATTACK!!

    With matching bath towels! One Welcome Package for the delurked reminiscience!

    You’ll prolly learn to laugh at them, by laughing with us :)

  5. Reading about misogynists makes me want to be as annoyingly feminine as I can. So, pointers would be appreciated.

    David, do you happen to have that tripe that Bardamu? You know, the one where he said a good slap now and then is useful for keeping chimp women under control? Something along those lines. I’ve run into a couple of idiots on the manosphere and tried to explain that GWW is an abuse apologist, but I can’t find the original text.

  6. :delurks just to wheeeeeeze,snort,wheeeeeze, chuckle,wheeeeeeze again aaaand relurk wheezing:

  7. @reminiscience

    Hi and welcome :D

    @theda bara

    this isn’t your first time delurking right? Cuz your name seems really familiar to me. feel free to laugh at me if I’m wrong.

  8. @Marie

    I pop up every so often!

  9. reminiscience, hi and welcome!

    Theda Bara and Marie, welcome back, good to see you both!

  10. @kittehserf

    Hi :D

    @theda bara

    And since you do pop of every so often, hi again :D (as opposed to welcome or w/e. THis made sense when I was typing it.)

  11. @kittehs
    Ta, hope you are well. I don’t know why but this prompted all the giggles.

  12. @falconer

    I don’t think I have. They’re so cute!

  13. My mom calls my son (who’s on the left) Little Buddha, because he’s fat and always grinning.

  14. And thank you for saying they’re cute!

    Adrian’s tooth is not so lonesome anymore.

  15. @Falconer

    I needed that spontaneous sqeee. Adorable.

  16. Not doing too badly at the moment, Theda, though I had a few medical dramas recently. Sir’s good, of course. :)

  17. Artistry for Feminism and Kittens is an invaluable, priceless blog, not merely because it’s well-written, entertaining, well-written, thought-provoking, and well-written. It’s worth reading because it’s a piece of history, which makes it worth reading and historical. It’s a record of one of the most influential and important thinkers of our times. Decades from now, when the current dystopia is naught but a bad memory, cloudiah and her kitten GIFs will be remembered as one of the architects of its fall.

    (Seriously, click on my nym if you want to see a new post featuring lots of funny kitty GIFs and a philosophical discussion of whether or not humans have intrinsic value.)

  18. BABIES APPEARED WHILE I WAS WRITING THAT COMMENT!!! YAY FOR BABIES.

  19. Oooh ooh are we doing our own reviews getting totally legit praise now?

    Vignettes Across the Veil is a blog of historical and indeed philosophical and theological importance. It will clear the clouds of mistaken thinking from the minds of all who read it, bringing an era of peace and happiness except for the part where everyone’s envious of the King’s knitwear. It will reestablish the importance of feline rule and return society to the perfect state it formerly held.

    cloudiah – a discussion of whether humans have value? I hope it’s from the kitties’ point of view!

  20. I’d join in the reviews praise receiving, but I don’t have a blog. I do have a tumblr, though, but only 10 percent or so of it is actually my content.

  21. @Kittehs

    I’m sure he is! That scamp!

    Off to relurk again but I wish you all cuddles with the baby animal of your choice (I’m rather fond of baby elephants at the moment, just a suggestion) and keep on being your wonderful, flawed but awesome selves!

  22. Praising oneself pseudonymically? It must be the work of a certified genius!

  23. Marie’s tumblr is an important archive of historical thoughts, compiled by one of the greatest thinkers of our time. When the current dystopia is dead and gone, it will remain a great historical artifact as a window into what that dystopia looked like.

    Archives have merit too! (And actually, it’s part of why I pirate the obscure, more copies = more likely to survive)

  24. Baby elephants, eh? How about this little bub at Fort Worth Zoo?

  25. A Voice for Pierre is written and drawn by one of the foremost authors and drawers of our time. The drawings lurch … and crackle .. like lightning, grabbing you by the back of your neck and shoving you face-first into the misogyny, but then swiftly pulling you back out and offering you a bowl of ice cream or a cup of soup, depending on what you’re in the mood for.

    (I’m only pretending to be katz pretending to be someone else to review her own work.)

  26. lane deau – I love this comment in that Scott Adams thread: “You appear to be overlooking the possibility that Scott Adams really IS Scott Adams’ biggest fan.”

    Rather applies to Ferdy Forney, no?

  27. Yay, Argenti gave me my own review :D

    @cloudiah

    The drawings lurch … and crackle .. like lightning, grabbing you by the back of your neck and shoving you face-first into the misogyny, but then swiftly pulling you back out and offering you a bowl of ice cream or a cup of soup, depending on what you’re in the mood for.

    OKay, that’s my favorite part of the reviews so far XD

  28. (I’m only pretending to be katz pretending to be someone else to review her own work.)

    But how do we know you’re not katz pretending to be cloudiah pretending to be katz pretending to be someone else? O_O

  29. My work is awesome because I say it is. Also it has giant robots, post-apocalyptic exorcists, and princesses in a medieval world where the Roman Empire never existed.

    INSTA-PROFIT! CHA CHING!

  30. Grumpycatisagirl is an awe-inspiring visionary prophet who is better and smarter than everyone else. She also has a much more succinct way of saying so than some other people,.

  31. Oh I was just going to do Baaing Tree!

  32. Man Boobz is an irreplaceable, valuable, invaluable, priceless, inestimable, irreplaceable blog not merely because it’s well-written, entertaining, diverting, enjoyable, challenging, and thought-provoking. It’s worth reading because it’s a big, steaming, smelly piece of history. It’s a record of some of the most turd-ridden dreck produced by the dross of humanity, written by one of the most influential, significant, and important collection of kittens & ferrets in a man-suit of our times. Decades from now, when the contemporary dystopia is naught but a corrupt remembrance, David Futrelle will be recalled as one of the draftsmen of its plummetous descent. His tenacity, courage, and uncanny resemblance to a more kittenish Daniel Craig are legendary. His words stagger and reel like zombie Dworkins (or dancing Roosh’s), kidnapping you in a dark blue minivan and tossing you out right in the middle of a Carnival parade in Rio de Janeiro with nothing but a change of clothes, a forged passport, and $5000. This conglomeration of ferrets & kittens wields an influence far greater—and far more of a force for good in the world—than the churlish bigots who attack him. Long after those knaves are gone, his faithful readers will continue to immediately go off topic and plug their own blogs in his comment section, and with truly Futrellian patience, our dark master will indulge their frivolity with kindness and good humor.

  33. Fools! You can’t pretend to be me because you are ALL me.

  34. And cloudiah David the kittens and ferrets win the thread!

  35. Reminds me of this clip. The quality isn’t that great but it was the only clip I could find.

  36. Hellkell is an amazing thinker and the preeminent swearer of her generation, if not all time. She also makes one hell of a dirty martini. TRUTH.

  37. I would like to endorse hellkell’s complete statement, but sadly she has never made a dirty martini for me so I must remain neutral.

  38. Deoridhe is a genius savant – which is even better than an idiot savant because geniuses are better than idiots – who writes a unique blog that captures the gestalt of the common era. Also she comments, like, totally all the time.

    Also… I am so reminded of when Scott Adams made a sock puppet to defend himself on MetaFilter.

  39. Becausescience is one of the most important Manboobz commenters of the 21st century. Becausescience’s posts lurch and crackle, like zombies being struck by lightning. Becausescience’s posts are literally saving the world from zombies.

    – Becausescience

  40. Wait, has anyone ever seen Scott Adams and Forney/Bardamu in the same room? I’m just saying…

  41. So they’re just zombies in a Forney/Bardamu suit in an Adams suit!

  42. He used the word “naught,” for gods’ sake. I mean, come on — naught!?

    And this:..

    “lurch … and crackle .. like lightning, grabbing you by the back of your neck and shoving you face-first into the action.”

    …most would consider to be unpleasant, yes?

  43. I’m getting my angry misogynists mixed up. Was it Forney who was running around the country in some shitty little band writing about his travels across America like that was going to take down feminism? Or was that some other random asshole?

  44. No idea. Forney is Bardamu, that’s all I know.

  45. They’re all turning into a blur except Fidelbogen, because (luckily) nobody else writes quite like him.

  46. who writes a unique blog that captures the gestalt of the common era

    I think this one wins. Pretty much nobody can use “gestalt” without being full of shit.

  47. Even with Fiddly, there’s the problem that he and Roosh look alike.

    I’m starting to think MRAs and PUAs are a failed version of The Flesh.

  48. Neuroticbeagle is one of the most influential and important thinkers of our times by helping the Furrinati reach its full potential. She, along with Kittehserf, was one of the most outspoken and vocal humans to act in support of Cute Creature World Domination. Homo sapiens will never forget how she proclaimed all humans to be equal..ly capable of serving their Furry Overlords. Decades from now, when the current dystopia is naught but a bad memory, Neuroticbeagle will be remembered as one of the architects of its fall. Her unending recognition and support of the Furrinati makes her an influence far greater—and far more of a force for good in the world—than the frauds who attacked her.

  49. Cute Creature World Domination!

    ::applauds::

    ::whistles::

    ::tosses hat in air::

  50. But…but…the MRA double period ellipsis!

    We’ll pretend it’s animal eyes watching their minions?

  51. “We’ll pretend it’s animal eyes watching their minions?”

  52. Oooh, ninjaed! I was going to reply with this.

  53. … though come to think of it, titianblue’s Witchy Kitty pic from earlier would be a great Cat Anger Consequences portrait.

  54. I once unmasked someone doing the same thing – or rather, once a particular artist (I won’t say which field as I don’t want to drop even the tiniest hint) was unmasked as using a pretty distinctive username in an online forum, it became clear that he’d been writing similar third-person eulogies to himself across a large number of sites including Amazon.

    I didn’t do anything about it (I didn’t even send the author a PM advising him that his secret was out) because I thought it was more sad than amusing – unlike Bardamu, this guy actually had some talent, although it unfortunately came with a thoroughly obnoxious personality attached, which may well have been one of the reasons why he had difficulty finding genuinely independent champions. (And in any case, saying that he had “some talent” wouldn’t have been good enough for this guy – he clearly thought of himself as an authentically Godlike genius.)

    Two other real-life examples, this time involving celebrities: the distinguished historian Orlando Figes was caught not merely boosting his own work (a curiously pointless endeavour, since he had justifiably earned many excellent reviews by genuinely disinterested third parties) but excoriating his rivals, two of whom sued him for libel. And to this day, if you type his name into Google, the third and fourth autocomplete options are “Orlando Figes Amazon Scandal” and “Orlando Figes Scandal”.

    More amusingly, Anthony Burgess was once fired from the Yorkshire Evening Post for reviewing one of his own books (published under a pseudonym), which he thought was very unfair, (a) because he sincerely believed that the paper’s literary editor was fully aware that it was his own work, and (b) because, while under the impression that it was an in-joke, he wrote an exaggeratedly bad review!

  55. Michael S. Olsen is a master of time and space and not a drunken bum. He only wears the finest silk garments and not what just seems to be slightly clean. He’s a billionaire and not at all a destitute idiot. He can leap tall buildings in a single bound and does not get winded by taking the elevator. He has a glorious visage and does in no way look like an axemurderers mugshot. Wait… My brain seems to eating itself. Well, we’ll be right back after these commercials.

  56. kittehserf:

    lane deau – I love this comment in that Scott Adams thread: “You appear to be overlooking the possibility that Scott Adams really IS Scott Adams’ biggest fan.”

    Rather applies to Ferdy Forney, no?

    I’d wish he was his ONLY fan!

    LBT:

    My work is awesome because I say it is. Also it has giant robots, post-apocalyptic exorcists, and princesses in a medieval world where the Roman Empire never existed.

    I hope you’re not kidding, because it does sound awesome.

  57. Amazon recently sent me an email asking me how many stars I would give one of my own books and suggesting I write a review. The temptation to do so was almost overwhelming.

  58. I wonder if this person is R. J. Patton?

  59. Buttercup Q. Skullpants

    Ferdinand Bardamu is an anagram of Brain Damned Fraud. Make of that what you will.

    ******

    “In a world where book reviews sound like movie trailers, Buttercup’s most recent Manboobz comment is a rollicking, gritty tour de force. If Reality could ghostwrite Truth’s autobiography, this would be it. A billion years from now, a grateful Milky Way galaxy will remember Buttercup as the lifeform who single-handedly eliminated stupidity from the universe.”

    – Pantscup Q. Scuttlebutt

  60. “Ferdinand Bardamu is an anagram of Brain Damned Fraud. Make of that what you will.”

    Dammnit Buttercup Pantscup, I was enjoying that bowl of cereal!

  61. RE: lane deau

    I hope you’re not kidding, because it does sound awesome.

    I never kid about my writing. It is all true! See for yourself! Cloudiah, Kittehs, and valerian are regulars at my writeathons.

  62. grabbing you by the back of your neck and shoving you face-first into the action

    I could see this making sense in a review for a novel (it’d still be over the top, of course), but a book of rants? What “action” is there?

  63. More amusingly, Anthony Burgess was once fired from the Yorkshire Evening Post for reviewing one of his own books (published under a pseudonym), which he thought was very unfair, (a) because he sincerely believed that the paper’s literary editor was fully aware that it was his own work, and (b) because, while under the impression that it was an in-joke, he wrote an exaggeratedly bad review!

    See, that’s the sort of shenanigans I could get behind.

  64. Ah, the glorious Sprezzatura of Matt Forney:

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