Here's the thing your always going to get horror stories for any device. Some people swear by linksys/cisco others by netgear, other by belkin - I personally had issues with belkin, for the same dollar amount you get better features on other brands - the belkin I had only 2mb nvram, so could not even put 3rd party on it. I was gifted to me - have used it for sons dorm room at school, etc. Not something I would use in my main homesetup.
Any router should work and perform the basic functionality no matter the brand on the front. I use to have an old wired bsr41 or something linksys back when home routers were new. Ran great for years and years - never any issues with it. Then had one of the old B wireless routers from linksys wrt11 or wap11 or something like that - again ran for many years. Then a linksys wrt54g v1 or v2 -- ran for many years. My current wrt54g 4.1 working great - many years old never any issues. Have had multiple flavors of dd-wrt on it, openwrt on it, tomato on it currently - never any issues, and will prob work for many more years. How many years of service do you want out of a $50 item? Kind of wish it would die so would have an excuse to getting something more recent - but it works, so why spend extra money. I don't really need N, it would be nice - but hard to justify replacement when G works
Now netgear I have had nothing but issues with - never my own device though, friends and family. But I wouldn't be my first choice if I was buying one today. But if found it for a good price, had the features I wanted from hardware standpoint - and supported 3rd party. I wouldn't not buy it just because it was branded netgear.
TL;DR -- don't get so hung up on brand names