In every purchase we made either online (from amazon, Kobo, nook, or any online retailer). Or offline (from book shop or Walmart). We are always attracted to the reviews. Even if we admit it or not, and sometimes we ignored it, but in many cases it plays a vital rule in our decision of purchasing the item or not. And books are no exception.
As an author or a writer both need their writings or books to be evaluated. Either for self feedback or to enhance the marketing of their item. Book reviews plays a vital rule in book marketing strategy. Specially if you have a self published book. The reviews will make the book looks more professional, and also it may be give the buyer a brief idea of what is this book about or whether they liked it or not.
So after this introduction, let us dig deep and see what we need to make your book ready for review?
Before submitting your book for review.
What I will say next looks obvious, however many authors ignore it, And will play an important part in getting good book reviews or not.
Before submitting your book for a review. Always keep in mind the first impression is very important. So the first reviews you get for your book will have a huge impact on the selling of the book. Either we like it or not. In spite of your book price tag.
So what to check for before submitting your book for review?
1- Book cover:
Even you believe in not judging the books by its cover, but many people do. So make sure your book cover design is attractive. The name and the picture both clear and well designed.
2- Your book must be in a good format:
To keep the reader focus on your great story and not distracted by such a simple issue.
3-Your book must be well edited and spell checked:
If you are a self published author, make sure to hire a professional editor. Always keep in mind if you made a masterpiece with many spelling or grammar errors. This will destroy your book reputation in no time. I know hiring an editor is expensive but every penny spent on him/her worth it.
Where to submit your book for a professional review?
There are many which provide a professional review for indie authors or traditionally published authors. Some of them will be tough so keep in mind that first impressions of your book are very important.
1- Trade publication reviews:
Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and Indie Reader.
2- Consumer publications reviews:
Local news papers and city magazines.
3- Non-professional reader reviews:
These reviews written by book readers. And are the same which you will find them on amazon, Kobo or goodreads. The easiest way is to get these reviews is to ask your family and your friends to submit a review for your book there after reading it. But keep in mind as their opinion is not always honest.
For other readers you can include a link on the last page of your book to leave a review. Also you can give a free or discounted book as an exchange for their review later (this can be used if you have an email list). By law the reviewer should be declare that they receive a free book as an exchange for their review. And Just be aware that Amazon officially forbids authors to incentive readers for reviews. So if you want to do it do not advertise it on your website or Facebook page. As long as you keep it for your email exchange list Amazon aren’t privy to, you will be fine.
You can use goodreads also, which have a giveaway system that you can use it for this purpose (Another example is Instafreebie).
4- Book blogger reviews:
There are many book bloggers out there. Some of them charge and others not. So you have to be clear with them from the beginning which services they provide, and whether they do it for free, a donation or a small charge.
5- Paid book reviews: (I provide this service here)
This type of review is controversial. As some people think all the paid reviews are like buying a 5 star review. And this is not ethical and will mislead the people who read the review. In my humble opinion, they are right. But well this depend on the author himself, as not all the paid reviews are 5 stars review, but unfortunately many are. You can find many of these services on fiverr even if it is prohibited by amazon and by law. But if you want a person to criticize your book honestly then you have to search for it and make sure his/her service is ethical.
Ok, How it is ethical at the end it was paid?
Well the answer is simple. You remember submitting your book for review to Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and Indie Reader. Well this is a paid review paid directly by you or by the publisher, but these are honest and criticize for your book ( not a guaranteed 5 star review). So if you find a free lance how provide this service then go with it. Since this will save you money ,time and at will give you the same opinion which will you get from the previous mentioned sites. So now ask yourself the same question, Is it ethical or not ? If Yes then check here.
Now How to make bad book review works for you?
The answer is simple, take it shamelessly, do not take it personally and make sure you learned from it. Not all the reviews will help you. Also expect that you will get a bad book review just because of the book subject , or how it handles a problem. So always trust yourself and try to learn. And always be ethical in getting book reviews.
Always keep in mind, if someone said that your book is a crab. It is his/her personal opinion only. And it does not mean your book is a crab.