Wednesday, June 5, 2019

The Art of Writing a Review #RomanceGems

So, you’ve read a great book lately have you? Maybe even found yourself a new “keeper” author. Can’t wait for that next great read?

Like any other entertainment professional, authors need encouragement. Validation over and above the initial sale. Where do we get that much-needed encouragement? Through an honest review.

Tips for leaving a review:

Most importantly, a review can be short. Don’t feel like you have to recap the entire book. That’s the sole purpose of the posted blurb. Two to three sentences outlining your reaction is more than enough. And, of course, set the ‘star’ ranking.

Example: I usually don't care for secret baby stories, but this one was different. Cody was the smartest, cutest thing ever. Sometimes adults are so stupidly blind, but that's what makes love grand! Great story. ~ 5-star Amazon Review

If you do choose to write a longer review, please don’t post spoilers. This is especially true when reviewing romantic suspense or cozy mysteries.

Place your review on bookstore sites, e.g., Amazon, Barnes & Noble, as well as on Goodreads (if you are a member). You can copy and paste the same review everywhere.
Attribute and disclaim. If you received the book from either the author or the publisher, say so using a simple statement: “This book was a gift in exchange for an honest review.” If you use NetGalley or another review service, please also attribute the site: “ARC received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.”

Bloggers get your name and site out there. If you are a book blogger, please post your review everywhere and remember to link your blog site. It’s a great way to bring new people to your work.

If you are friends/follow the author on social media, please post a link to your review and tag the author. It not only shows your commitment to support authors, but it also gives the author a chance to share and celebrate.

Exactly how important are reviews?

In addition to giving the author an often much needed morale boost, posting on influential sites such as Amazon also affect the author’s placement among the site’s metrics. Just remember: they’re not spying on you or your reviews, they’re just counting the author’s promotional marbles!

Reviews are also important when an author is shopping for a new publisher or an agent. Having few or no reviews is even worse than having bad ones. At least the bad ones show that someone was reading the author’s work.

For the reader, it’s a win-win in terms of being offered the opportunity to review ARCs. Most authors gladly share a limited number of books with those readers who take the time to read and post a review.

The majority of authors don’t get rich with their writing. They give up hours of their precious time with family, they forego sleep, in order to produce the best book they can write. All they ask in return (whether you’ve purchased the book or received it for free) is a review. Please consider writing one today.
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Don't forget to check out this month's fantastic contest and giveaway. You'll find all the details on the Monthly Giveaway page. Best of luck to all who enter!

See you again next month.



  1. I know for a lot of folks, Amazon is the most popular source for ebooks. But how important is .ca versus .com for authors? I can't write a review on the American site because I haven't spent 50.00 on there yet. But I can write the review on the Canadian site. However, I switched my Kindle bookstore to the American site because it saves me an extra step of having to switch dot-com links to dot-ca! I also don't use the Canadian audible either. It's quite limiting. So for now, I stick with goodreads and sometimes BookBub.

    1. It's challenging for Canadian customers, for sure. I've never switched to .ca because I want my reviews on the US site. However, here's something that I, personally would love to get. The knowledge that you've posted a review on .ca...and permission to use a quote from the review on my US page. There are places on the book's page where I can add reviews. I think it's called editorial reviews. If you're also a blogger, that's good to know and you'll get attribution. I also, love to put quotes from reviews inside the book right before Chapter 1 so that readers can have easy examples of quick reviews. So let the writer know you've written a review...we can use them in other ways that are helpful!

  2. Reviews are definitely gold, aren't they? I admit to being incredibly lax about leaving them, and I definitely should know better.

    1. The beauty of BB reviews is that you can tick boxes that apply and give a rating, Liz.And they don't take reviews down which is refreshing.

  3. Thanks, for showing how simple it can be to leave a review. I try to at least rate a book on Goodreads. I usually only read books I like so I give a good rating.

  4. Reviews are absolutely great and we need them. But perhaps you should mention not to pull a book apart because it isn't something you like reading. Like saying a book had too much sex when the cover obviously shows it's steamy. Or that you hate cowboys when there's a cowboy on the cover or mentioned in the blurb. Common sense!

  5. Reviews are also necessary in order to use certain advertising platforms. There is no such thing as too many reviews. Well done, Nancy.

  6. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this! I always leave a review for the books I love, because it is FUN to talk about them. It's harder to leave a review for a book that was lukewarm, but I always try to. Authors need to hear what readers think. I have had a few book clubs discuss my books, and what they get out of my stories is sometimes very different than what I intended. It's actually pretty cool to hear.

  7. Grrr, I hate Amazon dot com. I left reviews for a couple of books that were never published. And I spend real money on the site, just not amounting to $50 in the last 6 months (but I do spend more money when I go to the US). Some reviews go through, others don't. It's annoyingly annoying

  8. Very well said. I'd add that you can't buy advertisement at some places because of lack of reviews.

  9. Hey, Nancy. Love the cartoons! Reviews are so important to authors. We indie authors helped build Amazon so it's especially disheartening that they give us so little support. Their policy of removing reviews seems so arbitrary.

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