Justified indignation or sour grapes! You can't open facebook or goodreads these days without seeing discussions about reviews? Do you need them to sell books? How can you get them? How do you track down and kill the one star reviewers.
I am motivated to discuss them myself this week as I have just had the longest review ever - of over 100 reviews (for my book, Deadly Election). I was so happy with it that I have chosen to reproduce it here. Partly because it is a nice review, but also for the reviewers incisive remarks on other matters. As usual - there're amusing animal pics at the end - what respected literary blog would be without them!
Take the short quiz at the end of the Blog and WIN a SIGNED PAPERBACK COPY of my BOOK! - I will put the correct entries n my fedora (google it!) and announce the winner on next weeks blog
When I started marketing my book a million years ago in 2012 everything I read said I needed reviews to boost sales.
It was the right advice, at the time, and may still be the right advice now. The problem now is that the currency of reviews has been greatly devalued - at both ends of the scale. There are many books launched now daily, with 5* star reviews appearing almost immediately. The suspicion must be that they are all written by friends or relative, who may or may not have even read the book. Or by the author himself through multiple accounts. You can even buy five star review on line very cheaply (see fiverr.com). At the other end of the scale there are the nasty one star reviews. It is one thing to give a negative review of a book if you can justify your comments, but many one star reviews now are just plain nasty, sometimes personal, and many authors have now suffered from a spate of one star reviews by one vindictive person using many accounts. Luckily, both of these tactics can be quite easily spotted by an experienced reader, but I wonder what real effects they have on the occasional shopper looking for a good read. I think the lesson to be learned is that reviews have to be earned, and obtained in ethical ways. It is perfectly fair to ask someone to review your book - with no strings attached. It takes a lot of work, but is worth it in the end. 30 reviews with an average of four stars or more - a couple of negative ones included, will give a real and genuine feel to an authors book, whereas 100 glowing 5 star reviews will not impress anyone anymore. The review I print below was written by someone who I do not know. He kindly offered to review my book - for no reward - when I asked for reviewers on Twitter. You will be lucky to find reviewers who will take the time and effort over your book that Eric did. Thank you Eric!
Erik Nelson's review Jan 20, 2014
5 of 5 stars
Recommended for: Anyone
I own a copy, read count: 1
What can we say about politics? Let me rephrase that question by asking; what can we say about American politics? Let me rephrase that question again by asking; what can't we say about American politics? Before I go any further, let me just assure you all that I am not here to discuss the current events in Government. Anyway, I believe that we ( Conservatives, Liberals, Libertarians and Progressives) can agree that politics is a dangerous career to pursue. I don't think I have to explain the details to my claim. However, politics can serve many gods. One field that it serves well in is the entertainment field.
I'm not just talking about Comedy movies or "Saturday Night Live", I'm also including all genres and the different forms of entertainment. One of those different forms of entertainment is a book called "Deadly Election" by Arthur Crandon. His story actually doesn't cover American politics. His story is set in the political field of the Philippine Islands. But the battles of American politics are very similar. The story begins with three young men meeting with their Senator; Enrique Consuelo who is also running for President. They meet with him because they discovered Spanish doubloons in a cave where politically related crimes occurred many years ago. Consuelo, being a typical politician ( in other words, fully corrupted) orders his "staff" to kill the men so he can keep the treasure for himself. But Consuelo just might meet karma when an eyewitness to the murders threatens to expose Consuelo for who he really is. Consuelo thinks that he can have his "staff" easily take him down but once he escapes their grasp and takes them through a beyond wild goose chase, Consuelo realizes that he is probably facing a greater enemy that his political opponent.
"Deadly Election" is the story of a truly deadly election where people not only die but where people go through many mental stages that can easily hurt them physically. Had it just been for the typical political atmosphere in the story, it would probably just be a fictional repeat of what we see on the news. But Arthur Crandon added his own tone to the story. He made it into a political thriller. As I said before, politics serves entertainment well and that combining with Arthur Crandon's talent of entertainment giving, this book is a must read from beginning to end. Not only is it entertaining but it's also informative. I don't know if that was Crandon's intention to inform us a little but here's why I think it's informative; it's a wake up call. It's a wake up call to all of those people who thinks that politicians are one-hundred percent clean and have no skeletons in the closest. In other words, read this book and you'll be entertained while being given the harsh reality of a typical politician.
My experiences in the Philippines helped me to write Deadly Election
- it reveals the Lawlessness, the Greed, the Corruption and the unfairness that exists to this day in this outwardly idyllic country. It's a gripping novel with twists, turns, lust and intrigue. I hope you will enjoy it
Other books by Arthur Crandon that you may find helpful in your book marketing journey......
Send the answers to the email contact below for a chance to win (the answers can be found in Eric's review above).
1. How many young men meet with the Senator?
2. Does the book cover American Politics?
3. What does the Senator want to keep for himself?-
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Meet the author
Arthur Crandon is a lawyer, the boring office kind, not the exciting (and much better paid) courtroom type. He worked as a solicitor for a while before embarking on an interesting life overseas. He has spent most of his time in recent years in South East Asia, more recently in Hong Kong. Before that, Arthur lived and worked in the Philippine Islands.
He loves to fish, and play the piano – but spends most of his time writing, eating, drinking and sleeping
– usually, but not always, in that order.
His first book, Deadly Election, draws on his strange imagination and his
experiences, together with those of others, in a land that, beneath a veneer of civilisation, operates like the Wild West and is very
dangerous to innocent and gullible foreigners.
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My thriller - Deadly Election - is now on sale at Amazon. Anyone who buys the book and leaves a review will get a signed paperback. Please subscribe to my blog and newsletter here