Do Read-and-Review Programs Really Work?

Please review my bookBy L.A. Lewandowski, Laurie Boris & Lynne Cantwell

As authors, we all know book reviews are important for many reasons. They are also critical to readers when they visit our book’s page. There are many ways to go about getting reviews, and read-and-review programs are one of them. These programs are technically not the same as getting a paid review. A paid review means a reader (or a publication) is receiving payment specifically to review your book. Yes, an author participating in a read-and-review program might be charged a fee, but that’s generally for the website’s administrative services. A read-and-review program offers readers a free copy of your book in exchange for an honest review, and they require that the reviewer include a statement to that effect in the review they post. In the case of Story Cartel, a little extra incentive is provided, but that’s as a giveaway prize for readers who participate in the program—not direct payment for services. Continue reading “Do Read-and-Review Programs Really Work?”

The Story Cartel Experience

Story Cartel has been around for less than a year, so it’s not surprising that many people may not have heard of it. It’s developed a unique symbiotic system of exchanging free books for book reviews prompted by several stages of giveaways. According to their website:

“Story Cartel is full of books that are read and discovered by people like you. Since October 2012, over 10,000 readers have downloaded and read over 100 books, generating more than 1,700 reviews on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, and blogs. Thousands of readers are connecting with new authors right now.”

It works like this. An author uploads an e-book with all the usual accoutrements: title, book cover, blurb, sales link. Story Cartel offers the e-book for free downloads for a limited time, usually 20 days. Anyone willing to review the book posts their reviews and registers with Story Cartel and becomes eligible for one of three gifts from the author (author’s pick): three $10 Amazon gift certificates (1 per winner), five physical books mailed out to winners, or an e-reader. Continue reading “The Story Cartel Experience”

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