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A question for book bloggers, book reviewers, and authors

So yesterday there was a tweet thread from a wonderful book blogger/reviewer who received an email from an author stating this:  I screen shotted it so you could see the actual tweet thread)

This struck me wrong on so many levels that my head actually hurt. Talk about elitist. Now, I recognize the author ( to play Devil’s advocate here) is probably an indie author who has to pay for her books and wants to make money. If she gives out arcs that don’t have the ROI in terms of a “good” review or no review at all, she probably feels she is losing money.

You know what? Too bad, Madame Author.

If you don’t want to take the chance that you will get anything less than 5 stars, then you’d better write a 10 star novel. My guess? Not gonna happen.

Did you ever think the people who aren’t leaving reviews are trying to spare your feelings? That maybe your books are so horrible they feel bad for you and don’t want to leave bad reviews for fear of hurting your feelings? Or that maybe they couldn’t finish your lousy book and that’s why they didn’t leave a review??’

I get lousy reviews when I put up arcs, too. All authors do, even the ones who have publishing contracts with major houses and rake in oodles of cash every year. Every single person on the planet has an opinion and not everyone who reads your book is going to adore it. To state categorically that if you, as a book reviewer, don’t leave a high review you will be removed from further arcs is tantamount to bullying in my book, and you know what? I would never read an author’s work who stated something like that.

I use Booksprout.co and Netgalley for my arc reviews. On Netgalley, some of the reviewers can be downright mean spirited, but that’s the nature of the game. Recently, I realized that several people who requested arcs on Booksprout never left reviews and I wondered why, so for my new set of arcs I put up a statement that said, if you don’t leave a review I won’t authorize further books for you. I immediately took that statement down because I realized what I’ve said above. Maybe the people who didn’t leave reviews didn’t like the book and instead of giving a low review, they simply didn’t write one. Or maybe they haven’t gotten to the book yet since everyone reads at a different speed. Whatever the reason, I knew right away that was the wrong thing to say, so I took the statement down.

Too bad the author of the above statement didn’t think as quick as I did.

So I have a question for anyone reading this who reviews books or blogs about them: would you continue to read an author who said something as blatant as the above mentioned author did? What are your feelings about her/his statement? For authors, do you think the author had a valid point to stating what she did, and if so, why?

Inquiring minds ( okay mine! ) want to know.

Until next time ~ Peg

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