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10 September 2019

Do you enjoy reading novels? Well then...

Authors take a lot of time and effort to write the novels that you enjoy reading, and, in the case of many indie authors, they spend a lot of money also. For the most part, for little financial reward. 

The J.K. Rowlings of the author world are, believe me, few and far between. Most of the many hundreds (thousands?) of indie authors just about cover their costs of paying editors, cover designers, the company that publishes the book for them... But that is all a part of the job, a job which, for nearly every author, is a labour of love. We write because it is compulsive. We meet our characters, we have their stories in our heads and we have to write them down. Otherwise, those characters haunt us, nagging and nagging until we get their adventures down in print.

Book, Read, Old, Literature, Pages

But why should you write a review?
Good reviews, the five and four-star ones, can help readers make decisions.  Most people read the reviews on Trip Advisor, for instance, before deciding on a hotel. Poor reviews mean 'look elsewhere'. Good, honest reviews can assist a comfortable, pleasant stay. Ditto with books. Genuine praise means a book is (probably) worth reading. 

Add to this, the number of reviews on Amazon help a book's visibility (allegedly, Amazon can be a law unto itself).  If you love a writer's work and want others to share your enjoyment, leaving a review is a brilliant way of making this happen.

Think of it as your good deed for the day!

No professional writer expects all their reviews to be 5* - a 4* is just as much appreciated.
And you don't have to use Amazon! What about Facebook, Twitter, Instagram...?

Put a quick review on Twitter or Facebook, something simple: "I've just read XXX by XXX - loved it!", with maybe the Amazon or Goodreads link so your followers can quickly go to the book.

Word of mouth, (or Tweet or text) you know, is the most effective way to hear about good books worth reading!

Book, Book Pages, Read, Roses, Romantic

 Star Rating Guide:

Except we're not really interested in the last three are we? I am a firm believer in 'if you can't say something nice, say nothing."

You do not have to write an essay! A plain 'I really enjoyed this novel, I'll be reading more by this author' is good enough.
Amazon can be pernickety about reviews for authors who are friends, but there's no reason why you shouldn't post a review if you genuinely enjoyed it (assuming Amazon doesn't delete it.) 

Teddy Bear, Teddy, Bear, Stuffed Animal

There is no 'sell-by', or 'best before' Date on writing a review – read a book a while ago? Feeling guilty that you didn’t write a review at the time? 

No Problem.
Write this in the opening line “I read this book a while ago...” 

An author will be just as pleased to get an honest review whenever it is written.

Storytelling, Story, Telling, Tale

Authors are a funny lot, it takes very little to batter our confidence. 'Why am I doing this?', 'who is going to read this twaddle?' are common thoughts for us authors.

A genuine, lovely review can absolutely make an author's day - and spur us on to get that next book written...

I'm not hinting...
Well Ok, of course I am!

On behalf of myself and my characters:
Thank You, Polaroid, Letters
Leave a review for any (or all!) of my books
(or ANY author - not just me!)
here on Amazon



  1. I can utterly vouch for what you say, Helen; I have had a lot of feedback from authors to whom I have given a good review. and, indeed, from authors whose review wasn't as good as they expected/hoped for - yet in quite a few cases we have been able to discuss it and the author has taken the advice on board.

  2. I have to confess that one of my favorite reviews for my first book was from a reviewer/blogger who only gave it three stars. It actually read more like a four star review, and I really liked her comments about my book. I think a lot of people who are on the fence about whether to purchase a book look at the "negative" reviews, which includes three star reviews, to find a reason not to buy. Therefore, I'm actually pleased to have such a great three star review!


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