Book Reviews Guideline

Last week, we invited and encouraged Book Review article submissions (Book Review Article Submissions Wanted).

About 9 emails came in asking for clarification as to whether we accept book reviews by the author themselves? After much consideration, here’s our opinion and policy going forward:

  • We will not accept book reviews by the author of the book, themselves.
  • We will not accept book reviews written by 3rd parties and submitted by the author of the book that is being reviewed.

While we know this won’t be a popular decision with the promotional nature of our site, the decision is designed to encourage honest reviews by an objective party. That said, if authors want to send copies of their books to other EzineArticles experts and encourage them to submit book reviews, that’s fine… but the review should be done by a non-blood relative.

  • We will also not accept nasty book reviews that are designed to save a consumer from buying the book or seek to destroy or dilute the credibility of the author of the book. Those are better left for your blog and not in a syndicatable article.
  • We will accept book reviews that mentions a negative or who the book might not be for, provided that’s not the theme of the book review. If you hated the book, we prefer to not see your book review here.
  • Help us out by only reviewing real books or real ebooks. We must be able to find a copy for sale of the book or ebook being reviewed.
  • Sorry, we don’t provide book reviews for your book. Best way to get them if you are an author is to ask your clients or give away copies to influential people and ask for a review.


Susan Scharfman writes:

You have got to be joshing! What kind of an egocentric idiot would write his or her own book review? Who would read it? Their question is not only insulting to writers, it’s stupid.


Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 12:59 PM


Ed Howes writes:

Oh Susan,

That SOUNDS so judgmental! :-) I want to point out that negative reviews will probably not get the reviewer much paid work either, even if the reviewer is very good. I occasionally read customer book reviews on Amazon and find the wholly negative reviews annoying and of little value, especially when compared to the positive reviews or those just even handed.

Once again, Chris is using very good judgement in creating policy for those who obviously need it. Will we ever get over on this guy? :-)

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 1:25 PM


Dave Saunders writes:

I really like this idea and the guidelines offer a great opportunity for a niche expert to develop additional credibility as a subject matter expert.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 3:08 PM


Pamela Beers writes:

I like your positive attitude, Chris. Just because a reader doesn’t like what a particular author has written, doesn’t mean what the author has written is not quality material.

Reading a negative review usually prompts me to go out & buy the book and see how bad it really is! I think I’ll write myself a bad review in hopes someone will go out and buy my book. ;-))

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 4:05 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

Susan, I would! And there is nothing wrong with ego; that is a myth and falsehood perpetuated by under achievers of those people they envy who are indeed top performers. In fact, it gets really evident in sports between the top tier players and the also rans or fans who can barely make it off the couch, this attitude is one of low self-esteem and is not to be honored at all. Labeling the winners ego-centric? Lets name losers too then or those who cannot make the grade. Indeed it takes a little ego to compete at those levels if you want to actually win.

Here is an instance when someone might want to write their own book review; let’s say one has a book coming out which few people have read yet. Perhaps only even 10 copies so far since it is being offered online. Lets say the book is Free. Lets say that the book is a self-help book the author wants to promote.

Another comment is that authors and writers often go on speaking tours to promote their own books. Why? Oh, because it works and they need synergy to get enough people to read it, in order to get book reviews in the first place. Next, Isaac Asimov often wrote book reviews of his own books? Not exactly a nobody in writing. And writing a book review with your name at the bottom is completely honest and the reader can take that self-promotion aspect into consideration just like they do when they read articles that promote other trinkets and expertise here.

What type of ego centric idiot would write article touting their own online website products? Hmm? You mean like 90% of the of the article authors here? They write articles to promote their industry, websites, products and you name it in order to drive people to their websites. What difference would it make if it were a book with an important subject they feel the world needs to know? Is everyone who believes in their product so much to promote what they are doing an igo-centric idiot? My gosh that is not only harsh it is HATE speech. If you believe in your product or book that much, why not write and tell others what it is about?

Additionally, if the self-written-book review does not belong in the Book Review Section, then put it into the section of the subject of the book or Opinion Category then? Still if it is a book review then no matter who wrote it, it is still a book review. Is this discrimination by the socialist movement? I believe it is and this is typical of the weakness in society, condemning the strong from speaking, through social conditioning. This is all interesting indeed.

Now lets see if that can stir up some controversy for some more articles? YES!

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 4:34 PM


Dave Saunders writes:

Ego is fine. It’s when it crosses into arrogance that one becomes an angry person who lashes out against everyone else for their “problems.”

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 5:34 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

Let me further illuminate a point of contention.

You see, I wrote a Car Wash Fundraiser Book, which is free, I derive no monetary value for it. Telling people how to do car wash fundraisers actually hurts our ‚¬“mobile car wash‚¬ franchisees, because it takes business away from them. Is it ego-maniac syndrome for me the author to write a book review on that book so that more people read it? Yes or No? I submit to you that it is not.

Next, I have 1 million hits to that book here;

And that probably equates to 100s of thousands of people reading parts or all of it or downloading the .pdf version for free. Since the book is not on there are no real book reviews online. I am very certain no one is going to write a book review here on it. Although I once read an article that mentioned it written by someone else. On the Internet I have found some mention of it in various places and only a couple book reviews ever.

The more people who read that book the more money raised by teen sports team, youth groups and small non-profits. This keeps kids involved and off drugs. It prevents crime and is a positive thing. Why wouldn’t ME, the author, write a book review on it? If I do, does that make me an ego-centric jerk? NO WAY. Care to opine?

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 6:35 PM


Allen Taylor writes:

Lance, I agree with your premise that it doesn’t make you an “ego-centric idiot” as Susan said. But you have to consider the medium.

Article marketing is a different animal than a book review. A book review, by its nature, implies that it is written by an objective the party. The purpose of it is to illuminate the pros and cons or the positive attributes of something versus the negative. The perception is that can hardly be objective about one’s own work to sufficiently write a review that would be of value to someone considering spending money to acquire the work in question.

Article marketing, however, is not intended to be objective. Its purpose is to promote oneself or one’s products and services. Your argument that they are one and the same is like saying a documentary and an infomercial are identical and therefore follow the same rules and customs. It isn’t true.

In order to be effective in any medium, you have to understand its purpose and the techniques that successful people use to be effective with the medium. In football, you wouldn’t carry a baseball bat onto the field because, for one thing you’d likely be penalized if you used it, and it wouldn’t help you any in the first place. Although, I for one would get a good laugh out of seeing a wide receiver trying to “bat” the ball instead of catching it.

I think EAs policy makes sense. Overly negative views tend not to give any value. Someone could have a personal vendetta against a certain author or a dislike for a particular genre and trashing something that has no redeeming value at all is just a waste of time. When I was a newspaper editor, I wouldn’t review a book if I couldn’t find anything I liked about it. It just didn’t make sense. On the other hand, if I couldn’t find anything I didn’t like about a book I looked harder. Flawless work rarely appears out of human minds.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 7:26 PM


Lance Winslow writes:


Who says we are talking about ME here. I am defending those who wish to write their own Book Reviews. This is not personal at all, I actually agree with Chris, but only due to social norms, not because I believe authors should not write their own reviews. I think that there are instances when it makes sense for an author to write their own book reviews. In fact, who better to write a book review than the author? The writer wrote every word and knows what he or she meant.

Consider the many book reviews out there written by those who did not even read the whole book. Many have accused the NYT of this in their book reviews, I actually agree that most of those book reviews the writer of the review never even read the book. Go onto the website and read the book reviews. You’ll say to yourself; that person obviously did not read the book, what planet are they living on.

Additionally, how many times has a famous author in a TV Interview said; ‚¬“No‚¬ that is not what I meant, people are miss interpreting what I said or they are blowing out of proportion the intent. If the author of the book review has integrity and objectivity in writing their own review, which they should if they have passion for the subject matter and what is written inside, then their comments about the book at 50 times more prevalent than a reader who is lost, has never written anything or is part of the 98% of humans who do not think.

You state: ‚¬“The perception is that can hardly be objective about one’s own work to sufficiently write a review that would be of value to someone considering spending money to acquire the work in question.‚¬

I agree that this is the perception, but I also know that it is not always the case. In fact many of us are more critical about our own writing than any reader could ever be. For instance go up to an Opera Singer and tell her that performance was ‚¬“Flawless‚¬ and she will tell you every mistake she made during the show.

And to your point about ‚¬“Money‚¬ if the book is an online eBook and it is offered free, then there is no issue with money or monetary compensation, thus that argument is out the window and such a perception by the public should be exposed for what it is; Pure Poppycock. Just because the public perceives conflict of interest or insincerity does not mean it exists, the public only thinks that because of the insincere tactics of a few, if someone is geniune and they know it, they need not be called an ego-centric maniac by the peanut gallery.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 8:46 PM


Allen Taylor writes:

Lance, I understood your gist. I was using the rhetorical “you.”

In your case, I sense that you are more philanthropic minded than most. Retired at 40 gives you certain privileges with time and money that most people don’t have. You could likely sell your book and maybe not as many people would read it but the people who really needed to read it would be willing to shell out the right amount of money on it. But if they caught wind that you had written a “book review” in order to tell it’s good points and bad points, I think they’d wonder two things:

1) If you’re trying to sell it then why would you tell me it’s bad points?

2) If you see the bad points in the first place then why don’t you correct them and make it a better book, in which case I’d be more willing to buy it.

But since you are giving the book away that’s a moot point. Most people who have free e-book downloads use the technique to build a list so they can sell other products. You’re probably not doing that. So a book “review” wouldn’t make a lot of sense. You’d get more mileage out of good SEO work on your website, article marketing and maybe even a blog.

That said, yes, I can see when a book review might be in an author’s best interest. An author could write a review to promote a book in order to get other reviewers to take a look at it or to promote his speaking engagements, etc. But in terms of PR, third-party praises go a lot further. And a lot of authors use reviews to gain feedback on their writing so they can improve their skills as writers.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 9:09 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

I do not disagree on those points Allen, yet I think it is laughable that;

We are going to allow everyone in the world to write a book review about the book you wrote EXCEPT you? How discriminatory is that? This shows the ridiculous nature of this ‚¬“public tradition‚¬ and thus it should be busted. And I believe EzineArticles ought to be able to break this custom and religious tradition of the publishing industry. Let’s break this cycle and give an advantage to the authors, who work hard to bring information, literature and enlightenment to the rest of humanity. Let’s not hold them back.

This is a Matter of Principle actually, not whether one will be perceived in a negative mindset or not. That is not a consideration of this philosophical debate, as I score high enough on the EI chart to understand all that and more having marketed products and services in my various companies. My point is that it is absurd and unfortunate that the author is some how considered less of an information source about their work than Joe Blow writing a book review about it.

Personally, I want to read all that an author has to say about their book. I cannot get enough of that information. What were they thinking, what do they think now, why do they have these opinions. This information is invaluable to the reader in their understanding, observations and insights learned from a work.

The only reason we do not allow author’s to write their own book reviews is a personal perception of a dying or rather changing Publishing Industry’s traditions and concepts. Yet we still allow the authors to go on book speaking tours? So why not publish those as Notes to the Reader in the form of book reviews. I think that is a wonderful thing.

Why do we honor an author’s work if we dishonor their comments on the work itself or their opinions? Philosophically this makes no sense at all and it is absurd. No way am I going to for a minute go along with this notion, just because it is a social norm or faux poux. Wouldn’t you like Michael Angelo to come back and comment on his works for all of us? I would.

And mind you that you are talking with someone who often lets the CSPAN book talks from the Author run in the back ground. If that is good enough for TV, then an authors comments here in an online written form here ought to be just what readers are looking for.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 9:49 PM


Allen Taylor writes:

Those are all good points, Lance. The publishing industry does have a traditionalist, elitist stance on these matters. And I see your point about allowing a writer to comment on his or her own work. The advent of new media, however, is perfect for this. Through blogs, forums, social networks and bookmarking sites like and Technorati, authors can do exactly what you are saying. Instead of relying on publishers and agents to shield them from their fans, authors can go directly to their fans, and many have. That’s the beauty of the Internet. We can all be authors and publishers and we don’t need some “expert” to tell us how much we’re worth. Our targeted traffic will speak for itself.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 10:27 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

I believe EzineArticles ought to get with the NEW MEDIA trend and lead the way.

The reader, consumer and authors are better served and can join as one to learn from each other in a net-centric way to promote the forward progression of the species and thought.

Failure to sieze this opportunity is a mistake in my humble opinion. EzineArticles needs to pony up and watch the changes and take advantage of the needs and desires of the readers, authors and their own future.

Sometimes change and innovation requires a daggar into the old, in order to maintain the forward progression of both the individual and the whole.

Comment provided February 11, 2007 at 11:14 PM


Luigi Frascati writes:

“We will accept book reviews that mentions a negative or who the book might not be for, provided that’s not the theme of the book review. If you hated the book, we prefer to not see your book review here.”


this is specifically the problem of book reviews proffered by those who are not expert in the subject matter or topic discussed in the book. These folks do not write reviews – they make judgement calls, which are for the most part unconstructive even when they are positive.

For instance, I write a lot about real estate economics. Clearly, I wouldn’t be the best author around to write a review on your “Articles Production Strategies” – either as a praise or as a criticism .

My suggestion is that as a condition ‘sine qua non’ for accepting book and e-book reviews, EzinesArticles require that all reviewer submit a curriculum of qualifications or otherwise a brief outlining their expertise in the topic that is the subject matter of the review.

This way you can omit your foregoing policy rule, since you will receive reviews authored only by qualified people and, therefore, unbiased and certainly more objective, honest and professional.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 2:06 AM


Lance Winslow writes:

Yes, very interesting idea. We should also make sure that the person who has read “Saving Fish from Drowning” by Amy Tan, have been to Burma and have been fishin their past life.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 3:50 AM


Luigi Frascati writes:

Well, not necessarily.

It would be enough for that person to know something more about fish drowning than you do, for example, and certainly it wouldn’t be a requirement for him to go to Burma since – as you may or may not know – fish drown everywhere.

Here is my point – one doesn’t have to be an expert at a professional level to write a review. But he must know the basics of the subject matter of what he or she is reviewing, otherwise it will not be a review at all.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 6:51 AM



When an author writes their own book review, we call that a sales pitch or marketing. It can never be viewed as an objective review.


To judge whether a person is really qualified or not to review a book on a certain subject matter would be too difficult for us to manage.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 7:20 AM


Luigi Frascati writes:

Well, but that’s exactly what you do by implication when you accept book reviews and disseminate them throughout the Internet.

You do have a liability exposure, whether you like it or not, as editors and/or owners of this outfit. Some book-authors may not be thrilled by the reviews you publish throughout the world and not only when those reviews are negative in nature, but also when they are written by unqualified folks who know pretty much nothing of what they are reviewing.

Besides, a little introduction on who’s the reviewer would make the review even more credible – and palatable, as well as limit considerably your exposure, too.

Just a suggestion.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 7:37 AM


Allen Taylor writes:


Good one, Lance. Sarcasm noted. Someone else seems to have missed it.

Chris’s point was the one I made earlier. I fully agree. Chris, I’d be interested to know two things:

1) Have you talked to publishers who might be interested in book reviews to see what they would want?

2) What about links in the author’s resource box. What would be your policy about links that point to places not on the author’s website where the books can be purchased, such as or the author’s website. I ask about this because an author could pay someone to write a review and make a it condition of payment that links point to their website or the websites of vendors who sell his book.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 7:38 AM


Allen Taylor writes:

Luigi, you must have been posting your last comment as I was posting mine.

EA is not liable for every comment in every article. Just what kind of liability are you talking about? I’m sure there is some disgruntled reader of paperbacks out there who is itching to be reimbursed $5.95 because he read a book review that influenced him to buy a book that he ended up liking despite the fact that the book reviewer told him not to buy the book.

That sounds like a story for The Onion, doesn’t it?

EA is like a flea market for authors. When you go to the flea market, the flea market owners have rented out space to vendors to sell their wares. They don’t care if the sunglass maker is qualified to sell sunglasses. Whether he has a license or certification to judge the difference between eye-protective lenses or just plain vanilla doesn’t, nor should it, concern him. What should concern him is whether vendors are conducting business in an ethical manner according to the generally understood ethical practices of the professions represented at his market, or whether anyone is breaking any laws.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 7:46 AM




Great idea… to have the reviewer of the book start the review with why they are a credible reviewer.

Every book author knows that he or she may be reviewed both positively and negatively and that while they might not like a particular review… it comes with the territory of being a published author.


We’ve already made it clear that the link can’t be an affiliate link, but if the book reviewer wanted to link to the non-affiliate link of the book purchase URL, that’s fine with us and would be considered one of their non-self serving active links that are allowed.

I suppose you could argue that it’s one of the self-serving links, but I really don’t think this would be abused enough for us to have to go make further policy on it.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 7:46 AM


Luigi Frascati writes:


I am talking about anyone ‘breaking any laws’ whether in actuality or just in the mind of the person whose work is being reviewed. Which breaking of the law might be interpreted as slanderous or libelous, for instance, or just merely incorrect.

And I question whether the person whose work is being reviewed through the good offices of EzineArticles would in fact think of EzineArticles as merely a ‘flea market for authors’. If they did, this person could argue, why would EzineArticles have a policy on book reviews at all.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 8:03 AM


Allen Taylor writes:

Chris, maybe it could be a part of your writer’s tips or reviewer suggestions to add in the article somewhere why they are qualified to make the judgments they are making. As a publisher, I don’t feel like I need such a statement in every article. If I know an author well then I know his qualifications and such a statement isn’t necessary.

I’m with Lance on this one. Anyone should be able to write a review. But it helps to know something about a topic before you write about it. I’m not an auto mechanic, but I can tell you whether a book helped me to figure out how to change the starter on my imported Panamanian sedan or made it more difficult.

Still, a good reviewer should demonstrate that he knows a little something about the subject he is reviewing. I’d expect a food critic to know the difference between oregano and chili pepper and I’d expect a music reviewer to be able to discuss the nuances between heavy metal and punk thrash. If an author can’t tell me intelligently why he doesn’t like a book or why Chapter 3 is weak then I’m not likely to use his review. But that should be a publisher decision.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 8:04 AM


Luigi Frascati writes:

Really, my whole concern is this – one thing is to author an article, quite another to write a critique on the work of someone else.

One can write an article a say a whole bunch of senseless things. As obtuse as it may be, the article represents the author’s line of thought on a certain subject matter.

But to apply an obtuse line of thought – or one that may be preceived as such – on the work of someone else … in this litigious world, I think it’s pretty risky.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 8:19 AM


Susan Scharfman writes:


(1) I am hardly an underachiever, and I do not need to prove that to you or anyone else. (2) Everyone is born with an ego. Too small is just as harmful to the human pschye as those with egos so enormous they cannot see anyone else’s POV but their own.

(3) A self-review is as Chris says, a sales pitch.
Making the rounds to speak about a book, is a sales pitch, not a review. In the real world of book publishing, online reviews by readers don’t count. Reviews by pros count. reviews by pros sell books.

(4)This blog is meant to be informative and educational and helpful to people who are interested in WRITING and growing, not blowing their own horns.

(5)This is the only blog I participante in. When it gets to be nasty, I’m not interested in wasting my time. EzineArticles is too good to sink to such a level, and I would ask those who participate in this blog to be civil and refrain from insulting participants because their ego is telling them they are right.


Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 8:43 AM


Allen Taylor writes:

Ummmm, Susan, you were the first poster on this string and you set the tone when you came out slugging with your comment “What kind of an egocentric idiot would write his or her own book review?”

If you take up the practice up pugilism you should expect to take one on the chin every now and then. Otherwise, perhaps you shouldn’t enter the ring.

Your comment that online reviews by readers don’t count: Says who? Those underachievers who can neither write a book nor a review themselves so they make their living powdering their defense mechanisms?

And what do you mean by “Reviews by pros count?” What’s a pro? Someone who failed to write a best seller so they decided to make a living telling other people why their best sellers shouldn’t be best sellers? In actuality, I trust some of non-pro book reviews more than I trust some of those in the publishing trade journals.

The point is, anyone can write a book review. The question is, is it credible?

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 12:26 PM


Susan Scharfman writes:


Er, point well taken. I will soften it: How can a writer with any INTEGRITY write his or her own book review? I don’t care what anyone says, it simply isn’t professional and would not be taken seriously by professionals in the business. When reviewers who are themselves recognized authors‚¬€Joyce Carol Oates, for example, or Tom Clancy‚¬€write reviews, people pay attention, publishers pay attention, books are sold. That’s what I mean by the pros. It’s a business, Allen, and a tough one. While online reviews give clues to genre, etc. they are often written by friends who know the author. That’s a fact, not fiction.

The answer to your question is: Of course it would not be credible. Many people are bitter because they cannot crack the publishing nut; or feel the door is not open to them. The answer to that is, if you are a writer you don’t stop trying; or an actress or an artist. Far as I’m concerned, this horse has been beaten to death.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 1:52 PM


Ed Howes writes:


Please excuse this related interruption. I can write an excellent, objective review on any book I am interested enough to read, or write, knowing nothing more about the subject than what I read or wrote. You are free to assume I am promoting myself or my intelligence or my writing skills or all. I do not mind. And should you be skepticl of anything I say, good for you. Of course, if there is any monetary gain involved, nothing I then say is legitimate so your skepticism ought to double or triple. Good for you once more, double or tripl

Here are my credentials: I read and review books I like. This is the book I want to tell you about. Here is what I have to say. If you like this review, send me a dollar.

Think – speak generates fewer unintended consequences than Speak – think. Never-the-less, the unintended consequences can be very instructional and often a joy to behold. One remark is made with less consideration than warranted and in a disparaging tone. A response or a few appear in similar fashion and the party has begun. Different points of view, different styles of expression. Minor judgments yet very good conversation even when less than polite and proper. So far I like this thread. “Bring it on!”

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 2:40 PM


Pamela Beers writes:

Susan: You go girl!

Ed: If you were here, I’d give you a big hug! You are such a love! Where do I send that dollar?!

Personally, there isn’t a book I have read that I don’t learn something from. Some of them have been “sleepers”, but I always learn something.

Now what is the topic again…oh yeah book reviews. I’ll be sure to send in at least a couple from which I have benefited.

Interesting stats on book reviews, Chris. Hm-m-m nine times the views. Thanks for the tip.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 3:07 PM


Allen Taylor writes:

Susan, I don’t disagree with any of that. But we’re talking apples and oranges.

I trust Joyce Carol Oates when it comes to recommending or not recommending memoirs, fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry and feminist literature genres. But I wouldn’t necessarily trust her judgment when it comes to writing reviews on Internet marketing books. As I’ve said before in other posts, the medium is vitally important.

EA is provides material for ezine publishers. That material is produced by authors and marketers who want to see their name in print and have something to sell. A connection is made when the one provides what the other is looking for. Online book reviews are the equivalent of me calling a friend on the phone and saying “Gee, I really liked that movie. You’ve got to see it.” Is that credible? I, and millions of other people, think so.

This is what Seth Godin calls conversational marketing. I trust Seth Godin. He’s one of the pioneers of Internet marketing and has influenced just about everyone who has been successful at it. I think conversational marketing works. I’d guess that Chris Knight thinks so as well since he provides the medium for it to occur.

I am currently reading a book that I plan to review. I will run my review in my ezine. I will also publish it on EzineArticles and other directories in hopes that others will see its value and publish it as well. I don’t do this because I want to see my name in print. I’ve been published thousands of times and invited by an agent and a traditional publisher to send my work for their review. I do it because I am marketing my business and I know that this kind of marketing works. It provides value for me, my customers, other business entrepreneurs and their customers and, I presume, you too. It’s a different medium than The New Yorker. It therefore has a different set of rules.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 3:15 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

Dear Susan,

I am glad you 100% see my POV because you are well rounded, grounded and balanced, and successful. I thought that was a given, I am comfortable with your status as a writer. My point of view on this matter is multifaceted.

A self-review is not necessarily a sales pitch, Chris is a wise gentleman, however no one can honestly make that statement as an absolute. In fact books generally contain introductions, notes to reader and forwards. If those are published as articles they would indeed make great reading here at EzineArticles. Of course if that were posted, it would be in the book review section and now it would be disallowed. I believe that to be a troubling issue.

I am rather upset at what you wrote about me in Item (2) that really is nasty and mean spirited in my humble opinion, but I will let that one go. Thank you for deleting those comments before you posted them here.

You state; ‚¬“In the real world of book publishing, online reviews by readers don’t count.‚¬

I submit to you that there is ‚¬“NO Real World of Book Publishing‚¬ and that it is a created world by an Industry whose time and era is ending and therefore, in this venue, which is not the Real World of Publishing, those points are invalid.

You state; ‚¬“Reviews by pros count. reviews by pros sell books.‚¬

Indeed, but that is off topic. Professional Parasite book reviews only exist because readers are tired of the horrific book reviews by’s malcontents, and worthless dribbling comments on books. I much prefer reading what the author has to say than anyone else twice removed from the situation.

You state; ‚¬“This blog is meant to be informative and educational and helpful to people who are interested in WRITING and growing, not blowing their own horns.‚¬

Whose blowing their own horn? I grant you status as a writer and validated your erroneous absolute assumptions, as you Attacked self-reviewers as Ego-centric maniac types. You see, it simply is not so, it might be so, but it would not necessarily be so, so standing corrected in this case would be the right thing to do. I believe you are a good person, so I am not worried about it. Indeed in bringing this to Light, I see that a Mirror would be appropriate also for the critic of self-reviewers.

You state; ‚¬“This is the only blog I participante in. When it gets to be nasty, I’m not interested in wasting my time.‚¬

This is so great of you to participate and give us these juicy comments; ‚¬“What kind of an Ego-centric so-in-so would write their own book review?‚¬ In fact that is the first comment in this Blog and it has helped me write 10 points of contention (I call articles) you call ‚¬“Ego Rantings‚¬ and thus I actually am very appreciative for the help with my article content.

You stated: ‚¬“ EzineArticles is too good to sink to such a level, and I would ask those who participate in this blog to be civil and refrain from insulting participants because their ego is telling them they are right.‚¬

Great comment! In that, as per your advice, I have previously acknowledged all the different sides of this issue in this blog thread as worthy of consideration. If one was to re-read those comments it is quite evident. The Boomerang rhetoric in such a comment from thou, Susan are not facilitating the subject.

Just because someone has an ego does not mean they are wrong. Just because someone has convinced themselves in their belief system that they are balance does not mean they are right. The Ego debate is irrelevant to the actual debate it is akin to labeling your enemy unfit to lead due to their stance outside the social norm; then using guerrilla style rhetoric attacks at their expense. Primate Politics 101. I cannot honor such comments, would recommend adhering to the topic. I leave you with that thought.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 3:21 PM


Allen Taylor writes:

Geez, Lance. You’re sounding like Ayn Rand.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 3:32 PM


Lance Winslow writes:


Susan is a champion in her domain and makes some great points about the Publishing Industry and Professional Book Reviewers. Many of these points Allen you have made and I too. I read a ton of book reviews on all sorts of topics. Currently, I am working my way through this list;

And I always read the quarterly book reviews in this list;

And thus end up purchasing and buying many of those books too. I most, as a reader, appreciate those Interviews, Speeches, Writings or Comments by the author themselves. The second hand hearsay, which is what a book review is, is already removed from the original observations and thoughts of the author and book reviews have so much opinion and often emotional baggage in them when written by a malcontent book reviewer that I question their sincerity.

I want to hear what the author has to say first, and then perhaps entertain trust worthy reviewers, who do not necessarily have my opinions or observational positioning. My comments on this subject come from the perspectives of the writer, self-publisher, reader, Internet Surfer, book review reader and the fact I have family in the publishing industry. Thus these insights are not from inside any C.A.V.E. and have nothing to do with my hardwork and achievements.

Indeed, I have a strong ego, more than most people I have met, but it is an earned ego from doing. It helps me win, innovate, achieve and that is a good thing. Nothing wrong with that. If one does not believe in themselves and their abilities then they will achieve very little. The ego issue is invalid here in this subject of self-review articles for authors of books.

What really changed me to the ego thing was reading the Introduction to ‚¬“A New Type of Science‚¬ by Stephen Wolfram. There was an ‚¬“I did this‚¬ or ‚¬“I did that in every sentence, sometimes two. I thought, wow, what an ego turn-off, this must be hype, this guy is all ego and I just paid $68.00 for this book? Well, I was not going to waste my purchase so I kept reading.

Then eventually, I read the whole book he wrote. Took me a month, it is huge 1200 pages of small print, calculations and heavy reading, it took me another 2-months part-time to follow all the references that I had highlighted. Now then, although the man has a tremendous ego, his work is still Excellent. I call this an earned ego. Nothing wrong with that.

He deserves credit for his 10-year project. And no one is better qualified to write a book review on that book than the man who wrote it and created this New Type of Science. If someone wishes to label this gentleman ego-centric, fine. But you cannot discount his work and if it takes an ego like that to perform and produce such a work, then we need more people like that, not less.

I therefore dismiss the ego debate and in my opinion the book reviewers in the NYTs or New Yorker have hurt or damaged egos and have been disrespected in the past and often take their anger out on the World by trashing writers they disagree with or have never fully read or come to understand the work itself. This is my logic in this matter. I hope others will indeed think here.

Comment provided February 12, 2007 at 4:47 PM


Jan Verhoeff writes:

As an author, unless I were writing a ‘self-review’ for sales purposes, I probably would not write a book review of a book I wrote.

I don’t consider my reviews of books any more important, however than a reader review, because I like to read.

I have been asked on numerous occasions to review books, both by publishers and authors. Most provide the book for my review, which means I’m a PAID reviewer? Hummm does that also mean my review is trite and predictable – probably not, but the reality is, a paid reviewer is expected to give a ‘good review’.

My own view is, if you read a book and like it enough to make a comment on the book, more power to you. If someone is willing to pay you to put on paper what you like, you go! Collect those dolla’s! If you’re not going to READ the book, paid or not, don’t bother me with your opinion, I don’t care to hear it.

These thoughts aren’t particularly logical or illogical, but they are mine, and I felt like sharing – take ’em or leave ’em. Chris hasn’t paid me to provide them, so good bad or indifferent, they are just MY THOUGHTS.


Comment provided February 13, 2007 at 3:54 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

Of course if one believes in their work and wants the world to view it, they must to everything within their power to see that such information gets out to the readers. Thus if you TRULY care about and BELIEVE your work is worthy then you should write your self-book reviews to help the process and disregard social norms or industry non-spoken guidelines.

If some people fault you for this or choose not to read your book review or take it into consideration, fine, that is they choice, but you will reach all the readers who want to hear from the Actual Author. if you worry about what everyone thinks is PC or proper then how can you EVER compete with those who do what it takes, whatever it takes and are relentless in thier pursuits?

I submit that you cannot compete with such individuals and will far so far behind you can never catch up. Writing and getting published or promoting your book or educating humans is not a job for weakness, excuse makers or hiding behind the bushes afraid to speak out and take a stand. Weakness is not an honorable trait, niether is following the crowd, mob or mindless masses. Wake up humans. Think about this issue in a reality perspective. – Lance, out – for now.

Debate with me, for more juicy content and articles, I need material folks to alert the masses.

Comment provided February 13, 2007 at 6:49 PM


Patricia Weber writes:

I get paid as a book reviewer; paper back and hard copies. If I can get permission to use last year’s, are these of interest? You don’t say if the books have to be current although, “We must be able to find a copy for sale of the book or ebook being reviewed,” implies they can be previous to this year.


Comment provided April 8, 2008 at 5:07 PM




Books being reviewed can be published in any year; as long as we can identify the book in some way online as being real and not ‘make believe’.

Yes, crazy as it sounds, some members have tried submitting book reviews of books that don’t and never existed.

Comment provided April 9, 2008 at 7:21 AM


Mary C Newton writes:

I wrote a book “The 1st Career Resources/Directory Alphabetically. I would like your oppinion on having it published. What is my first step.

It’s a good book you need to have a look before you can say “everyone says that about their book.”
Enclosed please find a blurb, about this book. Need your help.

Kind regards
Mary Newton

The Blurb.

TO: Elizabeth H. House, Managing Director

FROM: Jean Wahlborg, Editorial Coordinator

RE: Reading Report for ‚¬“The First Career Reference Directory Alphabetically‚¬ by Mary Newton

DATE: November 7, 2007

Please review the reader’s report for the above noted manuscript. I recommend it for publication via our subsidy-publishing program.

‚¬“The First Career Reference Directory Alphabetically,‚¬ written by Mary Newton, is an ambitious and comprehensive submission that endeavors to inspire the reader to find the most rewarding career path in life. In epic detail, the author explains the importance of researching the elements of a variety of fields to determine if the skills necessary match well with the reader’s interests, aptitude, and aspirations. In addition, the author stresses the crucial nature of becoming computer literate, as nearly all fields require this as a basic skill. Finally, in alphabetical order beginning with ‚¬“Accountant‚¬ and concluding with ‚¬“Zoologist,‚¬ the author provides a long and varied list of career options, many of which could captivate the interest of those seeking to either change or embark upon a career.

Composed exclusively in an informative narrative, the text flows at a brisk tempo, which should maintain the reader’s interest throughout. The author’s vast knowledge of the subject matter is apparent from the earliest passages of the work, which could lend an authoritative air. Overall, the offering is well organized in presentation, enlightening in content, and appears to fulfill the author’s intent.

Mary Newton’s ability to convey her message regarding the importance of finding a suitable career through proper research in an easy-to-comprehend manner could further enhance the appeal of this work.

Comment provided April 9, 2008 at 9:22 PM


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