The Shifting Landscape of Book Reviews

Originally published on HuffingtonPost and IndieReader. Read the full article here.

With few exceptions, major news publications do not review indie books, even though more than 235,000 titles were self-published as of 2011.

This lack of coverage in traditional media outlets, however, has not stopped indies from their rise. To the contrary, according to a recent New York Times article, “Self-published titles made up roughly one-quarter of the top-selling books on Amazon last year.”

In May 2013 alone, according to Digital Book World, at least ten self-published books were best sellers, including The Bet by Rachel Van Dyken, Twisted Perfection by Abbi Glines, Real by Katy Evans and Wool Omnibus Edition (Wool 1–5) by Hugh Howey. Even after an indie title has reached bestselling status—and sometimes the imprimatur from a traditional publisher—reviews from a bonafide news outlet can be few and far between.

To fill the gap left by traditional critics, book blogs have become reliable resources for thousands of people looking for up-and-coming indie titles. And nowadays, getting reviews from these online sources can be enough to propel these books onto the best seller lists of the very media outlets that shun them. [Read more…]


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