Starving Review Requests

 

I am currently accepting VERY few submissions. Factors that can increase your chances of grabbing a slot revolve around your professionalism, your wit, your passion, and the pitch you can present for your book. I love interesting, fascinating, and creative works written by passionate authors so if you can get that across to me, you have a shot at a review!

I’ve been blogging for some months now since I first published the first edition of my first indie book.  Originally, it was supposed to serve a purely selfish purpose: to get people to buy my books.  The problem was two-fold.  First, I suck at self-promotion.  Second, I suck MORE at being selfish.

While I still shill my own books here, I have taken to the majority of my blogging being about writing and suggestions of ways to write better, as well as analysis of writing tropes.  That wasn’t enough though.  I felt like I had to give more, especially when I found out there was a whole community dedicated to reviewing the books that went past the notice of the big reviewers out there.

So here we are.  Starving Reviews, reviews from one starving author for his fellows.

Now, as a writer myself, I am not made of time.  Or Snickers.  Mmm, Snicker man, I eat your choc – er.  Sorry.  So there will only be so many books I can review.  My typical read time is probably about a week per book.  If I take your request, I’ll try to give you an estimated ‘Time to Review’.

Let’s get some guidelines out of the way:

  1. I will review ANYTHING.  Well, anything that isn’t non-fiction and isn’t straight out porn.  Not that there’s anything against those two things, but they aren’t my bag, baby.
  2. It must be a finished AND released book.  I don’t care the means of publishing, just that you had the courage to put it out there.  I respect courage.
  3. If the book is part of a series, please submit the first book of that series for review.  I won’t read things out of order because that gives me indigestion.
  4. I am a starving author, which means any copies for review must be gifted to me in some fashion.  To quote a great reviewer of other media, GOT ANY CHANGE? *rattles cup*
  5. With all of that said, please send your request to me as an E-MAIL to jbgarner58@gmail.com
  6. Include in your e-mail the book’s title, author, genre, a brief blurb or synopsis, and as many links as you think relevant, especially Goodreads.
  7. Do NOT include a copy of the book in your initial query.  Hunger has made my mind addled and I find it hard to keep things that I don’t actually need safe and organized.  I might eat it, after all.
  8. I thought this would be obvious but to have it said: I *will* post the review in all relevant places.  If you don’t want your book review to be posted after I finish, don’t send it to me to review.

With all of that out of the way, I will try to respond to any request within 24 hours.  If you haven’t gotten word back from me after a week, feel free to resend your request (either the internet or I ate it on accident).

My system of ratings is both simple and complex at the same time.  I will be using a basic 5 star system so as to be most compatible with other review sites I will try my best to cross-post too.  One star means that the book was practically unreadable and was unfinishable by me, two stars means the book was readable but poor, three stars means a solid, enjoyable read, four stars means I highly enjoyed the book and would recommend it, a five star book means I loved the book and by damn you better be writing more of the series/more books in general.

However, a particular IMPORTANT nuance is that I will do my very best to try to filter my review though the expectations of a fan of the book’s genre.  What does that mean?  I won’t review a space opera book on the same criteria as a hard sci-fi book.  A Silver Age campy superhero book won’t be judged on the same points as a crunchy homage to the ’90s anti-hero.

One final thing.  I have one *ahem* special rating, reserved for anyone who submits a book without following the cardinal rule of ‘must be released’.  I *will* post a very brief review of such a book with a rating of ‘No Guts‘.  If you can’t live by the most important virtue of the author and won’t have the determination to release your works before asking for a review, I have no lack of that same thing to show case that to my followers.

If you have any questions about the process or how to submit, please ask in the comments below or e-mail me directly.  I don’t bite unless you smell like ham or cookies.  If you’re looking for more resources for indie books and reviews, check out The Indie View and The Book Review Directory.

25 comments

  1. This is possibly the best ‘review policy’ page I’ve read, and believe me, I’ve read a lot of ’em. Enjoy your hiatus with your family — and expect an email from me in January. 😉

  2. Well, folks, I still have 78 books in my backlog. Still, as I did not have the time to change the hiatus before hand, I’ll have review requests open until this Friday, March 6th, before closing them down for the rest of the month.

  3. Updated to fix some formatting issues that hurt mine own eyes as well as a small clarification of the one and two-star ratings. Oh yeah, I added a link/shoutout to the Book Review Directory too!

  4. I’ll be sure to submit in October. Thank you for having humor in your submission portion, I am not a very funny person but I sure do love to read it! Unfortunately I am craving snickers now…

  5. Oh it’s a shame that you’re closed for reviews – I’d love a review from you, if only for the laughs and food humor. I know what you mean though, I have so many books to read, it’s hard to get to them all.

    In the meantime though, I think I’ll subscribe to your blog. Maybe I’ll luck out and you’ll have an opening some time. And by the way, thanks for the help you’re throwing to indie authors. It’s a jungle out there.

    Annie

    1. Indeed it is! You can always send a request anyway. I’ve been known to very rarely take books out of sequence if the author either impresses me enough, makes me laugh enough, or something about the book strikes me as something I NEED to read.

  6. May I cheat? Be cheeky and ask for an April review slot? My book launch is on April 5th with a lovely foodie party in the local library. A pal makes yummy mini choccy tarts and the baker makes fabulous savouries.so with my favourite kiwi wines we shall have a riotous time.

    In case you want to say NO here’s a bit about the book.
    Book name: Bittersweet

    I’m part of a writing co-operative and we work like a traditional publisher in accepting or rejecting, insisting on editors, proof readers and professional cover designers our members’ books. My new novel, ‘Bittersweet’. has just been given the group’s approval and is now available as an e-book and POD print ready for the great launch.

    A warning my novel ‘Bittersweet’ deals with a sensitive topic.
    Short blurb:
    Bryce Ackerman returns home from a business trip to Vienna expecting to marry his beloved Aimée. But she is pregnant. This is 1872 and Bryce is a Victorian gentleman who doesn’t believe in sex before marriage. Aimée is distraught. So-called officers and gentlemen, on leave, visitors and guests in her home, have been making a game of rape. They have been running a competition to see which regiment’s junior officers could rape the most young women in their own homes. Aimée, her mother, Bryce’s mother and sisters carefully seek out the violated girls and women, offering aid and support and Bryce, for personal reasons as well as an outraged sense of the injustice, attempts to chase down the officers. They have returned to their regiments in India. Bryce follows them intent on revenge for Aimée, and justice for all the victims, but it is no easy task. The officers will do anything to escape retribution and Bryce has to survive in the exotic and erotic atmosphere of India. It is a task which test his own sexuality and his ability to put personal vengeance on one side and secure justice for all.

    Thank you for giving Indies writers the opportunity to get a review. We do appreciate it.
    p.d.r. lindsay
    p.d.r. lindsay-salmon
    ‘the prof ‘
    author p.d.r.lindsay
    pdrlindsaysalmon@gmail.com
    rowanlindsay@rowanlindsay.co.nz
    http://www.rowanlindsay.co.nz
    Published work at: Goodreads

    Writer’s Choice
    http://www.writerschoice.org

  7. Hi J.B. I just emailed an updated pitch for a book review of the final edition of Rarity from the Hollow. I sent you an ARC before. Thanks.

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