Larry Nolen has recently done a couple of long posts (here and here) about the relationship between reviewers and publishers, and how this appears to have changed somewhat in the era of book bloggers. Broadly speaking I agree with him. Even if I wanted to agree to review a book I was given, I can’t guarantee that I’ll have the time, and I don’t like the idea that a free copy of the book is seen as “payment” for the review. I do still get a few free books from author friends, and there are some publicists I’m on good terms with, and will accept books from, but the majority of the books you see reviewed here are books I have bought because I wanted to own them.
I did quite a few reviews last month, and that proved to be an interesting experiment. I don’t put the reviews in the actual blog posts because I like to see how many people click through to read the review. The review that got most views was the one for Debris. It got 61 unique views. Of that number, some will be spammers. I get around 300 spam comments a day, and I know that some of those were posted on the Debris review. If I were a publicist I’d certainly not bother to send a book to someone who only has around 50 readers. Hopefully this will deter some of the hopeful self-published writers who email me their books.