Fake and paid reviews on Amazon are nothing new, but they’ve been gaining attention once again. A few weeks ago my mother sent me a link to a New York Times article titled, The Best Book Reviews Money can Buy. I read it, processed it, wasn’t surprised and moved on to something else. I’ve never relied on reviews when deciding on a book to purchase.
Ironic. I know. This coming from someone who writes book reviews. I like to think of my reviews more as sharing what I thought about a book with a friend. A friend’s recommendation is one way I find books to read. I also take the old fashion route when deciding on a book–I read a sample and/or jacket description.
I still buy print books. I still go to brick and mortar shops, browse the isles, read the back and inside jacket flaps. If something catches my eye I take a chance. I do the same thing with ebooks on Amazon–only I rely on the free sample and general description. It’s my system and it’s always worked for me, so why would I change?
Another tactic is the book to movie route. If I discover the movie I’m dying to see is based on a book, chances are I’ll want to read the book before I see the movie. (Or after, if I didn’t realize the connection til later.)
There are plenty of ways to discover new books without relying on what may or may not be pseudo-reviews. Yes, it’s shameful some authors have stooped so low. But people are people–no matter who they are or what position in society they hold.
So. Do you rely on book reviews when deciding on a book to purchase? Do you read Amazon reviews? Goodreads reviews? I want to know!