Paid Reviews: No Thanks!

In my effort to promote my book I have been looking for urban fantasy/paranormal blogs. Annoyingly every blog I looked at after the first page on Google hasn't been updated since 2013 and the ones I did find pretty much said the same thing: NO REVIEWS BY INDIE-WRITERS! I'm not one to give up, however, so I decided to turn my search to "indie book review blogs". Surely there would be blogs for that. Indie novels have a market so it would make sense for someone to capitalise on it. I quickly found a site that listed 5 places where you could go to get your book reviewed.

I eagerly opened a separate tab for each one and the first one I looked at made my jaw fall to the ground. They wanted over £300 to do a review! I clicked on another and saw that they were charging for reviews as well- although admittedly for far less. I get why someone would charge to do a review. I really do, but I can't understand why an author would want to pay that much for one big reason: not everyone is going to like your content.

Even though the two reviews I have received at the moment have been very positive, I know that there will be people who won't care for my writing or my story. An example of this is the last three novels in Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld series. My girlfriend and I are big fans of Kelley Armstrong's work. Her novel Bitten was the first novel I properly read after finishing Deathly Hallows and I became a fan almost instantly. I went out and bought the rest of her stuff and lent them to my girlfriend when she went to France for three weeks. She came back and bought her own copies and we waited patiently for the release of her next book. 

It was then announced it would end with a trilogy focusing on the character Savannah. Savannah had been one of my favourite characters in the series since she was introduced so having the series end with her was an exciting idea...except I hated all three. No disrespect to Kelley Armstrong. She's my second favourite author and I think she's great, but the Savannah trilogy did nothing but frustrate me, yet my girlfriend liked them quite a lot.

We then have Kelley Armstrong's Darkest Powers and Darkness Rising trilogies. They are basically two halves of one story with the Powers trilogy focusing on a Necromancer called Chloe and her friends while Rising focuses on a new group of friends with the protagonist now a girl called Maya. Again, my feelings were different than my girlfriends. I preferred the Rising trilogy while she preferred the Powers trilogy.

Everyone went crazy about the film Birdman and so my friends and I went to see it. Having studied Film and TV Production I found the film interesting to watch from a technical standpoint but we were all pretty much bored. Me and my friends really liked the film adaption of The Mortal Instruments yet it got a lower approval rating than the first Twilight film. My friends and I saw Jurassic World and everyone in my group loved it...except my girlfriend. What I'm getting at is that people like different things and while something might be generally considered good by the public, that doesn't mean that everyone will like it.

So why would I pay over £300 for someone to read my book only to get a potentially bad review at the end of it? I might as well give someone £300 to walk behind me with a big sign saying "I suck".