I always comment about the lack of reader reviews for my books, but for the third week running I've had a review and they were all for different books. I was very pleased with the 4-star review for Soca Nights. The 1-star review for Naughty Professor was undeserved, I thought, but as I said in my previous post: 'a bad review can be a good thing'. Naughty Professor has been selling much better since that bad review because readers love a bit of sleaze.
Bedtime Erotica for Freaks (like me) received its fourth consecutive 5-star review this week, but the reviewer then deleted it because I inadvertently pissed him off afterwards. He had sent me an email saying that he had enjoyed the book and I asked him to leave a review. I get dozens of similar emails for readers who buy my books, visit my website or read my stories on Literotica and I never ask for reviews, but this reader was one of the few people who 'got' the concept of the book - straight sex, no fancy frills.
He had written an excellent review, so I wasn't thrilled when it was removed, but it was good to be reminded that I had vowed to never actively seek endorsement from readers or fellow writers.
When I first published my books I had the opportunity to have bestselling authors write reviews of my books for an agreed sum and I declined. There are also lots of writers who exchange reviews, but I have never participated because, if I read another writer's work and didn't like it I would hate to have to lie in a review. Similarly, I would hate to make a fellow writer lie in a review of my book. If I was really desperate I could have had dozens of friends and family write 5-star reviews, but I would never stoop that low!
Reviews are good at giving potential readers different perspectives of a book, but don't necessarily guarantee sales. Personally, I never take any review to heart because I've done a few creative writing courses and read enough literary works to be aware of my strengths and weaknesses as a writer. I deliberately choose to write in a style that's uniquely mine; readers either love it or they don't.
Hopefully this be my last post on reviews, but let's see what next week brings.