top of page

The Do's and Don'ts of Asking a Blogger to Read Your Book

Updated: Aug 26, 2019

Do your research.

The most important part of asking a book blogger to read your book is: do they read books like your book? Did you write a thriller? Awesome! But you should probably check out bloggers who read thrillers rather than sending a message to your favorite romance blogger. Do you get me? So, before you go shooting off a message to your favorite bloggers, double check their content and ensure they're reading what you're writing.

Do send a personalized message.

Bloggers can tell when you're sending a generic message to multiple people. They might not mind, but your message might not get their attention in the way a personalized message might. They might think twice about turning down your request if you start off your message with reasons why you're asking them to read your book. Do you like their content? Is there something about the way they review that catches your eye? Do you respect their opinion and/or enjoy their recommendations? A little flattery goes a long way.

Do tell me why your book is worth reading.

Going along with sending a personalized message...include why the blogger should read your book. Many are bombarded with multiple requests a day and if you're sending a two sentence message with a link to your book you might get looked over. So, make an argument for why the blogger should take the time to read your book. What makes it special? Why would they like it? If you take the time to show your excitement about your book, it'll probably get them excited, too.

Don't send a link to your book...and only a link.

Continuing on with the theme of what to include in your message, please don't just send a link with little context. Many bloggers receive message such as, "Can you read my book? Here's the link to check out the details." Those are the requests that get glossed over or straight up ignored. If you can't be bothered to take the time to write an actual message, why should they take the time to read your book?

Do check in occasionally.

Did they blogger say that they'd read your book, but you never heard back? (I'm so guilty of this). Well, it doesn't hurt to check in after a couple weeks if you haven't heard back. Book requests can often get misplaced or flat-out forgot--bloggers are human, too!--so it doesn't hurt to send a friendly message asking if they've had the chance to get to it.

Do support the blogger.

If you're going to send a message saying how much you love the blogger, at least make sure you're following them. In fact, try to follow them on multiple sites (Facebook, Goodreads, Twitters, Instagram, etc) and comment on things, especially if you want them to recognize your name before you ever even ask for their review. And, if the blogger does agree to read and review your novel, then please share the review on your own social media afterwards! It might be shallow, but in all honesty, the more followers the blogger has, the more people who will be checking out their review of your book. Tit for tat.

Don't harass the blogger.

On the same note as Do check in occasionally, don't check in so often the blogger regrets ever agreeing to read your book. Sending a message every 48 hours asking why they haven't gotten to your book yet is a great decision if your end goal is to piss them off and have your book pushed to the bottom of the list or taken off their list entirely. The last person you want to annoy is the popular blogger who has your book in their hands.

Don't send a list of demands.

One blogger I know personally once received a review request that came along with demands such as: finish the book in 3 days, don't give it less than 3 stars, and only review it on Amazon. That's laughable. Most book bloggers don't make money from reading and reviewing novels (note: they don't make money at all from reviewing, but some are so popular they make money in other ways), so they don't want to hear from high-maintenance authors making demands on how the blogger should handle their hobby. If you take away their enjoyment, why on Earth would they use precious time reading your novel? Note: demands are different from requests, you can always request that the blogger review on various sites or use certain promotional materials. It's all in the way you word it!

Don't get mad if a blogger doesn't like your book.

It's unfortunate to hear that a blogger you respect didn't enjoy your book as much as you'd hoped (or maybe they didn't like it at all). No one likes to hear negative things about a book they worked hard on, but it's impossible for everyone to like your book. And hey, it could have just been that the blogger didn't jive with one character or a piece of the plot or the ending. It could be nothing personal. But you can make it a learning experience! Ask the blogger to give some constructive criticism and maybe you'll find the feedback valuable. And please understand how awkward it is for a blogger to have to tell you that they didn't like your book. I have agonized for days over how to tell an author I just didn't enjoy what they'd written. It's not easy for us. And please, don't send a scathing response.

Don't take it personally if a blogger says no.

A blogger saying no can be like a punch to the gut. You put yourself out there, finally pressed that send button, and the blogger you respect more than anything has turned you down. Drat. But don't take it personally! Hopefully they gave you a reason, but if they didn't you can assume that it could be any number of the following: they don't have time right now, they don't feel like your book jives with their interests, they don't like the plot & don't want to read it and be forced to give you a less than favorable review, they got your message and then totally forgot about it... and on and on. It could be personal, but likely it's not and they just couldn't fit you in right then because they're swamped and book blogging is only a hobby, not their full-time job. Try again on your next novel--who knows, you might catch them at a better time!

Don't act like your book is thee book of the year.

Maybe it is the book of the year, but at least feign humbleness. One blogger received a review request from an author and when she declined, due to her already stacked TBR, the author send her a totally sassy response saying she was "missing out". Missing out on what? The author's bad attitude it sounds like. Confidence is great, but if you're going to be condescending to the blogger you're going to get yourself blacklisted in the blogger community right quick. So, if an author says they're not interested, just let it drop. Don't push the subject.

Don't make the blogger pay for your book.

Please note that this is this is the opinion of Romantically Inclined Reviews and said opinion may not extend to other bloggers.

This may be controversial, and the intention is not to anger anyone with this opinion, but I feel it needs to be said. I don't spend my money lightly (mostly because I don't have much of it), so when I pay for a book it's going to be from an author I know and love. There are so many books on my TBR list (both review requests and genuine pleasure reads) that any request requiring that I buy the author's book prior to reviewing doesn't even go to the bottom of the list. It doesn't make the list at all. I understand that authors want to make money from their work, but asking a blogger to read your novel should be considered an investment in your writing.


If you're a book blogger, what are some of your own recommendations for dos and don'ts?

A special thanks to: @feminist_romance, @literarylovebooks, @gigireadsromance, and @fortheromantic for their assistance in compiling this list.


bottom of page