Step 12: Draft Friends, Neighbors, Peers, and Family to Get Your First Reviews

How to get your first book reviews fast.

Getting book reviews is tough, especially when a book is brand new. A new book displays no star rating, which makes potential readers hesitant to buy. A new series has no momentum to apply to the latest books in the series because it possesses few readers.

Thank goodness for family and friends.

One of your first jobs after self-publishing a book is to gift copies of your book to family and friends along with a request to read the book soon and leave glowing reviews. I'm sure these people will understand and comply with your urgent request when you explain with passion what you're trying to accomplish.

A book with no reviews is unlikely to be purchased. However, a new book with a handful of glowing reviews is very likely to be purchased. Your book needs reviews and fast if it's going to take off and become an Amazon bestseller. The following are likely sources of initial glowing reviews:

  • Family
  • Friends
  • Writer's group members
  • Co-workers

Simply explain the situation you're in, and I'm confident you'll be able to dig up a handful of readers willing to give you a good review.

To gift a book to a reviewer, simply visit your book's Amazon product page and click on the "Buy for others" button on the right side of the screen under the standard purchase options. You'll need the email address of your reviewer to send them a review copy. They'll be notified via email of the availability of your book.

Note that when soliciting reviews, it's always best to ask family members that don't have the same last name as you for reviews.