Sunday, January 3, 2010

Free Books for Bloggers

I recently discovered the Thomas Nelson Book Review Program from the blog Proverbs 31 Woman in Training.

It's a pretty simple program for bloggers. You pick out a book to review from their site. They send you that book for free. You write a review on your blog and link it to their site. Repeat.

Knowing that my book reviews may not be extremely interesting to all of my regular readers, I am only going to post them on Sunday, which has traditionally been my day off. I expect I will do about one per month, maybe two, depending on how fast they ship. By putting the review on Sunday, I will not be displacing my regular content.

Now that I'm with BlogHer, I am a little more limited about my reviewing capacity, but their rules state:
"You may also accept for free and review any product(s) with a retail value of under $40 (U.S.) as long as you properly disclose that you were given the product."
So, I am disclosing that I will review these free books, and am recommending that if you are interested in free books, you might want to check out this program, even if you're with BlogHer.

I review for Thomas Nelson Book Review Bloggers

27 comments:

Our Family Is His said...

They ship pretty quickly, in most cases. I am enjoying it a lot. One thing they stress is, be honest. If you don't like the book, let your readers know. I have liked all but one of the books I have reviewed. I tried really hard to like the one that I had to give a negative review about. Have fun adding to your library. I can't wait to see which books you review and what you think about them.

Melissa said...

Just a quick question.... Are these religious books or regular fiction/non-fiction?

Melissa

Our Family Is His said...

Christian fiction, non-fiction, children, business, and biographies.

Natballs said...

I quickly went through the site; Are they ALL Christian related?

Guinevere said...

That looks neat... thanks for posting the link. Maybe not all readers will be interested, but I'm looking forward to your book reviews.

Guinevere said...

I applied to join too; the "This is Your Brain in Love" book looks interesting.

Emily said...

Natballs, it looks like a half and half mix of spiritual and business/culture. It looks like it changes a lot, based on what they are publishing. If there's nothing on their site you would be interested in, I wonder if other publishing companies do the same thing.

Elizabeth said...

For another way to get "free" books, I suggest you look into Paperback Swap. Instead of buying books I want now I put them on my wishlist at paperbackswap and am notified when they are available. I have gotten $35 brand new books there for "free" (just the cost of swapping my own books, which I usually pay 10 cents for at a garage sale). For more info check out my post about it at http://trenchesofmommyhood.blogspot.com/2009/10/frugal-friday_23.html

Amber said...

This seems really interesting! My blog isn't about reading at all, but I bet I could squeeze in a review every so often. Do they check how many followers/readers your blog has before sending you the books or does it not matter?

Thanks :)

Amber said...

Same Amber, I wasn't signed in before. I wanted to add that I doubt anyone would be irritated with the review even if you did "displace your regular content" :) Though I guess you never really know!

Captain Cleavage said...

LOL emily I just signed up for this about an hour ago! I hope they say yes even though I don't as many hits on my blog as you :)good luck and can't wait for the reviews!

vm said...

What ever happened to just becoming a loyal patron of your good old-fashioned local library? Maybe they don't have religious books...I don't know.

Boysmom said...

I just either go to the library or purchase books for 29 cents at the thrift store. I have a huge backlog of cheap, purchased books. But I'm not a huge fan of Christian fiction, I find it to not be very well written. I'm a Catholic myself, so have no objection to religious content, I just want quality writing that isn't too reduntant in it's Christian message.

liveoncejuicy said...

If you have a blog, and are interested in reviewing books, most publishers would be happy to just send you a copy.

I've had good success with just emailing and asking politely. I list my blog, how many unique visitors I get a day (less than 100, since my blog is new) and that I also write for Suite 101 and Associated Content and would be happy to post my reviews there and on Amazon. I haven't had anyone turn me down. One publisher of a gluten free cookbook actually offered to send me all three of that author's books to review! I haven't gotten any of them yet, but they should come next week. I'm beyond excited.

Even if your blog doesn't get much traffic yet, publishers would be happy to get their books in front of even a few dozen readers who are interested in the topic for the cost of postage. You can find out the name of the publisher by looking on Amazon.

Margaret said...

Libraries are good. I love our local library. :)

But I don't get to keep the books I really love if I use the library. And they don't let me do giveaways on my blog with their books.

I've reviewed for a couple of different publishing companies and I think it's a great way to feed a bookworm like me. Also, I enjoy getting a first look at newly published books. :)

Margaret

Our Family Is His said...

VM, there's nothing wrong with going to a bookstore to purchase books. BUT, this is a wonderful way as well. It's advertising for the publisher. If they give you a book, they will sell more books. Nothing different than a commericial. You are helping them make more money and getting something in return.

I buy books at the bookstore, just not these books. Often these aren't books I would pay for. I would head to the library for them, so I get a book and they get advertising.

Emily said...

liveoncejuicy, thanks for the tip! I'll definitely try that! I'll be keeping reviews to just Sundays, but with that tip, you might be seeing more reviews...

amulbunny said...

I was on the Harper Collins First Look Program until they stopped it. Got lots of good books to read.
I too use my local library since things are tight around here. I am catching up on some BBC shows that I loved back in the 70's and now can watch again.

liveoncejuicy said...

Emily...I got it from Frugal Hacks :)

Christena said...

why aren't you going to your local library?

Our Family Is His said...

We do go to our local library. Why would anyone assume people don't use their local library just because they review books for a company. Getting a book a month is not nearly enough to fill the book need around this house. I have two sons that I read to a lot, a husband that reads, homeschooling information I want to impart on my sons, and things I enjoy reading and researching. We love the library. That's like asking why people don't go to the grocery store just because they get a sample of 10 diapers once a month. That's just not near enough for most people.

Pineapple Princess said...

Super, super cool idea!

Now following! :)

Emily said...

Our Family, yes. I never understand why people assume that doing one good thing, like reviewing free books, means excluding doing other good things, like going to the library or used book store.

Boysmom said...

To be fair, many of the Catholic writers that I like to read are not available in public libraries, so if I want to read them, I have to buy them.

Anonymous said...

The assumption that reviewing books excludes going to the library is so bizarre. What is with people?????

Emily, I respect that you are willing to allow trollish comments through. But as I've been exploring your blog and reading many of your posts I've been amazed that you don't just do a digital fumigation and get rid of 'em. Is there a website somewhere with lists of blogs that says "If you want to annoy someone and say something mean, click here!" ??
--Margaret

behindthesapphireeyes said...

Thanks for sharing this! I'm just getting my blog off the ground- not that it's exciting or interesting to begin with- but one of my goals for this new year is to read more! This is a fantastic way to do just that and build a good library at the same time.

For me, I like to be able to OWN the books, especially the non-fiction/spiritual growth/self help type books. I like to be able to highlight and write notes in the margins, which can't be done with library books. It's neat to go back months or even years later and read the things I was dealing with at that time, the notes I put in the margins and to see how my life has changed!

Thanks again Emily!

Ria said...

Thanks for the link; I might take advantage of that site, if I can find books on there that might be of interest to me. While I may not be appropriate for my main blog, I do have a blog that I devote to book reviews and the like, and I can't say I'd complain at getting some new content for that.

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