Look at Book Reviewing and Amazon

Thirty-one comments are under the book called, Revealing Heaven: The Eyewitness Accounts That Changed How a Pastor Thinks About the Afterlife which I reviewed on March 2, 2013. Controversial books like this one prove that book reviewing is more than Amazon ratings.

Most who commented are unbelievers or deceived believers, and some are firm believers. The author himself is an Episcopalian priest. I haven’t read all 31 comments, but this last one is interesting:

This is one reason why I do not subscribe to any religion. If God or Jesus or Buddha has some eternal truth for me, let him appear to me in person and tell me himself, instead of sending other people to do it for him. And that includes the people who wrote the Bible, who I have no more reason to believe than similar information… from here.

If you are a blogger, you can review books for free provided you post the review on Amazon or some other site and on your blog. A simple sign-on with Amazon can also allow you to read reviews and leave comments on books such as this one. For a long time, I was reading well over six books a month, but book reviewing requires thick skin. Sadly, some Christian authors and readers miss the point of writing.

As a book reviewer, I received harsh responses from those who claimed to be Christian based on a poor review rating. It should not be about your favorite author. Negative reviews, as proven by the movie, 50 Shades of Grey, only help a book or movie. People generally don’t like being told what to read or see, and in response, end up buying or seeing the book or movie anyway. 50 Shades had sold out shows on Valentines Day. Instead of talking about the points in the novel or book, some Christians have a huge blind-spot and defend the author. In this case, my negative review brought on great discussion. Near Death Experiences are a big subject in both the secular and believer’s world.

Even Brigham Young University, in an article I can’t find now, was teaching how to raise Amazon’s ratings systems for the Book of Mormon as an evangelical tool. Christians can do better in how they respond to reviews and to reviewers. Rather than focus on the ratings and in selling your book, discuss the story’s message. Talk about the disagreeable points. Influence people.

Your first priority is not selling your book.

It should be in relationships with your readers and helping them into a relationship with Christ. It should be in prayer for the unbeliever or in how a believer grows through your novel or book.

That’s why platform building as a writer began to make me feel shallow. That’s why I reduced my book reviewing to four times a year with TRC Magazine. I wanted my life to be about Christ, not about how many books I’m selling or how I rate on Amazon or in trying to please authors who only care about book ratings and not people. That may seem harsh, but it’s how this book reviewer began to feel after a couple of years of receiving free books and dealing with the artist side of authors.

I needed to change; hence, Cataclysm Missions International.

So here’s another opportunity for you to reach people for Christ.

Please be gentle. They do not share our values.


About Nikole Hahn

A new appointee with WorldVenture, a missionary organization, who works at FBC Prescott as a church secretary and has joined the world of cybermissions. You can partner with her in ministry, by giving at worldventure.com/nhahn.

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