How to Get Paid Writing Book Reviews

If you’re an avid reader who loves to share your opinions and thoughts about the books you read, have you ever considered getting paid for it? Because believe it or not, many writers avail of book review writing as a source of income. Although some may think that there is no market out there willing to pay for such a service, the truth is that companies are always looking for professional writers with strong writing skills and an expansive knowledge of various genres and topics. If this sounds like something you would be interested in doing, then keep reading; this blog post will give you all the tips on getting paid for writing book reviews.

Publishers that Will Pay You for Book Reviews

One of the most popular ways to get paid for book reviews is by working with publishers. Various websites and publications offer this opportunity, ranging from large publishing houses to smaller independent presses. Some common examples include Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Booklist Online. When you work directly with publishers, they often pay either an up-front fee or royalties depending on the written review type.

Online Book Club

Average Pay: $5 to $60 per review

When you land on the Online Book Club website, you’re greeted with the refreshing truth: this isn’t a wild get-rich-quick plan. You won’t hit the jackpot or be able to quit your day job, and that’s okay.

Just so you know, your first review won’t earn you any cash, but you’ll snag a complimentary book in return for an authentic review. Once you’ve completed your first review, you’ll gain access to paid review opportunities along with your no-cost read.

Online Book Club’s emphasis on honesty is refreshing, as they openly admit that their platform isn’t for everyone. But if you love reading and discovering new authors, this could be a great fit. Creating an account is easy – just choose your preferred book format and provide your PayPal email for payment. From there, browse their selection of books waiting to be reviewed and prepare for some literary exploration!

U.S. Review of Books

Average Pay: Pay is not listed, but all books are free.

If you’re a freelance writer who loves reading and reviewing books, you might want to check out The U.S. Review of Books. They offer an excellent opportunity for you to get paid for your passion.

To apply, you only need to send your resume, samples of your previous book reviews, and two professional references. Once your application is accepted, you can start writing paid reviews! You get to pick which books you’d like to review, and titles are assigned based on the order of requests and your skills.

U.S. Review of Books offers free books and monthly pay, but make sure you stick to the two to three-week deadline and keep your final review between 250 to 300 words. Don’t be afraid to give your honest opinion – negative criticism is welcomed as long as you stay factual and unemotional. Payment details aren’t listed, but you can expect to get paid on the fifth of each month. So what are you waiting for? Get reviewing and get paid!

Kirkus Media

Average Pay: Pay is not listed, but all books are free.

Kirkus Media is a well-respected book review service that pays freelance writers to read and critique books. Their readers come from diverse backgrounds in academia, publishing, media, and other fields. All reviewers should have an extensive background in reading different genres and topics, so you’ll need to provide proof of your credentials.

To get started with Kirkus Media’s reviews, you’ll first need to fill out their application form, which includes a writing sample. Please note that the criteria for acceptance aren’t listed on their site; they don’t promise to accept all applicants. Once you’re assigned a book review project, expect it within ten business days after your acceptance. The pay rate isn’t listed on the website but can be discussed during the application.

Women’s Review of Books

Average Pay: Published reviews $100

If you’re looking for another opportunity to get paid to write book reviews, you might want to consider Women’s Review of Books. This publication is a project of the Wellesley Centers for Women that focuses on covering books written by women.

Applicants must have an extensive background in reading and writing about literature and knowledge of feminist issues and topics. To apply, you’ll need to submit a résumé, a cover letter, two writing samples (at least one should be a book review), and three references. Payment for accepted submissions varies depending on the length of the review. Usually, it ranges from $100 and up per published review. You can expect payment within 30 days after publication, so don’t forget to keep an eye on the publication’s website.

Booklist Online

Average Pay: $15 per review; beware of the $5 review rejection fee

If you’re a librarian or just a book lover seeking stellar recommendations, you have to check out Booklist. This magazine, created by the American Library Association, is a treasure trove of book reviews with around 8,000 new reviews annually! Can you imagine how much time, effort, and talent it would take to produce that many reviews? Well, Booklist relies on a team of amazing freelancers to help them out. What’s really cool about Booklist is that their reviews only require a maximum of 175 words each!

Before you apply, make sure to carefully read their guidelines to ensure you’re a good fit. It’s worth noting that as of early June 2023, they aren’t accepting new reviewer applications. However, don’t let this discourage you, as they plan to reopen applications again at the end of June during the ALA’s Annual Conference and Exhibition ’23. If you’re selected as a reviewer, you’ll receive $15 per review, but there’s a $5 fee for any rejected reviews. It’s important to keep in mind that payment is only dispersed once your review is published in print or online, so be patient—it may take a little while to get paid.

Publisher’s Weekly

Average Pay: Paid an “honorarium per review.”

Publisher’s Weekly may sound familiar, and that’s because it is one of the oldest book review sources around. This publication specializes in reviews for books related to the publishing industry, such as books about authorship and books by authors who are part of the industry.

Regarding payment, PW pays an honorarium per review – but they don’t list any specifics on their website. However, if you’re accepted as a reviewer, you’ll get to choose from over 150 titles requiring monthly critique. So make sure you read up on Publisher’s Weekly’s guidelines before submitting your application. With this opportunity, reviewers need to be aware of their deadlines; PW typically needs reviews within two weeks of accepting a title for review.

Book Browse

Average Pay: Write one review a month and receive a byline and a modest payment

For the past 20 years, BookBrowse has been your go-to source for expertly curated book reviews. Their picks are carefully selected for their ability to captivate, entertain, and enlighten readers about our world and ourselves.

And let’s face it, who doesn’t love a good book? With BookBrowse, you’ll have the chance to read and review the best titles. Plus, you’ll earn some extra cash doing something you enjoy. It’s the perfect opportunity to feed your mind and your wallet simultaneously.

BookBrowse is currently accepting applications for book reviewers, but be sure to familiarize yourself with their reviews before applying. To impress them, submit quality sample reviews that are at least 300 words long. While BookBrowse welcomes applicants from overseas, be aware that receiving print copies of books may be challenging as most of their reviewers and publishers are based in the USA.

As for pay, you can expect to write one review a month and receive a byline and a modest payment. While the amount isn’t specified, it’s still an excellent opportunity to get some extra cash while doing something you love – reading and reviewing books!

Vetting Book Review Companies

Finally, before you apply to any of the book review companies listed above, it’s important that you do your research. Not every company is reputable; some may be downright scams. To ensure you get a good deal, check out user reviews and ask for feedback from current or former reviewers.

Besides avoiding scams, another thing to look out for when vetting book review companies is their pay rate. Rates vary widely amongst publishers and websites, so make sure you know how much money you can expect to earn with each one. Be wary of low-paying gigs, as they usually don’t provide enough incentive to write quality reviews. Ultimately, don’t hesitate to negotiate if the offer doesn’t meet industry standards.

A Quick Guide to Writing a Book Review

Now that you know where to find the best book-reviewing gigs, let’s talk about how to write a great review. Here are some steps you can take to craft compelling and insightful reviews:

  1. Read the book thoroughly: This part is essential for accurately reviewing the material. Taking notes as you read will help make your writing process easier later on.
  2. Research similar books: See what other readers have said about the author or genre, and use that information to shape your own opinion.
  3. Create an outline: Organize your thoughts into a cohesive argument by outlining key points before writing.
  4. Write your review: Focus on connecting ideas between different parts of the book: Avoid writing a summary of the plot.
  5. Proofread and edit: Make sure to proofread your work for typos and grammatical errors before submitting it.

Now that you know how to find the best book review companies and the steps to write an engaging review, you should be set up for success in the online book reviewing world!

Other Companies that Pay for Book Reviews

  • Reedsy Discovery 
  • Any Subject Books 
  • Amazon Fiverr

If you’re still interested in finding more opportunities to get paid for book reviews, here are some other companies that might be worth checking out:

Reedsy Discovery is a platform that helps authors find new readers and reviewers. They work with both self-published authors and large publishing houses, so there’s plenty of diverse material to choose from. They also offer payment for accepted submissions, though their website doesn’t specify the amount.

Any Subject Books is an online service that connects authors with book reviewers who will provide honest feedback about their novels. You can apply to become a reviewer by signing up on their website and submitting your credentials for review. They offer various payment options, so make sure you read the fine print before submitting your application.

Lastly, Amazon Fiverr is a great way to get paid for book reviews. It’s essentially an online marketplace where freelancers pitch their services to clients who need them. You can list your own book review services here and set the rates yourself. However, it’s important to note that not all books available on Amazon are eligible for reviews. Before applying, read up on what books can be reviewed and which can’t.

Get to Reading!

Reading and writing book reviews is a great way to earn some extra income and have fun at the same time. There are lots of opportunities out there for readers who want to turn their hobby into a money-making endeavor. Whether by joining book review websites, signing up for Amazon Vine, using freelance platforms, connecting with book publishers directly, or creating your own blog, you can make money from your love of reading. So why not take advantage of the opportunity? Start writing reviews and get paid for them today! Who knows – even if it starts out as a side hustle, your enthusiasm might lead to a full-time job. With determination and hard work, anything is possible – so why not start now? Happy reading and writing!

Key Takeaways:

  • Book reviewing is a lucrative way to make money while expressing your love of literature.
  • Online book review companies such as BookBrowse, Reedsy Discovery, Any Subject Books, and Amazon Fiverr are great opportunities to get started.
  • Proper research on the company you’re applying to is essential to avoid scams and ensure you’re getting paid a fair rate.
  • Writing a good review requires careful reading and understanding of the material, researching similar books for comparison, creating an outline, and proofreading your work before submitting it.
  • With determination and hard work, book reviewing can become more than just a side hustle – so why not start now? Happy reading and writing!


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