Looking for brilliant book reviewers

By John-Paul Flintoff

This morning, I met my editor, John Mitchinson, at Unbound. I was excited to hear his thoughts about my manuscript, now that I’ve made the changes he suggested earlier in the summer.

We got into an excitable conversation about the pleasures of feedback – how scary it can be to ask for it, but (if you do ask) what fun it is to hear what somebody likes, and how you might make things even better.

Most authors only find out what their readers think AFTER publication, because they don’t know who their readers are. But I know who my readers are – because many have generously pledged support for my book already.

So I’m going to try something most authors can’t do. I’m sending out proof copies to seven would-be reviewers.

One of them could be you.


If you choose to do this, I will send you my manuscript as it currently stands, printed as a paperback book. I will customise each copy, putting your name at the front, in big letters, with my sincere thanks. (To be clear, this will cost you nothing, and is in addition to whatever edition of the book you have pledged to buy already.)

In return, I’m asking you to read the book before the end of September (it’s really short), and tell me:

  1. what you like
  2. what might make it even better.

For people who like a bit more structure, I’ll provide specific questions. But you don’t have to answer them. You can write anything – it needn’t be long, and certainly doesn’t have to be a polished essay. Just please let me hear your thoughts before the end of September 2015.


I’m not sure yet what we might do with your feedback. Some of it might be printed, under your name, on the jacket – to help promote a book you have already supported so generously. Or you might notice something silly when you’re reading, and save me from making an embarrassing mistake. (But we’re not looking for a proof-reader, to spell-check. Unbound will do that after.)


This offer is only open to people who have pledged to support the book. (If you haven’t pledged yet, you still can here.)

Proofs will be sent to the first seven people to get in touch with me. To do that, tweet me, send me a message through Facebook, or email [my two initials]@[my surname].org

Posted: August 28, 2015