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I want to write a book review for a magazine. It looks one book will be published in August. Would the publisher give me a copy to review? Are book reviews written before the book hits store shelves?  

Dear Demetrius,

Unfortunately, the answer to your question depends entirely on the magazine you want to review for and the publisher of the book.

If you have confirmation from the magazine that they're interested in a review of the book, the publisher's marketing dept. could well agree to send you a copy, or an advance reader's copy if the review is to be written before the book is released. Much will depend on the size of the publisher and the magazine in question.

Your best bet is to first approach the magazine and see if they're even interested in a review of that particular book. They may say yes; they may say they've already assigned the review to someone else.

If they say yes, you'll have more credibility with the publisher. Few publishers will send a complimentary copy of the book to an unknown freelancer who doesn't have a commitment from a newspaper or magazine for the review.

So, first things first: find a publication who wants a review.

Good luck,
Mark David
author, The Voice of the Muse & The MoonQuest  

Writing Books

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Mark David Gerson


Happy to answer questions about writing, writer's block, publishing/self-publishing. Can answer general questions, but not available to critique work.


Published author; have taught writing for 15 years at colleges, universities and community centers in the U.S. and Canada.

Southwest Writers New Mexico Book Co-op

Author of the fantasy adventure, The MoonQuest, and the book of writing inspiration and practice, The Voice of the Muse: Answering the Call to Write. Freelanced full-time as a writer, journalist and editor for more than a decade. Published in a wide range of publications. Free inspirational e-newsletter has 1200 subscribers in more than a dozen countries.

Published Author. Published Freelance Writer. More than 15 years of teaching/coaching/consulting.

Awards and Honors
New Mexico Discovery Award 2006; Award-Winning Finalist in Visionary Fiction, the National Best Books 2007 Awards

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