Disgraced publisher Linda Daly wrote a half-dozen truly horrible novels that she printed through her now bankrupt Light Storm publishing company. Her books each have garnered two or three five star Amazon reviews… each from an author she has published. Naturally, none of those authors disclose in their reviews that Daly is their publisher.
Micki Peluso is one of those authors who left rave reviews on Daly's books and when I called her on her blatant and undisclosed conflict-of-interest, this was her rationalization:
I would think as a "professional" writer, you would realize that reviews posted on amazon are by customers , not readers and do not qualify as true book reviews, nor does the famous "five stars" mean anything, except to boost the morale of a newly published writer.
Sadly, she's not the only bonehead who abuses Amazon Reviews. Clueless wanna-bes like her have turned what was supposed to be a forum for honest reader reviews into one big, pathetic circle jerk….just so they can delude themselves into believing that their awful books are good and maybe trick someone who isn't a member of their family into buying their unreadable swill.
I wish this was an isolated, pathetic incident. But it's not.
It's common on places like the writer forums on Kindleboards to see wanna-bes offering to give five-star reviews to other wanna-be in return for five-star reviews of their own work. In the process, these dimwits don't see that they are totally diminishing the value of the Amazon reviews that they so desperately seek and that they are making it impossible for potential customers to believe that any reader reviews are authentic.
Please do me a small favor. Mark the fake Amazon reviews on Rebel Dove, Sea of Lies, and Doves Migration, as unhelpful. Maybe disreputable individuals like Linda Daly and wrong-headed authors like Micki Peluso, Stacie Coller, and Patricia Guthrie will begin to get the point that readers don't appreciate lies and deception.