Remember the guy who wasn't sure if he was willing to send a manuscript to an agent cause she might not dispose of it safely? He was pretty sure a five pound return mailer was the only safe course of action, even though it meant said agent had to stand in line at the post office.
I thought of that purse-lipped, deeply suspicious gent when I read this.
Anyone with an ounce of brains or experience on either side of the pr equation can tell you the email this dame got was a FORM LETTER. Those kinds of offers are as old as dirt and twice as boring.
Here's a MAJOR clue for everyone who gets "free books". Publicists pull up a list marked "fiction outlets" or "romance outlets" or "true crime outlets in Romance, Arkansas" from their ten thousand name data base and they send a form email. Or a book. Or an offer. Sometimes all three.
They are ecstatic if 10% of the places they send books even mention them, let alone say something akin to "you should buy this". The idea that a reviewer or a blogger cares about keeping a publisher happy demonstrates a very skewed idea of how publishing works. Talk to any publicist in any publishing company. They're pretty sure their job is to keep reviewers happy.
I don't know any publisher EVER who stopped sending books to a newspaper for a bad review. Michiko Kakutani sure isn't worried about that.
I think it's pretty funny that Kim Bofo thinks she can be bought for a hundred dollar gift certificate and other people can be too.
(She's right about one thing though--I'm both cheap and easy. Send over Against the Day, and I WILL discuss it. You can even save yourself the cost of a gift certificate.)
The fact that I bought the last book I raved about doesn't mean comments about the books I didn't buy myself are less objective. I've never traded cash for a Jack Reacher novel; the Merc buys them for me. I pay to be a member. Sort out the objectivity there.
What about when the author is your friend and gives you a copy? Or you buy a copy of your friend's book at Amazon?
Miss Snark will step in to save the day: How about we just read what you have to say. If you look and sound like a shill for crap, we'll only assume you've been paid off rather than you're a bad writer or an idiot with no taste. You can make the same assumption about me.