Maybe heaven on earth does exist.
A well-written book is its own reward, but getting paid to read is like having your cake and eating it too. If you’ve never reviewed books before, it might be hard to find avenues to get your foot in the door, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be a book writer or high-ranking reviewer to get paid to read. In fact, you don’t have to have any experience at all, thanks to Online Book Club.
How To Sign Up:
You head to Online Book Club, create an account and wait to be approved, which usually takes less than a day. Then, you must select your book format preferences, choose a book from their available selection, download it (according to their instructions), then submit your review.
The first review isn’t paid, but every review after that will garner you between $5-$60. The website doesn’t state how they determine which reviews will garner which payment, so that’s something to inquire about, before hand. The site owner Scott Hughes, also holds regularly raffles for Amazon gift cards, in addition to the review fee. According to the website, he gives away $1000 per month, through the raffles.
Screenshot of Online Book Club.
If you’re thinking that this sounds too good to be true, don’t worry I did too. So I did a little digging. From what I’ve found, Online Book Club seems to be legit. It has an “excellent” Trust Pilot rating and dozens of positive reviews by people are seem to be happy with the service.
There’s also a page dedicated to Online Book Club’s legitimacy right on its website. According to the page, it’s been around for 10 years and has over 1 million members. The owner, Scott Hughes, also cheekily attempts to shut down any naysayers by pointing out the fact that he links to his real, verified Facebook page where anyone could run and tattle to his wife — cute.
You can read part of the the page below.
Screenshot of Online Book Club’s FAQ page. Full breakdown here.
In an effort to provide fair and balanced information, I also looked for criticisms of the platform. Trust Pilot didn’t turn up many, but there are independent reviews searchable online. The most common complaint I found is that they have strict standards for their reviews.
Curious about their guidelines, I signed up and looked over their FAQ and boy, are they detailed. Even more detailed than Kirkus Reviews — one of the most respected review companies out there. Knowing how much Kirkus pays, (which I can’t disclose because of an NDA) and how much Online Book Club pays, I can see why someone would feel a little miffed at the amount of work being requested. But I haven’t found any nefarious practices, so far.
Ultimately, it all comes down to whether or not you think possibly getting paid as little as $5 to read and review an entire novel is worth your time.
Personally, if I was a brand new writer, I’d definitely give it a try. If nothing else, you’ll walk away with a free book and writing sample that could lead to more work. So go forth, read, and prosper! And if you decide to try the system out, leave a comment and let me know how it went!