Following yesterday’s big news that Amazon is purchasing Goodreads outright, there’s been a lot of confusion, angst and concern on the interwebs. Or basically, WHAT DOES IT ALL MEEEEEEEEAN?! David Gaughran has some thoughts. Nutshell: calm down, folks. It’s probably gonna be fine.

Discerning book reviewer of excellent taste, Ms. Melanie Sokol, has just posted the first review of ASCENSION POINT in the history of the internet. If you only have time to read one line, make it the last one: “Ascension Point is a must read.”

Becoming Author

I recently got a sample of Dan Harris’s Ascension Point from I’d always assumed Indie published novels were crap, Harris’s sample proved me wrong. So, I pushed out a preliminary view of the sample about two weeks ago on my blog, “A Preliminary Review: Ascension Point by Dan Harris” and then bought the book ($4.99 on Amazon).

Harris gives a lot of information about his book at his website,, including a synopsis of Ascension Point and places to buy it.

Ascension Point is science fiction in the “it’s the future” sense of the genre, with the Seryn race, Harris mixes in a bit of fantasy. As I read through the novel, I felt more and more that it was a YA novel. Why? Luc, Neela, Abe, and Ariadne, make up the Chosen, representatives of their races to read the Book of Ascension and achieve enlightenment…

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Paid-for Amazon Reviews? Oh Dear

Both the New York Times and the Atlantic had articles on this disturbing phenomenon in the last few days. Definitely worth reading for anyone who uses Amazon, as a producer or consumer.

I completely agree with the Atlantic’s conclusion:

“Policing reviews could take time and alienate some customers, both self-published authors and reviewers, but to let reviews continue unregulated might alienate far more of them.”

Both authors and readers–but especially readers, of course–need to have faith in the honesty of the review system, for the simple fact that it’s often the prime driver behind making a purchase.

And to offer a non-literary equivalent, how happy would you be to find out that, say, Samsung had paid ten thousand people $15 each to write a five-star review of a new TV they’d brought out?

Not happy, I’d imagine.