Reviewers Agreement

We are very grateful to the people who review books for the various review sites on The purpose of all our book reviews is to help readers find the best books for their needs or tastes. We do not post negative, hurtful reviews. If a book is poorly researched or written, or has other flaws such that we cannot recommend it, we will not post a review of that book. It may simply be that in our experience, the kind of readers who seek books to suit their tastes at are not the audience the author and publisher of that book had in mind.

We will give every book a chance. If the first person to review a book does not think it should be reviewed--for whatever reason--we will send the book to a second reviewer without letting the second reviewer know that there was a first reviewer, so that the book will be read without preconceptions. If the second reviewer also feels that the review does not belong on, no review of it will be posted.

There will be no negative reviews embarrassing to authors and editors posted on

What does it take to be a reviewer for

A love of books, wide reading in the kind of books you would like to review, and--unless you are one of our review columnists--the ability to write a review in 200-500 words that gives the potential reader a good idea of what a book is about and what appeal it has, without "spoiling" the book for that reader.

A sense of honor and responsibility. We expect that reviewers for will not violate the trust of the authors and publishers who send us books to review. You will not pass the review copy around to other people before a book is published, nor, if it is an electronic copy, ever make copies for other people, before or after the official publication date.

You must have a reliable e-mail connection and be able to receive book-length attachments.

You must be at least eighteen years old or have the permission of your parent or guardian if you are under eighteen. The reason that the age limit is eighteen rather than thirteen is that you are licensing rights under this agreement--see below. Click here for a consent form for the parent or legal guardian of a reviewer under eighteen.

You must file the Reviewers Agreement Form before you can submit reviews to Reviewers who are under eighteen must file both the Reviewers Agreement Form and the Parental Consent Form.

You do not need HTML (web design) skills to review books for us. The Gatemasters and Assistant Gatemasters of the review sites will explain how to submit your reviews for posting to our website.

What do I get for reviewing books for

Satisfaction. Your name and copyright on your review. The knowledge that you are helping readers to find books that they will enjoy.

Free books! Often you will get to read books before they are available to the general public. If you receive a print copy, it is yours to keep, to give away, or to sell, just as is true of any paper book you buy. However, the copyright (right to copy--that is what "copyright" means) is not yours. You are expected to honor the rights of the author and publisher. The transfer of an individual paper copy of a book from one person to another in no way infringes on copyright. Making a copy of an electronic book does.

Because it involves receiving advance copies of books before publication, book reviewing is a sacred trust. Any reviewer who makes and distributes copies of a book sent to him or her for review, or who allows a third party to read a review copy before the book is officially published will be removed from the ranks of book reviewers.

We do not pay for book reviewing on However, you may begin as a book reviewer and work your way up to Assistant Gatemaster, at which point you will have the opportunity to participate in our Revenue Sharing plan.

What is the procedure for reviewing a book?

One of our Gatemasters or Assistant Gatemasters will query you by e-mail to see if you have the time and interest to review an available book. If you respond positively, the book will be sent to you, usually as an e-mail attachment, occasionally as paper text by snailmail. Paper text books will be sent snailmail only to reviewers who reside in the same country as the person who sends it--usually either the author or the editor of the book. You may expect that most books intended for paper text publication will nevertheless be distributed for review in electronic format, because electronic format is fast and cheap to transmit.

You will be asked to review the book according to the posted guidelines for that particular kind of book, and post your review as instructed by the Gatemaster who assigned it to you within two weeks of receiving the book. You must submit your review electronically even if the book came to you as print text.

The Gatemaster will help you put your review into the proper format, and post it on our website.

Who owns copyright in the reviews I write?

own copyright in your words, the words you write to review the book. A copyright notice in your name will appear on your review.

You do not own copyright in the book you review, the page design of our website, or anything other than your own words.

What rights do I grant to Sime~Gen(tm) Inc. and

By submitting a book review for publication on any review site, you license to Sime~Gen Inc. and the right to keep that review posted for a period of one year from the date you submitted it. Sime~Gen Inc. and may, if the book becomes unavailable, or for any other reason at their sole discretion, remove the review before the year is up.

During the licensing period, you may not post the entire review you have written for on another website. You may write a review to be posted on more than one site and post it to as well provided you add something to the review you post to that is unique to our site. The reason for this requirement is to give book authors incentive to link to their reviews on our site--to encourage them to do so, our site gives them something extra. On the other hand, you may link to your review on from any other website, anywhere, without obtaining permission.

When the licensing period is over, you may at any time request that your review be removed from our site. If you do not so request, Sime~Gen Inc. and will at their sole discretion keep the review available on the site so long as they determine it is of use to potential readers.

You are free to post the complete review on any website without obtaining permission if either has removed the review from its site or the licensing period is over.

What if I want to stop reviewing books for

Simply let your Gatemaster know that you would like your name removed from the list of reviewers, and it will be. However, the rights you have granted Sime~Gen Inc. and as described above remain in effect.

You may also temporarily remove your name from the list of reviewers, and come back when that family crisis or trip to Europe or training course or honeymoon or whatever it is is over. All you have to do is keep your Gatemaster apprised of your situation.

What if I don't want to review a particular book I am offered?

Explain to your Gatemaster your reason, and the book will be directed to another reviewer. There are many legitimate reasons for not wanting to review a particular book: you may know that you just can never get into books by that author, although other people can. The author may be a good friend, and you know you cannot be objective. You may be tied up with "life" for the next two weeks, and just not have time to read and review right now. Whatever the reason, let your Gatemaster know. Refusing one particular book, for whatever reason, will not take you off the list of potential reviewers.

How do I become a book reviewer for

Send an e-mail message to, explaining which review site you are interested in reviewing for and providing your qualifications. We will work with first-time reviewers. If you have always thought you would like to try reviewing books, here is your chance.

After the Reviews Gatemaster has accepted you as a reviewer, you must file the Reviewers Agreement before any books are assigned to you to review.

Can I move from book reviewing to a position of more responsibility?

Yes, indeed! We already have several different kinds of review sites--after a time, you may wish to suggest a new one, with yourself as Gatemaster. Or you may learn the ropes as an Assistant Gatemaster. Also, people drop out of such positions from time to time. Stay in communication with your Gatemaster to find out when such positions become open. In the meantime, please read our
Gatemasters Agreement, so that you will know what such work entails, and what advantages it provides.


Nothing in this Agreement shall be construed to constitute the parties herein as joint venturers nor shall any similar corporate or individual relationship be presumed to exist between them.

The terms of this agreement may be changed from time to time as necessity arises.

Agreeing to become a Reviewer or continuing as a Reviewer at constitutes agreement with the terms set forth on this page, as updated. All Reviewers will be notified of updates.

Where Sime and Gen meet, creativity happens.

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