While all reviews are awesome, and help readers and authors (though reviews aren’t really for authors), there are several types.
Editorial reviews are reviews that are from accepted venues, such as Kirkus. They are not reader reviews – they are reviews often written by professional commentators. They tend to be the exception to ‘should I pay for a review?’ but some people are still on the fence. Bloggers also offer professional reviews – the difference is mostly where they are published and the person doing them.
Prior to 2011, Editorial reviews often appeared in places that informed libraries and booksellers what to buy. Since 2011, many editorial review magazine projects have sprung up, and while they may have professional reviewers, with qualifications in the writing field, or are those that work with writers and have an opinion that others listen to, there are also many places that call their reviews ‘editorial’ when they are reviews, but may not strictly count as editorial in the places that use them.
Editorial reviews are most useful when trying to sell to libraries, and there are a very few places that could be considered legitimate, and Amazon do allow them. Check the TOS of each site before using them, and remember that it’s a huge chunk of change in many cases that could be better employed on a marketing project or cover refresh.
Editorial reviews have their own box on various platforms, and cannot be posted by the author themselves as a standard review.
Kai Wilson-Viola writes under various names, and in all genres. Co-founder and webmistress of the IAG site, she writes content on request of members.
She has written several books including the Ten Hour Marketing Plan and 12×12 – tutorials for social media.
When not writing, she can be found maintaining sites, designing themes, managing a charity called the Less than Three foundation, gaming, knitting or reading.