Beta Readers

Skip to main content

Beta Readers

What is a Beta Reader? A beta reader gets first reading of novels BEFORE publication. Here are a few readers; get yourself listed, and get free books in exchange for reviews.

  • Cristina Diaz (horror, thriller, romantic suspense, poetry, sci-fi, fantasy and crime)
  • Richard Bunning (speculative fiction)
  • Katharine Larson (speculative, fantasy, romance)
  • Samantha Grayson (fantasy books but especially those relating to fairies, unicorns, mythology, magic, metaphysical, supernatural etc. I read both adult and child fantasy books)
  • Kathryn (most genres)
  • Juliette (romance, fantasy, horror, mystery, historical. No erotica)
  • Julie Whiteley (romances and mysteries, historical fiction, history, biographies, and true crime and entertainment books)
  • free review service

So, what's the deal?

As a beta reader, you read and own a free book or ebook of your choice, you respond with a short paragraph about the book (which may or may not be quoted on the back cover, if published). This checklist may prove useful:


  • Is the book solid?
  • Clear story arc or theme?
  • Appropriate title?
  • Need copyediting?
  • Consistent style?
  • Well-paced?
  • Emotional impact?
  • No extraneous material?
  • No gaps or unexplained leaps?
  • Compelling, interesting, or just OK?

If you spot errors, tell the author separately from the review (note the page and line). Your advice may help an author toward full publication.

In a nutshell: Once you get listed as a beta reader, you choose among the free ebooks. Write a blurb. You can be part of the process. Your reading acuity will improve.

Here is the current list of beta books. AUTHORS! LIST YOUR BOOKS HERE. Click a title to send a request to me, and I'll send you the url to download the beta book.

    • The Martian Testament, a sci-fi novel, visiting the settlements there, discovering the humanity and inhumanity, the survivability— and the intrigue to win control of the whole planet, but with luck and pluck, sneaking back toward Earth to blow the whole scheme wide open. Also speculation about the missing fifth planet, fragments of which abound on the Mars surface.
    • The Basement, a Peace Corps Volunteer returns to find protest marches, a whole new generation rising up, and spiritual confusion. Half the book is remembering the African experience, the other half re-orienting in the new world of activism. With drawings.
    • Matilda, novel by Mary Shelley, the author who wrote Frankenstein. In this next novel, long lost and only recently published, she delves into the Gothic strain of dark emotionalism, and a punishment for no crime (incest theme). Mary Shelley herself never saw it in print, so was not able to make changes to the original manuscript, which her father refused to permit to be published.
    • (upcoming) The Last American Housewife, pieces of a marriage, is the decades-long story of a marriage and the forces that eventually drove them apart. By the author of the prize-winning novel The Family Secret.

    • French for Food Lovers, a little vocabulary book of French words relating to food and cooking. You don't have to be French to benefit from it. (Native Francophones only, please)
    • Italian for Opera Lovers, a little vocabulary book of Italian terms. Since Italians invented opera, they created most of the techniques that now sustain an independent art form not seen for over a thousand years. (Native Italian speakers only, please)
    • Retitled: Yiddish You Say? Nu? a 90pp. vocabulary book of Jewish/Yiddish terms, including taboo expressions— well, that depends on your own definition; this little book might move your boundaries of temperament or judgment. (Jewish reviewers only, please)

    • Eight 2 Two, short poems and a puzzle. Two poems are translations of Pablo Neruda poetry. Most are short pieces.

ERRORS: Note down page and line. Write the correct version on paper or text file (the ebook itself is not editable).

Hey, have you read enough books to consider writing your own? Go on, you can do it; everybody has at least one book in them, IMHO.



CLAUDINE MICHEL, Center for Black Studies, Univer­sity of Califor­nia, Santa Barbara

ELLEN JACKSON, Writer, popular­izer of science for young adults. “Birdie's feedback was excel­lent and the comments were perti­nent and helpful. I highly recom­mend Birdie Newborn as a book doctor.”

Any publisher is delighted to find someone bringing a new audience to supplement their established market niche. Anna B. Brooks


Bandanna Books • Santa Barbara
Copyright © 2013 Bandanna Books