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Get Paid to Read Books: 5 Ways to Make Money Reading & Reviewing

I want to show you how to get paid to read books. In fact, I know several people that make extra money with books. Ready to learn about them? Let’s dive in. 

Imagine that you are sitting in your garden, and sunbeams are gently licking your face. Lazily sipping a cold drink; you indulge in your most favorite hobby – reading a book. You could spend whole days like this. It could last forever. Oh, if only you could get paid to read books.

I’m here to tell you that you can. Well, maybe it won’t let you leave your job and become a millionaire. But you can earn a few bucks on the side doing something you enjoy. There are several different ways of making money connected with reading books. 

Learn all the ways that you can get paid to read books.

1. Get Paid To Review Books

After you’ve read a book, you think a lot about it. There’s a need for you to share an opinion about what you’ve read. You want to express how you feel about this book. Yet, it may happen that people close to you are not bookworms like you. They don’t share the passion for the particular genre you love. 

Luckily, we live in the Internet era, where you can effortlessly connect with thousands of freaks like you. With one click, you can share your opinions and insights with book lovers all around the world.

But wait…why not cash in on this? Why not share your opinion with the world and get paid? 

Too good to be true? I’m glad to tell you there are online services that will not only deliver you a free book to read but also will pay you for writing a short review on it. 

Book reviews can be an excellent source of side income. You earn on your passion, for doing things you love. Most of the sites expect the reviewers to write a 200-350 word review, which is not a great challenge, especially for an avid reader. 

Here’s a list of some online services where you can get paid to review books:

Booklist Online 

Booklist Online hires book reviewers. Before you sign up for a free trial, get familiar with their publications and writing style. Then send relevant samples of your writing to the editor of your choice. The list of editors is available here. The maximum length of a review is 175 words, and the pay is modest.

Any Subject Books 

Bookworms with an inclination to analyze everything will find a great opportunity with Any Subject Books. When you read a book from them, you will be asked to arrange your thoughts in a review written by following their form. 

What matters the most with Any Subject Books is honesty. They want you to say what you think about the book. If you’re ready to submit a thorough and fair review, you can count on an honest wage. The pay is established separately for each book.

It depends on their workload, whether they are accepting reviewers at a given moment or not. 

Kirkus Media 

Kirkus Media focuses on reviewing books from all genres. With 10,000 books reviewed or edited per year, they have plenty of work to be done. Now and then, they enrol reviewers to read and evaluate books. Their reviews are typically about 350 words.  

How to become a book reviewer for Kirkus? Submit your writing samples together with your resume and a list of genres you want to review at [email protected] If you have any previous experience, don’t forget to mention it in your email.

Online Book Club

 If you don’t feel like praising something you didn’t like, there’s good news for you: Online Book Club doesn’t pay you for a positive review, but for an honest one. You can openly say you didn’t like something. 

The pay is between $5-$60 for a review. You can make even a couple of hundred bucks per month when you establish your reviewer position.  

Ready to start your adventure with Online Books Club? Sign up for free here

Publishers Weekly 

Publishers Weekly prefer freelance book reviewers with experience, but newbies can also get a chance. Book enthusiasts will get paid to read and review books in categories such as economics, law, self-help, mystery, spirituality, and all types of religion, sports, memoirs and others. 

To apply, send a resume and a sample review of about 200 words to [email protected] You’ll find editorial formatting examples in the released Publishers Weekly reviews. In the email subject heading, write “Book Reviewing” and then the category of your interest.

The U.S. Review of Books

The length of their standard review is 250-300 words. You have 2-3 weeks to return the review. Each month you will receive a check for every review written in the previous month. 

Are you interested? Send your application by email or through regular mail. It should contain a resume, sample work, and no less than two professional references. 

Book Browse 

You apply for the position of BookBrowse.com reviewer by filling in the application form. But to save you time, before you apply, go to their site and read some of their reviews to make sure you can present an equal standard of writing. You will also have to prove this by submitting a review of at least 300 words. 

Book Browse reviewers receive modest compensation for their work as well as a byline. Usually, they write about one review per month. If you are not a resident of the U.S., you can also apply, but you have to be comfortable with reading ebooks instead of print copies. 

Upwork

Want even more opportunities to get paid to read and review books? Check out Upwork, the platform where freelancers and those who want to hire a professional for a specific type of work are connected.

Jobs for book reviews are also on the platform. When you set up your profile with a portfolio, including your review samples, you can apply for jobs, and you have a chance to be found by clients. 

Having an account on Upwork will let you offer other services according to your qualifications, like graphic designing, copyediting, proofreading, or copywriting. 

2. Get Paid To Read Books Aloud

Do you like to deeply engage in what you read, add expression and emotion to it? You can get paid to read books aloud for people who don’t have time to do this.

Busy homemakers, sales agents, teenagers, and avid readers who make use of every opportunity to devour new books. All of them eagerly listen to audiobooks. And you can earn on narrating them. 

The audiobook market is skyrocketing, and only 5% of professionally published books are in audio today. You can become an audiobook narrator working from your home. Here are some services where you can get paid to read books aloud:

ACX 

ACX is a service where audiobook narrators connect with those who want to create an audio version of their work. After signing in on ACX, you create a profile where you list your experience.

You may upload an unlimited number of samples. You can also search for books you want to narrate and take part in auditions. They take only 15 minutes.

Voices 

Want more opportunities in the voice-over industry? Create a profile on Voices.com. The site will give you a chance to get gigs for voice actors.

You don’t need to have much experience. After you upload a demo on your profile, your abilities get matched with clients’ expectations by Voice Match. Every completed job is paid via PayPal or check. 

3. Get Paid To Design Book Covers

Today there is a growing number of authors who decide to self publish their books. Many of them publish solely in ebook formats, due to the lower costs of electronic publishing.

It is not uncommon that a writer publishes several books every year. All these books need covers and someone who will design them. With basic design skills, using low cost or even free programs, you can offer book covers for self-publishing authors.

Here are some free programs you could try:

You can offer your services on freelancing sites like Upwork, Fiverr, Design Crowd, or Freelancer.

Websites like Self Pub Book Covers are also worth checking. There, authors choose a premade book cover from among 30,000 unique book covers. Once the book cover sells from the service, it is never offered for sale again. 

It even happens that authors, fascinated by the look of a book cover, buy it, and only then they start to write a book inspired by the cover.  You can learn a lot about book covers just by analyzing books from a library, bookshop, or even your bookshelf.

There are many artistic book covers, a bunch of them are minimalist in style, and still, a vast number of them are utterly pathetic. That’s why you should change the world with your designs. 

If you feel that designing book covers might be something for you, why not start right now? You’ll get confidence with time, and your designs will become better and better.

It’s risk-free: there’s no charge for uploading your work on the sites. 

4. Copyediting

How about being paid to read books while making suggestions on how to improve the text? 

If you have excellent grammar and spelling skills, you can try your hand at working as a copyeditor. 

After its author finishes a book, it needs someone with a fresh eye who will read it and see whether there are any errors, repetitions, omissions, or inconsistencies. In general, someone who will improve the overall readability and accuracy of the copy.

Copyediting jobs get outsourced by big and small publishers, magazines, websites, or indie authors. To increase your chances of getting hired, consider obtaining a Copyediting Certificate. 

This article discusses whether or not it’s worth having.

You can learn a lot about the profession from The Copyeditor’s Handbook by Amy Einsohn. Anyone who wants to work as a copy editor should also know The Chicago Manual of Style.

As The Boston Globe wrote, it’s a “guiding light for almost all published writing in America today.”

Being good at both writing and editing makes you an excellent potential author of books. There’s probably a seed of a new book in you.

If you want to cherish it and let it grow, read the guide to writing your book and earning money on it. 

5. Get Free Books For Review 

Even if you don’t find a job as a book reviewer, you can still get some free books for review. It’s a good starting point.

Many job offers for reviewers require having some experience. So why not start with writing reviews in exchange for a free book then?

Here are some of the options:

Baker Publishing

Do you enjoy Christian fiction and non-fiction books? Do you have an active book blog or a Youtube review channel that you can use to help authors promote books?

If so, you are a good match for Baker Publishing reviewer.

To join the program, fill out the application form. When you get accepted, you will receive a monthly newsletter where you can sign up for books to review. 

Moody Publishers

Apply to Moody Publishers program by filling out the registration form. After you join, you will be able to see books available for review.

Pick the one you are interested in, and they will send it to you within 7-10 days. You have 60 days to write an honest review of the entire book and post it on your blog and a consumer retail site. 

Net Galley

Being a member of Net Galley allows you to read galleys digitally on reading devices and platforms. And what are galleys? In the book trade, this is the name for new books that are not published yet. 

Ready to read and recommend such books? If so, Net Galley is open to you for free.

My Reader Review Club 

As a member of the My Reader Review Club, you can earn points. Later you can redeem them for books and bibles. 

Signing up already gives you 25 points for a good start. You can earn more points when you write reviews, invite friends, take surveys, shop at Tyndale.com or NavPress.com, and more. 

It’s a great way to earn free books not only for yourself but also for your family and friends. 

Springer 

You can get a free book when you write a review for Springer. After you log into your account, you get access to a list of books that are available for review.

It is also possible to reserve books that are not available at the moment. When you select an available book, you get immediate access to it and can read it online using Online-Reader.  

How to get a “thank you” copy from Springer? You must have a review published in an international magazine or newspaper, online speciality media, or speciality journal.

You need to provide the information where the review appears. If the book you reviewed were new (not older than three years when you obtained it online), you would get a free hard copy of the book. 

Library Thing  

The Library Thing membership is free, and you don’t have to buy anything to become a member.

Every month, Library Thing announces new batches of books available for review. You have time to apply before the given date.

Winners are chosen when the giveaway period comes to an end. You will learn whether you won a book or not from your profile page. 

There are no strict deadlines for submitting a review, though you are expected to deliver one as soon as possible. If, after 90 days from winning the book, you still haven’t written a review, it may count against you. 

Get the Most from Reading Books

As an avid reader, you don’t have to let your conscience nag you for spending so much time on reading books. Make it a source of extra income. 

Express your opinion on the books you read and make money for it when your review is published. 

Make use of your vivid imagination, and learn to design book covers. 

Employ your excellent grammar and spelling skills, that many book lovers have, and earn money on copyediting. 

Have fun using your voice and making money to read them aloud as an audiobook narrator. 

At the very least, save money on books by getting a free copy of each book you review.

There’s nothing wrong with earning on your passion for something you do anyway in your free time.

Get Paid To Read And Review Books.

3 Comments

  1. I would really like to know how to read and get paid for it because I love to read a lot, so why not get paid for it.

  2. Hi Cara,

    Adobe Spark is a useful tool that I personally use to design cover pages of my textbooks. Other online money-making applications like Library Thing, Springer, My Reader Review Club that you have mentioned seems to be an interesting way to make quick money. I’m planning to give it a try.

  3. Helpful indeed. I’m from South Africa so I wonder if the online services you suggest here are a good fit for me to get paid to read books. Nonetheless, thank you for sharing this information. It’s very insightful.

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