The Latest Goodreads Review Bombing Scandal

Targeting Authors of Color

Anne Marble

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Just when I thought I’d seen the most insane author behaving badly scandals of the year, a new one arose — involving “alleged” tampering of Goodreads reviews.

A woman with brown hair tied up in a bun stands against a brick hall, holding an open book to her face. She is wearing a dark jacket.
(Source: Photo by Siora Photography on Unsplash.)

If you follow book news on social media, you may have seen a lot of posts discussing a new controversy — a debut author manipulating Goodreads to hurt fellow debut authors. Not to mention posts about Reylo fandom.

The author wasn’t named at first, and I was going to keep it that way. At first. But by now, enough people have named the author.

The author is Cait Corrain, whose debut book — a spicy queer space opera — is coming out through Del Rey, a part of Penguin Random House. Just the sort of book I might have picked up. So disappointing…

The True Champion

On Tuesday, author Xiran Jay Zhao posted a lengthy thread. In their post, they revealed that several fake “people” were one-starring upcoming debut books on Goodreads to influence their ratings. This sort of manipulation is known as review bombing.

Meanwhile, very suspiciously, another debut author’s book kept getting upvoted. That author is white. Most of the authors being review-bombed were people of color (POC).

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Anne Marble

I’m a writer and a copy editor with experience in editing science and engineering articles. Click Lists to find my most popular articles. And hidden gems.