Have you read “Free Country” by George Mahood?

Learn more about TimEven though I just started putting together the Discovery List, a spreadsheet that showcases outstanding self-published books, I keep finding hidden gems among the books that have been added so far.

Case in point: Free Country: A Penniless Adventure the Length of Britain, written by George Mahood, and discovered by Reg Spittle.

Cover for Free Country by George MahoodIn a recent blog post, Reg waxes enthusiastic about this humorous story. Here are some of his thoughts:

Wearing just underwear emblazoned with the British flag, George Mahood and his buddy left Land’s End in southwest England without a penny, determined to bicycle to the northern tip of Great Britain. They would rely on the generosity and good hearts of the people, from pub owners and accommodation hosts to the police.

If you have not read a book by George Mahood, you are in for a treat. His writing in Free Country is even more entertaining than his story’s premise and is powered by humor and down-to-earth human touches.

Read Free Country today! It’s available on Amazon.

Have you read this, or another great self-published book lately? What did you think? Add your own book review or Discovery Report, and your input will help us keep finding excellent reads!

A time-travel romance novel for the ages

Learn more about TimThanks to all authors and book reviewers who have contributed to our Discovery List so far!

Each week, I feature one of the best self-published books we have on the list so far, based on reviews.

Have you written (or discovered) a great self-published book? Add it to the Discovery List, and it might be the next book featured here.

This week, the best book on the list is…

Cover for Partners in Time by Stevie Turner

(Review: John Maberry of Views from Eagle Peak gives it 4 stars.)

Here’s a taste:

John Finbow, a successful writer, and his wife Kay move into Southcombe Rectory, a large Victorian house that has been empty since the 1960s. It had previously been owned by the Cuthbertson family who had lived there for generations. Their marriage is under strain, as John, 39 would like children before he gets too old, but Kay, 34, does not.

When John is working in his study soon after moving in, he is disturbed by the sight of a young woman who appears out of the blue on his sofa. Emily Cuthbertson, whose old bedroom is now John’s study, was 25 at the time of her death and the youngest of 8 offspring of the late Reverend Arthur Cuthbertson and his wife Delia. Emily had died in 1868 but is now unwilling to leave behind her old life on earth, due to having missed out on a family of her own whilst being a companion to her widowed mother. Emily is still desperate for a husband and children, and John is the answer to her dreams.

One hundred and thirty years separate them. Will Emily and John’s love survive time’s relentless march?

Discover it for yourself on Amazon!

Have you discovered a self-published book that deserves a spot on the Discovery List? Whether you wrote it, reviewed it, or just discovered it, you can add it here and help others make discoveries of their own.

Who’s your favorite self-published author?

Learn more about TimHey readers!

Have you discovered any talented self-published authors lately, or read any self-published books that really stand out in your mind?

Let us know by adding a Discovery Report!

I’ll add it to the Discovery List, a spreadsheet full of self-published books I’m putting together, for all to see and have a read themselves.

There are so many excellent self-published books out there, and I want to make sure readers can find them. It’s such a shame to find a good book buried under hundreds of thousands of others in Amazon search results—if you can find it at all—so this is my way of helping deserving books stand out.

Please add your Discovery Report so we can all make a discovery of our own!

Book reviews: who needs ’em, anyway? A quick answer

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Looking for your big break as an author? Try delving into the world of book reviews.

by Timothy Pike

You may already know that book reviews are important. But just how important are they? For self-published authors, I believe they’re crucial.

Since most “indie” authors don’t have access to large budgets, sales teams, and mainstream media outlets, we instead turn to the most powerful tool we have—the collective voice of book lovers and literary enthusiasts from all corners of the internet—to give our books the boost they deserve.

This is my latest project: putting together a list of self-published books that are totally worth the read. I call it the Discovery List, and I’m taking recommendations now and adding them to the list.

Want to add one to our list? You can do that here.

Also, give this blog a follow if you’re interested in discovering new books every week! Once we’ve got 5,000 followers (currently 4,700), and 100 books on the list, I’ll make the list available to download.

But what’s so great about a review, anyway? After all, who really cares what someone else thinks?

Consider these points:

1. A positive review says, I’ve read this book, and trust me, it’s good. This could easily sway a reader—someone who may have been on the fence before—into purchasing your book, and sudddenly…boom! You now have another reader in your orbit. This person will be more likely to buy another one of your books (maybe the next in the series?) and follow you on social media for news of your next release.

2. It creates buzz. One review may not make you an overnight sensation, but the more reviews you get, the more your name starts to sound familiar to readers—and they’ll start to associate you with quality writing. More reviews = more people talking about you = more sales = more reviews, and the cycle keeps going!

3. It’s free advertising. The more readers the reviewer has, the more people who hear about your book. This could be thousands at a time! The review also gets included in search results, so even long after it’s published, people will still be stumbling across it when they’re on “The Google” searching for their next read. The best advertising is word-of-mouth, and that’s exactly what a review is.

I’d like to get as many book reviewers and self-published authors as possible involved, so go ahead and add your book (or review) to the Discovery List today.

Let’s discover some new books together!


I’m Timothy Pike, founder of ChapterBuzz, and self-publishing coach specializing in helping you publish a beautiful book to the virtual shelves of Amazon—and even the real shelves of your local bookstore.

Where are all the book reviews hiding? I know they’re out there…

Learn more about Tim
I happen to know that there are tons of really good self-published books out there.

And book reviews, I believe, are the key to finding them.

(When I say reviews, by the way, I don’t mean the little blurbs that any old Amazon user can post as a “review,” I’m talking about people who liked your book enough to actually take the time to post an entire article on their blog or website about it.)

The thing is, there are thousands and thousands of book reviews out there—scattered across the internet on different people’s blogs and websites—but how the heck do we find them?

By asking the authors, that’s how. They know exactly where all their reviews are!

And I think it would be great to have all of this information in one place.

That’s why I’m compiling a list of self-published books (and reviews) into one big spreadsheet called the Discovery List. It’ll be your one-stop shop for the best self-published books out there—with the reviews to prove it.

Once we’ve got 5,000 followers of this blog (currently 4,700), and 100 books on the list (currently 25-ish), I’ll make the list available to download. It’ll be fun. Please give this blog a follow if you’re interested in discovering new books every week!

If you’re a self-published author, let’s put your book—and a positive review about it—front and center.

I call it your “Discovery Press Kit.” It sound fancy, but it’s actually pretty simple: it’s just the information about your book along with one positive review. As it happens, I’ve made it easy to add your Discovery Press Kit to the list.

The importance of book reviews cannot be overstated, as I’ll explain in my next blog post.

In the meantime, please feel free to add your self-published book to the list!

Author of a self-published book? We need your “Discovery Press Kit”!

Learn more about TimStanding out in the literary world is no easy feat when you’re a self-published author. If readers aren’t familiar with your work, they may be hesitant to take a chance on you.

Plus, there are so many books competing for attention that readers sometimes don’t even know where to look.

That’s why I’m putting together the Discovery List, a simple spreadsheet of self-published books that are worth the read—and worth readers’ hard-earned cash.

But I need the very people who wrote these books to let me know they exist!

If you’re the author of a self-published book, we’d love for you to add it to our Discovery List. I plan to share it with everyone once we have 100 books on the list and 5,000 readers on this blog (currently 4,700).

To really make a splash on the list, you can submit a Discovery Press Kit, which is your book’s information along with a positive review about it.

The Discovery List uses reviews and testimonials to let people know that others have already read your book and liked it. This form of “social proof” goes a long way in attracting more readers.

To submit your Discovery Press Kit, please use this page.

I’m excited to see you on the list!

Tim | About me

This romance novel is the best self-published book of the week

Learn more about TimOur Discovery List is growing, and I’m happy to announce this week’s best self-published book!

Have you written (or discovered) a great self-published book? Add it to the Discovery List, and it might be the next book featured here.

This week, the best book on the list is…

Cover for Why Not Me?: A Feeling of Millions

(Review: Aayusi of Being Me! gives it 4 stars.)

Here’s what it’s about:

A hopeless romantic, Anubhav had been looking for the love of his life. When Zoya accepted his online friend request, he felt an instant connection. Soon, he was falling deeply in love with her.

For four years, first as friend and then as boyfriend, Anubhav waited for the day that Zoya would fall for him too. It never came. He had fallen in love with a person who had never really cared about him. He thought that if Zoya ever left him, he would be devastated. Turns out, it was the best gift ever.

In Why Not Me? A Feeling of Millions, Anubhav looks back on his roller-coaster ride of being crazy in love to heartbroken, expressing in words what countless others have felt. His message? A broken heart can make you a stronger person.

Already a national bestseller, Why Not Me? is a story of learning to love yourself again.

Check it out on Amazon!

Have you discovered a self-published book that deserves a spot on the Discovery List? Whether you wrote it, reviewed it, or just discovered it, you can add it here and help others make discoveries of their own.

Looking for book reviews!

Learn more about TimHave you reviewed a self-published book on your blog?

If so, please add your review to our Discovery List, and help us discover a new book.

I believe that reviews are the key to finding wonderful books to read, because it means that readers don’t need to take a chance—they already know it’s a good book!

We’d love to hear from you if you have ever posted a review of a self-published book on your blog. Add it here!

No budget to promote your self-published book? The Discovery List is here for you

Learn more about TimLet’s face it: book promotion can be a challenge for indie authors.

Traditional publishers, as we know, tend to have deep pockets, access to big-name book reviewers who write for newspapers and magazines, and plenty of pull with bookstore chains to make sure their books sell well.

But rare is the self-published author who has this much influence.

This puts independent authors in the position of having to spend more and more of their time thinking of more and more ways to attract readers to their work. It gets exhausting.

Yes, any author can throw money at Amazon to have their book appear more often, but that can get expensive.

That’s why I started the Discovery List!

It’s just a simple spreadsheet full of self-published books (like yours) that readers are bound to like, but it also allows all the voices in our community to weigh in on why they liked them, and add even more to our list.

And since it’s a spreadsheet, readers can sort it in any way they like to find books they’ll really connect with. Good luck trying to sort the big ol’ book pile at Amazon, am I right?

Once we have 100 entries on the list, and 5,000 blog followers (currently 4,699), I’ll release the Discovery List to our readers and we can all have a field day with it.

You wrote a great book, so get it on the list quickly! Add it here!

You self-published a book. Now, let’s put it front and center!

Learn more about TimIf you’re the author of a self-published a book, and you’d like more people to read it, please add it to our Discovery List!

I’ll feature the best ones on this blog each week—front and center for our 4,600 readers to discover.

Add your book here! Bonus points if your book has received a good review, but it’s not required.