How to keep your Amazon reviews from going missing…Giveaways and Book Deals-Steals


Have you been notified that your Amazon reviews are being yanked? It’s a problem a lot of readers (and authors) are seeing right now and it’s infuriating for both of us. You can thank the scammers who went out and bought reviews for their books and products for this…in order to stop “purchased” reviews, Amazon has made all our lives miserable.

While the secret of being reinstated once removed still remains a mystery, there are some things that you can do to keep this from happening to you…

DON’T friend authors on social media, like Facebook. You can follow their author pages but don’t personally friend them. Apparently Amazon is able to see those connections and once they think you’re a friend of the author, your review is history.

SPEND $50 on Amazon. Amazon has long had a “you have to spend at least $50 to review” policy, but they’ve really started cracking down on it. Reviewers who had slipped under the wire are finding all their reviews poofed.

DON’T be an author. Authors who review other authors books are being punished because authors were “swapping” reviews. That sucks for authors who are also readers but…

DON’T enter contests from your favorite authors where the prize is a gift card. Authors have been known to give readers gift cards in exchange for reviews, so now that behavior is cause to be barred, even if the gift card was actually for a contest/giveaway.

In short, don’t do anything that allows Amazon to make a connection between you and the reader. Otherwise your review will go missing and in some cases ALL your reviews go missing. Hopefully soon Amazon will stop their bots from being quite so vicious about things. They have a tendency to do something WAY OVERBOARD to then adjust, claiming the bots needed tweaking…


Over on my website I have a BUNCH of authors who are trying to get the magical 1000 followers on Bookbub. This is wildly important to them (it helps us do advertising with BB).

If you’d be so kind as to swing by and follow them, you could win $50 gift cards from Amazon!



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Start Date: 07-10-2018End Date: 07-14-2018

A Birthday in December (City Lights New York)

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A fictional world brought to life, a dark romance that promises eternity, and a secret that threatens to end it all.

Crimson Wilkinson is a teenage girl who, having survived a dark childhood, finds her escape in reading a popular vampire series…

Amy Vansant
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19 Responses

  1. Kristina M. Anderson

    I recently had all my reviews yanked off Amazon because I won a gift card from an author that I had reviewed. I provided a printscreen showing I had won the contest and several weeks later, my reviews were restored. It is frustrating.


  2. Sarah K.

    the $50 purchase requirement also has to be met via debit/credit card – using gift cards won’t count towards that threshold.


  3. KATE

    I courteously disagree. I think that joining up with author associations like RWA and Indie support network who met with KDP in person. None of these things are actually against the rules. If you lose reviews you should contact Amazon and demand that are reinstated. KDP (Amazon) said that ARC copies and reviews are OK. In my opinion, What we need to do as readers and authors is stand up to them and demand they follow their own rules. It’s not ok or fair for authors or readers to suffer. The more we make noise, valid noise, the more they will listen. Join a professional organization and see what you can do to help.
    Here’s to the ZON stopping their bullying tactics on authors trying to make a living. Peace.


    • Patty

      I agree that complaints should be voiced loudly. If you don’t put a voice to a problem, no one will ever know that there is a problem.


      • Christa Gettys

        I was blocked (and the funny part is two emails before I was blocked, asked me to review the books I had just read) because I am friends with many of the authors I read on facebook, twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr just so I can share ideas and help my budding career. They are all more than willing to share their insight. It is frustrating to be blocked and unable to recommend the books but I value the authors and I buy their books so that is how I can support them until Amazon gets its panties out of a wad. I read 10 books a week so I have (had) hundreds of reviews. I never gave lower than a 4. Anything below a four usually was not my cup of tea so I didn’t feel comfortable making a bad comment, just because it was not my style. If the book was well written I would give them high reviews for that and simply say this is not my genre preference or something. I am sure enough people will band together and it will be on social media and Amazon will apologise and some such drivel and we can get back to business.


    • Amy Vansant

      I can tell you most authors are terrified of pissing off Amazon, because they’ve got an overwhelming majority of the market cornered. Without them, we might as well write in a closet and then eat the printed pages. But I most certainly think readers who have their reviews yanked should complain. Organizations have a shot at getting them to listen, yes, that’s a good call too.


      • Jann

        I have been blocked by Amazon for trying to post a review for a author. She is a Christian author and it was a 3 book series. I finally let her know I could not post, but I posted on the other 2 books no problem. No reason given. Frankly I don’t think everything should ever be on Facebook. Its an invitation to trouble. I am on there, but just to visit and chat. I don’t play games nor sign on book sites.

        Amy, your email about what not to do was wonderful. Including your remarks about FB.


  4. Terry Easom

    I also agree it’s time we readers stand up for ourselves and our authors! It’s high time Amazon stopped being the Bully of the reader world!


  5. judy

    Since i don’t have 50 dollars to spend at Amazon. Do I ask the author what to do or just risk it being pulled. I have bought stuff not books in The past. But i don’t even have ten to spend. I despise Amazon anyway as you already know. If a person walks into a bookstore and buys a book and is stopped at the door and told that they can’t leave with that book there would be a major scene. Telling them that they are more than welcome to use a back room to read in but the book stays in the store isn’t any consolation either. And I guarantee you that if a store did that then there would be no more customers. It would have to close down. Yet that is exactly what Amazon does. So many people take all their gadgets their pads and computers and all for granted that they don’t even think about it. The kindle fires only use WiFi. Well you cant have Wi-Fi without the internet. And not everyone has internet. There are still plenty of people that can’t afford it. Especially with trumps war on poor people. And in ky we have to deal with trump jr for a govenor. I am not sure what they want poor people to do. I expect some sort of govt warfare virus to be released anytime now.. something he has gotten from Russia with only millionaires having access to the antidote. Well rather sexist only breeding females no homosexuals no matter how rich they are. Sorry got off track..but then people say well their android app is free. That file is quite large. I have a much better reader app that is less than half the size. And Cool Reader has a read aloud option. Sure it’s just a computer voice but a very welcome one on days when your eyes are giving you problems. And you can not even download your own books unless you have THEIR app. Kobo let’s you download them but they are locked so that once again you have to use their own reader. So since I cant get any of my books right now i consider Amazon as holding my books hostage until I figure something out. I just don’t have room on my phone for their app right now. And technically they are my books. Not theirs. I should be able to access them and use reader of my choice. And since Amazon holds so many authors hostage I have no choice on most authors. If i want their books I have to go through Amazon. An author did write me and try to explain problems with letting people have the books. But i still prefer smashwords. They have only been around ten years. But you buy a book you get your book. As a reader I appreciate that. Also the authors that are able to sell from their own site. I know it isn’t possible for most and I understand it. And now they have to make it even more difficult to leave reviews that are so important. I can’t believe they can’t figure out a different way to solve this problem.


    • Michelle F.

      I go to the library for free Wi-Fi on my Kindle Fire. I don’t have the Internet at home. I also don’t have money to spend on Amazon unless I win a gift card.


  6. Michelle

    I’ve recently had a review for something other than a book rejected by Amazon. When I queried it I was told only ‘Verified Purchases’ would be accepted. When I then queried was mine not a verified purchase, as a) I had paid for it; and b) because when I access the page for said item there’s a big banner telling me when I’d last purchased it. I was then informed only items purchased using a credit/debit card were valid as ‘verified purchase,’ not those made by gift card balances. As like many other people on limited funds at Christmas & birthdays I will often ask for gift cards, so I can spend them throughout the year on products I need/want & as opposed to a gift of money it doesn’t inadvertently get spent on food/bills when things are tight. In addition on the odd occasion I might have a tiny amount spare I will either purchase a gift card myself or ‘top-up’ my Amazon balance, so my funds are allocated & also I can’t accidentally overspend. Either way Amazon are getting my money in advance of my purchasing and they are the ones who will earn interest on it, not me. Yet for doing this I am penalised and prohibited from leaving reviews! I do understand Amazon are looking to stop or reduce fraudulent reviewing for ‘the greater good,’ but I believe this is one step too far!!


    • Michelle

      Further to my rant above, It turns out Amazon in fact encourage people to top-up their gift balances and to that end, not only can you do it online, but also in the UK by using cash at PayPoints. There add states…

      “Two simple ways to add funds to your Gift Card Balance
      Use your balance to shop millions of items on
      Top Up Online
      Top Up In Store
      Add funds to your balance online using your card
      Set aside a budget for shopping on Amazon
      Always stay within your limit
      Keep track of how much you’ve spent

      Add funds to your balance at thousands of in store locations
      Shop on Amazon without using a credit or debit card
      Quick and simple without any fees
      Thousands of participating PayPoint and epay locations”

      Yet no mention that paying this way might well prevent you from being able to review the goods you purchase, be they books or goods. I can’t help wondering if musicians experience the same problems with Amazon that you authors are subjected to?!…


  7. Patricia Miner

    I’m not a huge fan of Jeff Bezos or his politics. However, I can buy 2lbs. of fennel seed on Amazon for the same price I would pay for 2oz. in a grocery store. I can get a pound of allspice for the same price as 1.8 oz in a grocery store. I really hate contributing to a rich socialists (an oxymoron if ever I heard one) bank account but in this world we take the good with the bad.

    I can also subscribe (I do) to Kindle Unlimited for less than I would pay for one paperback book. This allows me to read as many books as I want each month. Kindle Unlimited is one of the best deals I’ve ever seen if you are a prolific reader.

    Because of Kindle Unlimited my reviews are never questioned and are posted almost immediately. If I’m reviewing a book for an author I always get it with kindle unlimited if possible. It makes the review easier to post and there is no disclaimer about the book being free.

    I’m disabled and live on a fixed income. If I had to purchase every book I read I would quickly run out of reading material. So, just saying, you don’t have to be rich to use Amazon.

    I’ve also tried every other e-book site i.e. Nook, smashwords, etc. Amazon is the best reader and the best value. It also offers the best indie authors you can’t find many on those other sites.

    The only place you will find a better value when it comes to books is your library.

    Try pricing spices, canned food, or other things you buy regularly. I guarantee Amazon is cheaper and if you spend $25 shipping is free. I’d much rather buy cheaper items and have them delivered to my door because I hate grocery shopping.

    So I guess I have a love/hate relationship with Amazon but there is a lot more to love about it.


  8. Lauren Long

    I’ve done all of this. And unlinked goodreads/facebook/amazon. But me and a friend of mine (who lives 2 states away) magically got our accounts linked through no fault of our own. Amazon refuses to acknowledge this is a thing and won’t unlink them or tell us why it happened in the first place. We were not allowed to review the same books -which sucked cause we both read the same kinds of things and recommend books to each other constantly since we were in high school-. Now both our accounts have been banned from ALL Reviews not just the ones they thought were authors we were friends with. I can’t even review something I bought last week that wasn’t a book. And they pulled reviews from literally 13 years ago when I created my account and turned 18…. Can’t figure out how to get any of it back. Just a warning to people who do follow rules, Amazon will still do stupid stuff.


  9. Jetty

    I was banned from giving reviews too. I have been asking the helpdesk to take this bann away. They have promised me several times to send my request to the right department and they would solve it within 24-48 hours. But it wasn’t solved so far. Now I see that because I have some authors on facebook or sometimes I answer their questions to help them out I might be considered a friend. Wow, I guess then they have loads of friends as lots of people do that. There is no personal contact at all. I just want to read and help others to give my honest opinion of books for others and the author. But I guess this won’t be removed anymore now. Too bad.


  10. Sandy

    Does the $50 requirement include only books, or to all purchases.



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