A Debut- Author Lost A Book Deal After Allegations Of Review-Bombing

Following accusations from readers and other writers that she had posted fictitious bad reviews on a well-known book suggestion website, a debut author got the boot from both her US publisher and her agency.

The author of the upcoming sci-fi fantasy book Crown of Starlight, Cait Corrain, made headlines last week when it was alleged that she had created fake profiles on the Goodreads book review platform, which is owned by Amazon, in order to leave critical feedback from readers about other authors online—a behavior referred to as review-bombing.

Penguin Random House's Del Rey Books said on X on Monday that they were aware of the current debate around Corrain and that her book, which was initially slated for release on May 14, is no longer planned for publication in 2024. 

Rebecca Podos, Corrain's book agent, also disclosed that she is no longer in contact with Corrain. She declared that going forward, she and Cait would not be working together. She also expressed her sincere gratitude to everyone who was directly affected by the events of last week for their patience as they handled a challenging circumstance.

The dispute has brought attention to the ongoing problems facing the book business with Goodreads, which has become extremely important in the publishing sector because of its power to either promote or discourage new writers. Book enthusiasts from all over the world have been discussing this issue. The frequency of review-bombing, which the website has attempted to combat—even asking users to report the legitimacy of ratings and reviews on the platform in October—has muddled its significance.

Writers were suspicious of Corrain's purported anonymous review-bombing when they observed many identities posting harsh one-star evaluations on previously unpublished novels written by other authors. Numerous of them were also first-time releases scheduled for the first half of the next year. When readers saw that all of those accounts had given Crown of Starlight five stars and had upvoted it on several Goodreads book lists, it looked that those accounts—which had seemed to like each other's reviews—became even more connected.

Prior to making her social media profiles private, Corrain responded to the claims in a post. She circulated screenshots of her and the purportedly malicious Lilly's Discord talks, alleging that her friend was responsible for the review-bombing. However, many of the onlookers were unconvinced, pointing out differences in the dates and times that give the snapshot chats the appearance of being manipulated. Corrain is still dealing with consequences in her career.


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