Quotes from reviews- how freely can we use them?

if you write historical novels...

The Ups and Downs of Reviews

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AliG

Full Member
Narrator
Sep 9, 2014
Recently, an online magazine, Books Monthly, wrote a terrific (if concise) review of one of my books. I would like to quote part of it on a sticker for the front of the book. As the whole quote has already been published on their own website, am I free to use a proportion (about 30%) or do I have to request their permission? Has anybody come across this before?
 
It usually says somewhere on the review site, or in the email I receive from them letting me know the review is posted, what percentage of the review I can use. It's low. Usually 5%, or up to 100 words. Something along those lines. If you can't find it on their site, or didn't see it in an email, you should ask. It's their content so you do need permission to quote directly from the review.
 
Thanks Carol. It's only 6 words but that makes up a sizable proportion as it's a short quote. I'll approach them direct.
 
Thanks, James. That was kind of you. Very useful to know. I also asked the Society of Authors- they sent me a long reply- which I dare not quote- but in essence said 'ask'. I've emailed Books Monthly but may use a snippet from a Netgallery one if I don't hear soon. Great to get blanket permission.
 
I took this up with Netgalley and was told that their reviewers expect their reviews to be used, so no permission required.
For the record, this is what Netgalley wrote:

As long as you quote them correctly you don’t need to worry about permission. NetGalley readers are aware that they are using the service to submit reviews that the author can use, whether it’s for editorial feedback or blurbs to promote the title.

It’s always good practice to reach out to a reviewer (especially if you’re using their feedback for a large-scale, public promotion), but it is not mandatory.
 
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if you write historical novels...

The Ups and Downs of Reviews

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