I do wonder how many people actually buy books because of the blurbs: Stephen Fry, “Magnificent”; Richard Osman, “A brilliant read”, as it might say on the back cover or on the website. Do people really browse in a shop or online and say, “Oh Stephen Fry thought it was great, I think I will buy that”? Publishers clearly think so. If they are right, I have been the beneficiary of many kind people who have read my books and provided a comment, which has taken its place on the covers, or on the Amazon entry, and helped my sales. But are they right?
I can’t say that I’ve ever been compelled to buy a book because of an endorsement it received. To be honest, another person’s opinion — no matter how sage or august that person is — has never mattered to me when it comes to choosing something to read.