An early review copy or book preview is sent out before publication for buyers, reviewers, booksellers, book clubs, or publisher sales representatives to evaluate. These copies could have different formats, such as uncorrected or bound differently, or have different cover designs than what will eventually appear in print. Usually, this process includes proofs, advanced reading copies, and publication.
An advance reading copy (ARC) is an early review copy distributed to reviewers, media representatives, booksellers, and others before its release date. Arcs typically arrive several months ahead of schedule.
Arcs are typically printed on 8.5″ x 11″ (or A4) paper and have a different cover from the final book’s. Text within is usually identical; however, some differences, such as typos or missing images, may exist.
Arcs create advance buzz for books by allowing reviewers to read and comment before publication. They also help gauge reader interest from bookstores and media.
Are You a Book Reviewer, Blogger, or Journalist? To request an advanced reader copy (ARC) for review purposes, contact the publisher/publicist for the book you wish to read; some publishers also make these available through contests or giveaways.
If you receive an advance reading copy (ARC), it is generally considered polite to complete reading the book and write a review or post before its release date; however, this obligation is voluntary and should never feel restrictive.
Advance Reading Copies (ARCs) are valuable tools for publishers and authors, providing feedback from early readers regarding a book’s quality, writing ability, and writing style. This feedback is vital in producing the highest-quality final product possible.