How Taylor Marshall artificially inflates his books’ reviews and ratings at Amazon and Goodreads

My Complaint to

Goodreads’ Rules: “Artificially inflating or deflating a book’s ratings or reputation violates our rules. This includes activity like creating fake accounts to manipulate book ratings, purchasing reviews, and incentivizing votes, likes, or other actions on Goodreads.”

As explained in the book itself, Dr. Taylor Marshall recruited a “Launch Team” for his book “Infiltration” of over 2000 persons. They were each given a free copy of the book and their name in the book as part of the Launch Team in exchange for reviewing the book and promoting it online. Here is the blog post at making the offer:

Many of the reviews on Good Reads are from persons whose names are listed in the book as part of that Launch Team. Check the contents of the book itself (where each launch team member is listed), or see the list of Launch Team members here:

A partial list (72) of reviewers at Good Reads who are on the Launch Team:
Reviewer Name (Name as Credited in Book, if different)

Angela Wagner
Stefanie Nicholas
John Ericson
Darren Cary
Bonjello Figueroa
Ngabire Emmanuel (Emmanuel Ngabire)
William Safford
Mary Grace (Mary Grace Wallsten)
Daniel Volpato
Stephen Volk
Rudi Cvelbar
Toby Bedford
Ruth Campbell
Donna Hickman (Donna Marie Hickman)
Darren Easterday
Dave Wilson — one of the few reviewers who disclosed receiving the book free
Becky Gibson (Rebecca Gibson)
John Mercer (John F. Mercer)
Rudy Anthony (Rudy Anthony Reyes)
David Warner (David W. Warner)
BV Semah (Benjamin Varle Semah)
Janice Travasso
Michael Velosa
Matěj Čadil
Edwin Rocabado
Patricia La Barbera
Owen Gagliardo
Dominic Casanova
Valerie Giggie
Valerie Lewis
Benoit Meyrieux
Alex Mejia (Elizabeth Mejia)
Ian Carlo (Ian Carlo Lositaño)
Joyce Ann (Joyce Ann Burns)
Rene Wu
Daniel Goddu (Dan Goddu)
Jodi Grant
Catherine Loft
Ms Deb de Vries OP (Ms. Deb De Vries O.P.)
Kristen Marquis
Christopher Dawson
Michael Riopel
Richard Pelo (Richard John Pelo)
Noah Sell
Carl Lordi
Leslie Najm
Carlos Bárcenas
Roxanne Carrasco
Sasha Tesija
Cathy Anderson (Catherine Anderson)
Charles Volz
Waldemar Żurek (Waldemar Zurek)
Luigi Neri
Kate Dyson-d’onofrio (Kate Dyson-D’Onofrio)
Vince Cavanaugh
Jeffrey Boozer
Paulo Arruda
Philip Swanson
Albin Paul
Rik van Steenoven (Rik Johannes Franciscus Maria van Steenoven)
Sarah Phillips (Sarah Louise Phillips)
Brandon Mauch
Brad Lamorgese
Albert Fiedeldey
Tom Keller (Thomas Keller)
Maria Garcia
Alex Russell (Alexandra Russell)
Bill Breen (William Breen)
Cynthia Laforty
James Jansen van Vuuren
Rick Eagan
Alex Sullivan

The list above is only those reviewers (72) who gave enough information to identify them. Many other reviewers give only their first names. The majority of reviews at of this book appear to be from the “Launch Team”, not from Good Reads members who spontaneously chose to review the book. As an author, I find this approach to promoting the book unfair and dishonest. The same problem occurs over at Amazon with this same book, but they would not respond to my complaint.


I’ve also complained similarly to Amazon. Here is a link to my post on the same problem for Amazon reviews of Infiltration by Taylor R. Marshall, Ph.D. That link has a full list of the 2015 Launch Team Members

Dr. Marshall has used this dishonest technique to give other books of his an immediate and overwhelming number of good reviews, vaulting his books over those of other honest authors by artificially-obtained reviews and ratings. If Amazon and Goodreads do not crack down on this method, it will spread to other book authors and other types of products.

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