I would like to use my galleys for a dual purpose – for reviews and to take to businesses and colleges that are already waiting to see my book. I have read that reviewers do not want to see the actual cover on the galley. Is that true?
I would prefer to provide a professinal looking galley with a real cover instead of a plain cover with text. The first page would say Review Copy and provide usual publishing information for the reviewers. What should a galley really look like?
What you heard is only partially true. Many book reviewers (but certainly not all) don’t want to see a book that is already published. That’s why there’s a bias against real covers and why traditional old-time galleys featured plain covers with type only. But that thinking no longer applies in today’s print-on-demand world.
Now book reviewers quite honestly expect to see a version of the final cover on galleys. But those galley copies are over-printed with a phrase such as Advance Review Copy, Review Copy Only, Galley Copy: Publication Date of December 2011.
So, go ahead and use your real cover on your galley copies, but over print with a banner or attach a bold sticker saying Advance Review Copy Only. You can also print that info, as you suggested, on the inside first page, but make sure it’s on the outside as well – boldly and clearly on the outside where the reviewer can see it at a glance.