LEO Writing Book Reviews

LEOLEO: Literacy Education Online

Writing Book Reviews

Steps for Writing a Good Book Review

Introduce the subject, scope, and type of book

    Identify the book by author, title, and sometimes publishing information.

    Specify the type of book (for example, fiction, nonfiction, biography, autobiography). Help your readers to review with perspective.

    Mention the book's theme.

    Sometimes you will need to include background to enable reader(s) to place the book into a specific context. For example, you might want to describe the general problem the book addresses or earlier work the author or others have done.

Briefly summarize the content

    For a nonfiction book, provide an overview, including paraphrases and quotations, of the book's thesis and primary supporting points.

    For a work of fiction, briefly review the story line for readers, being careful not to give away anything that would lessen the suspense for readers.

Provide your reactions to the book

    Describe the book: Is it interesting, memorable, entertaining, instructive? Why?

    Respond to the author's opinions: What do you agree with? And why? What do you disagree with? And why?

    Explore issues the book raises: What possibilities does the book suggest? Explain. What matters does the book leave out? Explain.

    Relate your argument to

    The Best Essay Writing Service - EssayBox.org

    other books or authors: Support your argument for or against the author's opinions by bringing in other authors you agree with.

    Relate the book to larger issues: How did the book affect you? How have your opinions about the topic changed? How is the book related to your own course or personal agenda.

Conclude by summarizing your ideas

    Close with a direct comment on the book, and tie together issues raised in the review. Briefly restate your main points and your thesis statement if your teacher requires it. If you like, you can offer advice for potential readers.

If you're still having trouble getting started writing your review, try working through some prewriting questions for writing reviews of books, movies, or plays.

Return to the Write Place Catalogue

For questions and suggestions, please e-mail us at leolink@stcloudstate.edu.

© 1995, 1996, 1997 The Write Place

LEO: Literacy Education Online
This handout was written by Maria Escales for LEO and the Write Place, St. Cloud State University. It may be copied for educational purposes only. If you copy this document, please include our copyright notice and the name of the writer; if you revise it, please add your name to the list of writers.

Last update: 28 September 1997

URL: http://leo.stcloudstate.edu/acadwrite/bookrev.html


Category: Review

Similar articles: