Writing%20a%20Book%20Review

Writing%20a%20Book%20Review - How to Write a Book Review A...

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LSC: How to Write a Book Review Page 1 How to Write a Book Review A book review is not a summary, and it’s not merely a Siskel and Ebert thumbs-up or thumbs-down personal appraisal of the book. The purpose of the book review is to present your readers with a critical evaluation of the book. It’s subjective – yes -- but it needs to take into consideration the work’s literary merits in order to arrive at the personal assessment. The book review is usually composed of the following components: Overview of the Book Usually present in the first paragraph of the review and brief, the overview can consider the author’s purpose and the theme of the book and give the reader of the review an idea at how well the book fulfilled its purpose or conveyed its theme. Was the book intended to entertain? Did it? What is a central theme or important idea of the book and how did the author convey it? Were characters used to convey theme? Are there recurrent images that help to illustrate it? What events take place that serve this purpose? And was it effective? Assessing the Book’s Strength and Weaknesses Pay attention to the book’s narrative voice. Who is the narrator? Is (s)he appropriate and effective? Are the characters believable and fully created? Are they sympathetic? Is the use of language and wording appropriate to the book’s genre, and does it support the purpose of the book? Questions such as these and others (readability, style, scope, etc…) can help you decide how the book compares to other books in the same genre. This will inform your final opinion of the book. Author Information Some biographical information about the author may be of interest. Is the book a novel of place? If so where is the author from or where does (s)he live? What are the author’s previous works? How does his or her life experience feed the writing of this book? Your Personal Perspective Perhaps in combination with author information, your personal take on the work is often used to sum up your earlier critical analysis. Avoid overusing “I” statements to mitigate your views. A reader approaches the book review knowing that it is subjective. Also, go easy on the superlatives (Best book ever! Greatest characters!). Remember, the review is a tool for your readers, not a showcase for the breadth of your literary acumen. Consider
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Writing%20a%20Book%20Review - How to Write a Book Review A...

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