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Book Review Assignment Book reviews will be approximately 2-3 pages in length. An essential feature of a good book review is the reviewer's ability to write concisely so that a comprehensive evaluation of the book can be obtained from a brief reading. So, do not write more, write more concisely -- find creative ways to communicate your critical evaluation of the book in a short essay. The point of a scholarly book review is not to summarize the content of the book, but to situate the historical merit of the book and to evaluate critically the author's purpose, thesis, contentions, and methods of analysis. Hence, the bulk of the body of one's review essay will be an evaluation of how convincing was the author's presentation of his/her thesis, and a commentary on the book's contribution to historical understanding. Here's how the historian Jacques Barzun discussed the importance of the beginning of a book review: The beginning, we know is important. The first [paragraph] should present an idea of interest to the readers . . . . If your first words are "This book . . ." they will not
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  • Fall '12
  • Dr.Frazier
  • Writing, Jacques Barzun

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