How to Write a Book Review
Your opinion is important—don't be afraid to voice it in a book review Writing a book review is not the same as writing a book report or a summary. A book review is a critical analysis of a published work that assesses the work's strengths and weaknesses. A prominent reviewer can have a major impact on a book's reception. Many authors strive to have their books reviewed by a professional because a published review (even a negative one) can be a great source of publicity. One need look no further than Oprah Winfrey's famed Book Club to see the effect that this type of publicity can have on a book's sales. There are countless book review examples, but first, let's discuss how to write a book review. You aren't in high school anymore
As mentioned, a book review is not a book report. Resist the temptation to summarize the character, plot, theme, and setting, which was probably the formula you used in your high school English classes. Your readers are not interested in having the book re-told to them, and are certainly not interested in having the ending spoiled. To become a legitimate book reviewer, you need to be able to tell your readers whether the book you are reviewing is interesting, thorough, original, and worth spending money on (or at least borrowing from the library). Preparing to write a review
Before writing a book review, you must, of course, read the book. Reading the first page, last page, and dust jacket won't cut it—you must read the book in its entirety, making quick notes about your impressions as you read. We also recommend that you ask yourself questions as you read. If the book is non-fiction, ask yourself, "Does the author have a clear argument that he or she is trying to prove? Is it original? Does he or she prove the argument successfully? Are the arguments sound? Is it well-researched and well-written? Does the author omit any information that would have been relevant?" For a work of fiction, ask yourself, "Is...
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