A Comparison and Analysis of The Reviews of J.M. Coetzee's Disgrace and their Respective Audiences
When choosing a new book to read, often times people will consult book reviews to determine whether or not they will pick up a specific book. Many reviews can be written on the same text, though each review is very different because of the audience that the author is trying to target. Tone, content, and length are important indications of the kind of audience that the writer is appealing to and easily differentiate one review from another. In this essay, I will examine reviews of J.M. Coetzee's Disgrace from different publication outlets and the audiences each review is attempting to reach.
All of the following reviews have come from different sources, and each review reflects the outlet from which it came. Readers of The New York Review of Books expect a long, in-depth analysis of plot and discussion of the themes within a novel. This is very different from the expectations set by Linus's Blanket. These readers expect the reviews to comment on whether or not the reviewer liked the book and very briefly explain what it is about. Between these two types of reviews, we find Salon. The readers here want a middle-of-the-road review that contains a moderately in-depth plot analysis, briefly comments on some of the larger themes of the book, and the author's opinion on how much they liked the book. Though the three reviews are all written about the same subject, each one is distinct and unique.
The first review, "Endgame" from The New York Review of Brooks, is a very in-depth and well written piece of work. In its entirety, the article does a very excellent job of summarizing the plot and analyzing certain key plot points. Though the article is rather lengthy, the author easily keeps the reader engaged by briefly examining the underlying meanings behind certain passages and themes within the plot. Despite that the author uses some elevated diction in the review,...
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