You should be explicit and clear when creating a book review

What is a book review?

When assigned a book review it is very important to understand the specifics of this assignment. The main mistake usually made by the students: a book review is not just retelling the book. In fact, you shall not waste the number of words you have to retell the content of the book you read. The main idea of the assignment is to give a critical analysis of the paper from your point of view and the sources you gather for your paper. Don’t forget that while reading the assigned book.

Useful ideas for how to read the book

It is very to important to think about the paper you are going to write even when reading the book. This will bring you paper closer to the book, make it more precise and save you a lot of time later. 1. Keep your topic in mind all the time. It is even better to write it down on the separate sheet of paper and have it in front of you all the time. You will find a lot of interesting ideas in the book to support your opinion, if you do that.

Mark valuable ideas you can use in future. Can you imagine yourself in the situation: “I think I have seen something like this somewhere”? Then learn to write down the exact idea that seems interesting to you and the page you found it on in the book. You will definitely thank yourself later.  

Making your review understandable and close to the book.

What you shall always keep in mind to not get too far away from both the book and the topic.

  • Write about what is actually in the book, not what you want there to be. It is easy to distract from the actual content, especially of you are writing on a specific topic. Remember that the main point it to build everything around the book.
  • Mention writer’s background, think or research about how it could influence the meaning of the book. It will help you to take the correct angle to the review and make correct conclusions of what the writer tried to say.
  • Try to stay away from too many or too categorical personal conclusions, avoid saying the book is “bad” or “boring” without serious supportive evidence. After all, the review is mostly not about your personal impression from the book, but the ideas the writer tried to send to the world. A little research of the previous critical reviews may be helpful to set your mind on the right track.

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