|LEO: Literacy Education Online|
Writing Book Reviews
Specify the type of book (for example, fiction, nonfiction, biography, autobiography). Help your readers to review with perspective.
Mention the book's theme.
Sometimes you will need to include background to enable reader(s) to place the book into a specific context. For example, you might want to describe the general problem the book addresses or earlier work the author or others have done.
For a work of fiction, briefly review the story line for readers, being careful not to give away anything that would lessen the suspense for readers.
Respond to the author's opinions: What do you agree with? And why? What do you disagree with? And why?
Explore issues the book raises: What possibilities does the book suggest? Explain. What matters does the book leave out? Explain.
Relate your argument to other books or authors: Support your argument for or against the author's opinions by bringing in other authors you agree with.
Relate the book to larger issues: How did the book affect you? How have your opinions about the topic changed? How is the book related to your own course or personal agenda.
If you're still having trouble getting started writing your review, try working through some prewriting questions for writing reviews of books, movies, or plays.
For questions and suggestions, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last update: 28 September 1997