How to Write a Book Review by Rebecca Graf
Age Group: Adult, Young Adult
Genre: How To Book
Release Date: March 1, 2013
Have you wondered what makes a good book review? Have you wondered what you might be missing in writing a book review? You can find out how to write a quality book review in these pages.
Book reviewing is more than just saying you like or dislike a book. Thought needs to be put into every review. There are ten things every reviewer needs to focus on.
1. Read the Book – If you don’t finish a book, please don’t review it. Many people will read a book and not finish it yet still write a review. That is being unfair to the book. You have no idea how it might end. It might have the most fabulous ending in the world, and you missed it as well as misdirected other people.
2. Be Polite – Never be nasty in writing a review. It reflects poorly on the reviewer. Any reviewer that is not polite is just being mean to the book and the author. Not good at all.
3. Discuss Both Strengths and Weaknesses – Don’t just talk about the weaknesses of the book. Talk about its strengths. There will be some. So don’t let issues overpower the strengths that are present. Keep in mind that what you consider a weakness might not be considered so by other readers.
4. Be Concise Yet Wordy – Reviews of books need to be more than a line or two. That might tell me whether the reviewer liked or disliked it, but I know nothing more. This means I cannot make an informed decision. Don’t write your own novel in your review, but don’t just say you like it. Tell me more.
5. Don’t Retell the Story – I usually give a very short summary. Reviewers that retell the story turn me off. They can spend over half the review summing it up. Do no more 3-5 sentences summing up the stories.
6. No Spoilers – Don’t tell potential readers secrets from the book. Otherwise, why read the book?
7. Avoid Comparisons – Don’t say a book is like Twilight or Lord of the Rings. Many books will be like them in some aspects. Even they are like books previously written. This causes judgments to be passed that might not be fair.
8. Considering Editing – If you get an ARC or an electronic copy fromr the author/publisher, don’t mention editing issues. Most of these copies are not final. If you get a print copy that is not designated ARC or through a vendor such as Amazon, mention editing issues that interfere with the story.
9. Consider Opinions – When you give your opinion in a book review, remind readers that that is all it is. Your opinion might not be the same as someone else’s. What you think is great, I might not want to read past the first chapter.
10. Use Disclaimers – Always note where you got the book from and if you were paid for the review. This is legal and ethical.
Rebecca Graf was born in Russellville, Kentucky but grew up in Dothan, Alabama. She graduated from the University of Montevallo with an accounting degree. Given the chance to try her hand at writing, she began writing online articles leading to her first published book, A Gift for a Mouse. From there she ventured into romance, mystery, comedy and drama. The passion of writing was discovered. She currently lives in Wisconsin with her husband and three children.