Basics of Book Reviews

For many, reading is a part of our everyday life. We use it to get from one place to another, to contact one another, and many others. a course in miracles teachers, can be one of the most fun, educational things that we read. It allows us to take a moment to step out of ourselves and see the world in a way that we haven’t before. With that, I find that it is important to write book reviews as well, especially if you have strong feelings for the book.

If people didn’t write book reviews, then no one would know about the new and amazing books to hit the market and these talented authors would never become known or continue their journey of writing amazing books. The idea of writing an actual book review may seem challenging to many for you don’t know where to start. It is because of this that I have decided to dedicate this page as the “How To” of properly writing a book review. With this guide you can go out there and let the world know what you feel and think of that piece of literature that you cannot put down.

Step one of writing a review, is pick out that book that you have been dying to read. If you already have the desire to read a certain book, your feelings and expectations of the book will be more defined, making it all the easier to put into words and write a review. If you have no idea where to start, trying going to your favorite book section, young adult for me, and take a look around. Pick something that interests you, but if possible, isn’t all that widely popular. By picking a less heard of book, you won’t be as likely to let other’s views influence you during the review process. Also, your review will most likely be more helpful since there won’t nearly be as many out that as the top sellers.

The next part is the most simple. Now that you have your book, read it. Try not to get too caught up in the fact that you will soon be writing about this books. Read it for enjoyment. If you find yourself laughing, crying, cringing, or many of the other emotions books can bring to us, write that page down. That part of the book obviously got a reaction out of you, so you may want to mention it later on in your review.

Once you have finished the book, take a moment sit and really think about it. Think about your favorite parts, your least favorite parts, and compare what you thought of this book to what you have thought of others. Now that you have your mind working, create a pro and con list. If your pros dramatically outweigh your cons, chances are that you really enjoyed this book. On the other hand, if your cons outweigh your pros, you most likely did not care for this book at all. If both sides are about even, then this book was nothing that you felt too passionate about.

From this point, you know exactly what you thought of the book that you just read. It is at this point that many people will rate the book on some sort of scale such as one to ten. This part is completely optional. If you find that you can easily pick a number to fit the book, then I suggest you go ahead and do it. I, on the other hand, find that picking a number can be quite hard, for all books are so different that I have a hard time categorizing them under one number. Instead I choose to just write down a very short phrase that sums up my feeling for the book, such as “Loved it”, “Don’t Bother”, “Couldn’t Put it Down”, and many others. By doing this, you are basically rating the book, but allowing your readers to view it in a qualitative way.

Next, you will start the actual writing process. The first step is writing down all the important information about the book so that your audience will know exactly what you are reading. During this part the more information, the better. The title of the book and the author must be included; however, you can include other information such as: price, type of book, subject matter, illustrations, and many others. You may include whatever you feel is important to your review.

During the next part, you should give a summary over what happened in the book. This part can be tricky because you want your audience to know what the book is about, but you don’t want to give too much away or there will be no point for them to read it. I always start off by telling the main characters as well as the setting of the story. For example, if I was reviewing the book The Hunger Games I would say, “The book titled The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins is told through the perspective of a 16-year old named Katniss Everdeen, who lives in what is thought to be a futuristic America, now called Panem.” You can then go on to write about what you thought were important parts of the book, but remember not to give away too much. If for some reason you do need to give away some plot changing facts, it is always courteous to write the word “Spoilers” in the heading, so your readers will know that important information is discussed and allow them to decide whether or not they want to read it.

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