How to Write a Book Review

Nayreth Garcia

Nayreth Garcia

Content Writer At Gradehacker

Updated on April, 2023

Learning how to write a book review is important for when you need to summarize one for your college task or for simply expressing your thoughts about a book that left a mark on you!

It’s one of the most common assignments required in English classes, but if you have never written one before or struggled with it, there are many douts you must have; especially because there are many ways you can approach a book review!

At Gradehacker, the non-traditional adult student  #1 resource, we have years of helping students with this type of essay (and every other type too); so we know what tips you need to follow.

Here is how to write a book review that will get you an A!

How To Write a Book Review- girl thinking- first picture

What is a Book Review?

The main purpose of writing book reviews is to tell a reader what you think about it. Here you’ll share what the novel is about, if it’s worth reading, and why.

Critical book reviews help readers understand a book’s plot, characters, and writing style for a more enjoyable reading experience. They come in various forms, just like any other type of writing.

Your major arguments should:

In order to make a successful and compelling essay review is important to follow the necessary steps. This includes doing an analytical reading of the material and taking notes on key points and relevant details that will be useful.

After understanding the basics of the book, you should then craft your opinion and provide readers with an overall evaluation of what you thought about it. 

You should consider that other readers might interpret the book and provide a balanced review with valid arguments too.

Examples Of Book Reviews

But before we get deeper into how to write a book review, let’s see a couple of examples of the different types you can find.

Literary Fiction Book Review:

A literary fiction review evaluates the quality of the writing, the story’s authenticity, and the characters’ growth.

Rather than focusing only on its entertainment value, literary reviews emphasize the book’s style, themes, and language.

These reviews aim to provide readers with a thoughtful and in-depth understanding of the work that extends beyond a summary or recommendation, prompting them to explore the novel on a deeper level.

https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/ralph-ellison/invisible-man/

Non-fiction Book Review:

This review will assess the book’s accuracy, research, and the author’s ability to explain complex ideas clearly.

Unlike fiction reviews, non-fiction reviews may be subjective because the reviewer’s agreement with the author’s perspective becomes the spotlight.

The author’s credibility and qualifications may also be taken into account

Generally, the reason for a non-fiction review is to provide readers with a clear understanding of the book’s content and help them decide whether the book is worth reading.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2559518667?book_show_action=true&from_review_page=1

Essential Steps For Writing The Review

When writing a book review, it’s hard to know what to include. 

Although there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, here are some tips that can help guide you on that process and know what to take into account:

Add a Catchy Introduction

Your review’s opening line sets the tone for your piece. 

It doesn’t matter if your review starts with a person’s story, struggle, or path to getting better. It’s also important to name your genre and type of book. Without this, your review will likely get overlooked.

Still, make your hook concise and simple. Your potential reader needs to understand what the problem is and why you want to share it with them

Give Your Opinion And Mention Important Parts

This is perhaps the most important part of the review, as it lets people know what you liked and disliked about the book. 

Give your honest opinion and try not to offer comments based on expectations.

The only way to get readers’ attention is to write an opinion of the story they will actually read and engage with

Balanced opinions are key! See it as an opportunity to introduce an analytical discussion of the book so the readers can get a clear idea of what to expect.

Also, compare your chosen novel to other well-known books or authors and describe the type of audience that may like or dislike it.

Analyse Literary Elements

While summarizing the plot and sharing your thoughts is a critical part of a book review, the best way to support your opinions is by analyzing the literary elements used by the author.

You don’t need to go too in-depth and list all the devices used, you can focus only on one or two and explain why they made you like or dislike the work.

You can analyze the:

Don’t Forget to Talk About The Writer!

Reviewing the books is the number one priority, but there is no reason why you should not write about its author; especially if it’s an autobiography or their context makes the novel be more interesting.

Giving some insight into the author’s background is always appealing and informative and gets the reader thinking. 

If they already know they, it will help them decide whether or not they’d like to read another book from the same author.

Leave An Open-ended Conclusion

In the conclusion, you need to restate your main opinions, but let it be intriguing enough so the reader wants to -at least- find more information about the book.

Another way to finish your book review is to find similar books and recommend them to fellow readers. For example, if you are reviewing a fantasy romance book, you can say: “If you were a fan of Twilight and Hush-Hush, then you will definitely be enchanted with this one!”

Tips to Take Away:

Before you actually start reading or writing your review, here are some tips you should consider:

When writing a book review, it’s important to avoid some common pitfalls that can detract from the overall quality of your work. 

Here are some things to avoid when writing a book review:

How to write a book review- second picture- girl happy reading and taking notes from computer

Why Writing Book Reviews Is Beneficial for Readers and Writers

Now, in case you have asked yourself “why is writing a book review important for my college journey?”, we have news for you. There are actually many reasons!

Based on academics, your professor can analyze your level of interpretation and how you communicate your ideas.

But if we need to define this craft, it is technically an exchange of opinions and ideas that forms a community with the same interests and passion.

It can truly become a benefit for those who want to read specific authors or genres but don’t have the time or ability to read everything as it becomes published.

Some people do it for fun, and others write book reviews as a way to earn money. So, the better reviews you write, the more you’ll improve your writing skills.

Do You Feel Ready To Start Your Book Review?

Writing a book review is a great way to start developing your writing skills and amplify your vocabulary, so don’t be afraid if you don’t do it perfectly the first time. 

With practice, you’ll be able to improve and get a high star rating on your assignments!

We hope this article helped you clear your doubts and guided you through the process of writing your book review. If you feel overwhelmed or uncomfortable when writing, remember that we are here to help you!

Whether it’s a book review from a novel you still haven’t read, another type of essay, or even your entire classes, be sure to reach out to us and you’ll receive the best assistance you’ll find.

If you want to make your college life easier, here are a few articles you may be interested in: