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8 Ways to Write Objective Book Review

8 Ways to Write Objective Book Review, Guest post by Richard Nolan


Even those of us who like reading books very much might find themselves struggling to write a decent book review. Unlike a book report that requires you to give only the most important information about the book, a review requires you to analyze the work thoroughly and give your own opinion about it.

Without a doubt, this could be challenging for many of us. You have to review a book that took months of years of struggles to write and fit your opinion into a required number of words. Moreover, you have to do it well enough to not look one-sided and amateur.
Lucky for you, today I want to offer you some tips that could help you do it more easily.

1.    Look at the guidelines.
It doesn’t matter if you are a student who has to complete a writing assignment, a professional writer, or a blogger who simply seeks inspiration in writing. Either way, you are most likely limited by certain guidelines that include a number of words and a deadline date. Try to keep them in mind all the time.

2.    Write down the essential information you’ll need.
You’ll need some information for the review – and you are able to collect some of it before you even start reading. Write down the title of a book, the name of its author, it’s genre, and maybe some facts that you know already and want to mention in the review. This will save your time later.

3.    Start reading as early as possible.
As I’ve already mentioned above, you have to keep a deadline date in mind. This could also help you understand how early should you start reading the book. Of course, the best thing is to do it as early as possible so you have more time to analyze it and write the review. But if it isn’t possible for some reason, you can at least evaluate time that you have left and try to define when to start. Some books are longer and some are shorter; some are easier to read and some are harder. Don’t forget about that and try to understand what kind of book is yours.

4.    Take notes during reading.
It’s always good to take notes in the reading process. This way you’ll be able to understand later how did your attitude towards certain characters change through the book (or did it change at all). You’ll also be able to memorize the most important plot twists better as well as write down some quotes you might need to use in the review.

5.    Define the major theme or themes.
The theme is the key idea of any book. It’s the message that author wants to deliver to the readers, the impact that they want to make. While your goal as a reviewer is to define whether they succeeded or not, this could be hard to do when you don’t understand what the main theme is.

Remember that sometimes authors don’t settle with one theme only. While there’s definitely the major one, there could also be a few others important themes that are described in the text. In this case, it’s important to mention them all in your review.

6.    Pay attention to the style.
Each writer has their own style, which you might like or might not. However, when it comes to book review writing, your goal is to evaluate whether this style is suitable for the book’s genre, topic, and audience. To do so, you have to define the style first, understand whether it’s only one style used or is there a combination of a few of them, and so on.

7.    Remember that a review has to be part-summary.
It’s hard to write a proper review without mentioning things that happen in a book. This is another reason why it is so important to take notes during the writing process: this way you’ll remember the plot and all the plot twists more clearly. To make it even easier, you can make a chapter-by-chapter summary during your reading. However, this won’t work for all the books as some of them don’t have chapters and some have ones that aren’t very clearly distinguished.

8.    Mention your own personal opinion.
Unlike a book report, a review is a piece of writing where your opinion not only matters but also is very important. So don’t forget about that. Write about how this book did affect you (if it did at all), did it change any of your opinions and views, do you agree with the author or not, and so on.

Remember: the only way to write a book review wrong is to forget to support your thoughts and opinions with arguments and quotes. So while the whole process might look challenging to you at first, it isn’t actually that hard.

I hope that these tips will help you to create a stunning book review that is truly objective.

8 Ways to Write Objective Book Review, Guest post by Richard Nolan
Richard Nolan is a writer and a private tutor, sharing his experience in spheres of  writing, blogging, entrepreneurship and psychology. Richard writes for numerous blogs and gives useful tips for bloggers and students. Follow him on  Twitter and Facebook

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