Tips for Writing a Critical Book Review

Every student who studies language and literature is expected to read books in order to develop his outlook. Moreover, students have to read extracurricular books and review them professionally. A critical book review is a specific assignment, because a student should read a book, understand its plot and analyze its characters and the author’s style of writing. If you require additional information about critical book review writing, you are able to improve your knowledge with the help of these simple instructions.

  1. Observe the Title and the Author of Your Book. To begin with, present the title of the book and define its genre. Then, point out at the date of its publication. It is important to connect the date of publication of a book with the historical events, which occurred at that time. This historical context will help you review the book effectively. Then, mention the author of this book and write a few words about him. It is reasonable to recall his other famous books and compare them with one another. Try to get to know about the author and his worldview in order to understand his works better. Very often, writers reflect various everyday social and political problems in their books.
  2. Write a Brief Summary of the Book. If you want to analyze the book critically, you should provide the reader with the general information about its plot. Of course, you should not mention its slight details. You ought to write a short paragraph, which informs about the general idea of the text.
  3. Write about the Genre and Composition of the Book. It is important to write about the genre of your book, because it will affect the quality of your review. Then, pay attention to the structure of the book. Mention the number of chapters and say whether they are built in the logical way. Say whether the composition is regular or not.
  4. Review the Main Problems of the Book. Every book hides a great number of problems, symbols and motives. If you want to prepare an effective critical review, you ought to find these problems and describe them professionally. You should try to find any social, theological, cultural and political problems, which can make the book interesting for reading. If you cannot define any problems or motives, you can read various articles of the reputed critics who observed the book years ago. You can use their ideas though you ought to cite every borrowed sentence.
  5. Analyze the Style of Writing. Every famous author has his original style of writing. You should observe the text attentively and find various stylistic devices, which improve the quality of the book. Pay attention to metaphors, similes, hyperboles, transliterations, etc. You can name the favorite stylistic device of the author. The teacher will appreciate your work if you decide to count every type of these devices.
  6. Pay Attention to the Characters. Every book has a great number of characters who play the most important part in the plot. Focus on their appearance, feelings, emotions and lifestyle. Obviously, some characters are universal and they represent common people. Then, write about the descriptions of the natural environment. Very often, the feelings of a character are described with the help of the weather changes. For example, the grey sky and rain symbolize sorrow and negative emotions.
  7. Summarize the Review. Devote the last paragraph of your review to the general evaluation of the entire book. Why do you like or dislike it? Would you recommend someone to read this book?

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