Friday, 13 November 2009

Hints on how to write a book review

You MUST include the author and title and your name and class!

Getting started

Ask yourself the questions below and you can use your answers to help create your review. Answer the questions using only one or two words or, at the very most, one or two sentences. You don’t have to answer them all, but they will help get you started.


What was the opening like? Dramatic, dull, slow, exciting?
What was the story about?
What length of time passes in the story? (1 day, a week etc.?)
What happened, was it unusual or ordinary?
How did the story end?


Who were the main characters?
What were they like?
Were they described in much detail?
Who did you find most interesting/like best and why?
Who did you like least and why?
What kind of relationships/conflicts were there in the story?


Where was the story set?
When was the story set?


Was the story written in the first or third person (‘I’ or ‘she’) and was this important?
Was the setting described in detail?
Were feelings and attitudes described well?
Was it a good or bad story and why do you think it was good/bad?
What was your favourite moment in the story and why?
Was there anything that could be better and if so what changes would you make?


Do you think the writer had a reason for telling the story?
How did you feel during and after reading the story?
Do you think you learned anything from the story?
How would you compare it to other books you have read?
Would you recommend this book and if so to whom?

Now you can start writing your review

Using your notes from the questions you answered start writing your review. Don’t forget to keep looking at to your notes for help.


(Plot, Characters, Setting)

Introduce the book by stating the title and author and then write 3 or 4 sentences giving a rough outline of the story. Outline the main characters and mention the setting.

Highlights and weak moments


Tell your reader about the best bits and why and about any parts where you got bored or wished the action would liven up. You must explain why those bits were good/bad.

Your verdict


Tell your reader what you thought about the book and why. Say what the book did and did not do for you. You must give reasons and examples. Say if you would recommend it to anyone else and if so what kind of person.

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