For this assignment, you will write a book review. Read the assignment instructions provided by your instructor to learn more about the specific book you will be reviewing.
A book review is not a book report.
A book review is a critical essay that goes beyond summarizing the book; it also provides an analysis and evaluation of the merits and flaws of the book. The word "critical" refers to the analysis and evaluation/assessment part. Your essay must show not only that you have read the whole book, but also that you have interacted with the contents in a critical/analytical way. Your analysis and conclusions must be based on evidence from the book itself.
A book review evaluates someone else's work, so the focus should be on them. To keep your review focused on the work, do not use the "I" voice. Examples:
The purpose of your book review will be to
The introduction should include
In Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari recounts how humans have developed from brutes to demigods in the course of their evolutionary history: a grand narrative, one would think, but he perceives it as a comic-tragedy, and details it with mordant humor. (Source of this example: Michael Saler, "Star Stuff?" A review of Sapiens: A Brief History of Humanity, by Yuval Noah Harari).
Your summary should
Whether in writing or in conversation, Lincoln "carefully avoided the sectional names Puritan and Cavalier" (5).
The Main Body of the Essay
The body of the essay should
One of the questions you are asked to address is "How are the author's main points presented, explained, and supported?" A paragraph addressing this question might look something like this:
The authors take their time to present their points carefully and deliberately, as though they want to make sure we understand what they are talking about. Several paragraphs are dedicated to explaining each point clearly, with some repetition of the concepts. However, they seem to have lost some steam when it came to the evidence supporting these points, in that their so-called evidence comes across as nothing but opinion and belief, with connections that seem forced and at times illogical.
Don't forget to bring your essay to a close by providing a well constructed conclusion.
What is a conclusion?
A conclusion is not
A conclusion should tie everything together in a meaningful way, with simple but powerful words that will leave a lasting impression on your audience. Think of your conclusion as your parting shot, your last chance to impress and enlighten your audience. Make it count by not repeating what you've said before, but by finding ways of enhancing the content and creating closure. And do not start your conclusion with "in conclusion." Your conclusion should feel like a conclusion without you announcing it is.