Book Review Tips: Summarize the Book's Content and Evaluate It

There are many things to consider including in a book review. Depending on the required length of the book review, the minimum is to write one paragraph on each of the following concepts. For longer reports, the paragraph topics can be divided into two or three paragraphs.

  • Summary
  • The first paragraph should be a brief summary of the book. Decide on the main idea of the book and create a topic sentences for that idea. Then write 3 sentences that support the main idea using concepts from the book. The last sentence will be a conclusion sentence that refers back to the main idea and draws the attention of the audience.

  • Characters
  • The next paragraph should talk about the main characters of the book. For longer book reviews, one paragraph can be devoted to each of the main characters. Briefly describe the characters and discuss their role in the book.

  • Setting
  • Then write about the setting of the story. Tell when and where the story takes place. Then also tell the significance of the setting. This doesn't usually require more than one paragraph.

  • Plot
  • Next write about the plot of the story. This can be done in one paragraph but would be more effective if done in at least 3 paragraphs. In the first plot paragraph, write about what happens in the first part of the book. In the next paragraph write about what happens in the middle of the book. In the last plot paragraph write about what happens during the end of the book.

  • Evaluate
  • The rest of the book review will be spent evaluating the book. These paragraphs can be spread out throughout the book review or provided altogether at the end. Some of the things to evaluate are: the individual characters, different themes of the book, and different plotlines. Other things to include in the book review are the genre, the perspective of the book, and reactions when reading the book.

  • Conclusion
  • The last paragraph is the conclusion. Give a personal opinion of the book and tell the reader a recommendation whether or not to read the book.