How to Write a Compelling Book Review in Five Easy Steps

A lot of people have told me recently that they don’t know how to write a good book review. They don’t know what to put in it, they don’t know what would be valuable to other readers, they don’t know where to start.

So here are five simple steps for writing a killer book review and after this you will no longer have an excuse for not writing a book review because you will have this formula to help you. Before getting started with the five simple steps I just want to add in an optional step that would be at the beginning, if you choose to use it and that is the summary of the book. Most things like Goodreads and and Barnes & Noble they’ll have a description already on the page where the book is shown but if you choose to write a summary or if there’s a place where your review will be shown, where there isn’t already a summary then here’s how you would do it.

A good summary has three key points in it:

  1. Introduce the main character introduce.
  2. The main conflict
  3. Introduce a question.

For example, if you were to summarize the Lord of the Rings, you would write something along the lines of when Frodo Baggins inherits his uncle’s magic ring, he little knows that it is the deadliest weapon in middle-earth. Nor that the mysterious Dark Lord Sauron has sent his nine black riders to recover the ring which was lost many years ago. Will Frodo be able to destroy the ring without succumbing to the temptation of its power.

As you can see that has all three elements as the main character it has the main conflict and it has the main question that the story answers. Now the question doesn’t necessarily have to be a

Question: it could be phrased like a statement but in such a way that it’s kind of arouses a question in the readers mind. For example, you could substitute the last sentence of the summary that I just gave with this statement as Frodo journeys to destroy the ring he struggles not to succumb to the temptation of its power. So, there’s your optional summary.

Following are step to write an effective book review:

Step one: Describe your overall opinion.

This overview is important because, you want to give the overview to explain. I really did like this book here are my cons first and now here are the pros and that way readers would be able to realize the entirety of your opinion and not just be thrown off by the specifics of the cons and the pros. Just give an overview of how you felt about the book. It could be something along the lines like.

  • I really enjoyed this story because it was very well read and had strong characters unfortunately some of the content was a little bit of offensive to me.

This will at least give people an overview of your general feelings why you gave it so many stars or whatever in the rating. Moreover, the pros and cons will be discussed more specifically later in your review. So, people will be able to understand what it is that you picked out specifically that was good or not so good about the story.

Step Two: Discuss the Cons

I like leaving the more positive things for the end because that’s what people tend to

remember most is the thing that they read last. So just to be fair to the author and to kind of be able to elevate the books merits above its faults, I just feel like it’s most fair to be able to discuss its faults first and then its merits second. So that that will select

the merits are what’s going to stick in the reader’s mind. So, the cons discuss things anything that you didn’t like or that you didn’t feel was particularly well done. Here are some.

opening sentences that you can finish:

  • The book would have been more enjoyable for me if…….
  • I would have enjoyed the book more if……
  • I feel like this book was particularly weak in the area of……
  • I was concerned or disappointed by……

Step Three: Discuss potentially offensive content.

Generally, the three that you want to go for are the violent sex and bad language. Because that’s what most people look for when they’re concerned about an offensive content. when you do this it is best to be as objective as possible.

Step Four: Describe the pros

These are its merits or the things that it did particularly well. Following are some ways that. You can start your sentences might be:

  • I enjoyed this book because….
  • I felt this book was particularly strong in the area of…….
  • I especially appreciated……

so, basically just talk about the things that you enjoyed and the aspects that you most appreciated about the story. Whether that’s characters or content whatever that might be.

Step Five: Quote an Excerpt

Make sure that it does not have any spoilers because you don’t want to spoil anything for anybody. But you do kind of want to get the flavor of the book and people love excerpts. It shouldn’t be very long you can write couple paragraphs maybe even a couple sentences. It’s also a way to make your review stand out because not a lot of people do that but people really like seeing an excerpt of the book and getting a feel for the story itself straight from the books pages and not just from a reviewer. I recommend that you take a portion with dialogue, because dialogue shows a lot of interaction but if you don’t take dialogue then do some other action type sequence. Because that is kind of like a teaser trailer for the book it just shows all the most exciting parts.

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