How to write a good book review

John Millen
John Millen |

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On November 19th, John Millen, the YP book reviewer, held a workshop about how to write a book review with some Young Post junior reporters. Here are the main points that were discussed at the workshop.

1. As you are reading the book you are going to review, always have a notebook at hand and make notes about your thoughts.

2. Your book review must have a definite shape. It mustn’t just be a muddled account of what you think about the book.

3. Your opening paragraph should be short and it should make the reader interested in reading what is to follow.

4. The opening paragraph should introduce the book in any way you think is interesting.

5. The main three or four paragraphs of the review should talk about story, character, setting and the author’s writing style.

6. Your review is also a recommendation so try and make the reader interested in reading the book for him/herself.

7. Don’t use phrases such as ‘I think that……’, ‘I believe that …..’ in your review. Try and keep the word ‘I’ out of your writing.

8. Always give reasons for your opinions.

9. The closing paragraph should sum up what you think of the book.

10. The closing paragraph should neatly ‘end’ your review. You should leave the reading feeling that you have nothing more to say about the book.

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