Independent Reading Review:

  1. Select an Independent Reading Book
  2. Read it
  3. Write a review in the discussion area

Instructions for the Preparation of Book Reviews
I. The Book Review: The purpose of a book review is twofold. The reviewer wishes, first, to inform the reader about the book under consideration. More important, the reviewer seeks to present an evaluation of the book.

II. Reading the Book:
  • A. Begin with questions in your mind: Who wrote the book? Is he/she qualified to write on the subject chosen? What is the book about? Why did the author write the book? Does the title preview the topic? Does the book engage the reader? If you ask yourself these and other pertinent questions before you begin to read, you will be in a good position to evaluate the book.
  • B. Read the body of the work carefully, noting important passages.

III. Evaluation. While reading the book, take note of the elements of storytelling and how effective the author is in engaging the reader.
  • - What is the subject of the book? - Does the book treat the subject in detail or in general terms?
  • - In what sort of style (i.e. popular, elegant, etc.) is the book written?
  • - Is the book well organized and constructed?
  • - When was the book written?
  • - Is it similar to something you have read or predictable?

IV. Preparing to Write the Review: Once you have read the book and understand it, and once you have evaluated it, you are ready to write your review. Having decided on the point your review will make (i.e. this is a engaging, well-developed and carefully written book or this book is so badly written or so predictable that the publisher should not have wasted good paper on it or this is a fascinating book but it could have been better in this way). Write an introductory paragraph containing the title and author of the book, a sentence about the author, a brief description of the book's contents, and an indication of what your review will say. The following two or three paragraphs (i.e. the body of the review) will probably contain a statement of the topic of the book and the story development (do not include spoilers!) and your evaluation of the book. When you have finished the review, write a concluding paragraph in which a summary of your review's most important points is made.

V. Citation. At the top of your post, give a full citation for the book read in APA format.

Reference List: Books

Summary: APA (American Psychological Association) is most commonly used to cite sources within the social sciences.

Basic Format for Books

Author, A. A. (Year of publication). Title of work: Capital letter also for subtitle. Location: Publisher.

Note: For "Location," you should always list the city and the state using the two letter postal abbreviation without periods (New York, NY).

Calfee, R. C., & Valencia, R. R. (1991). APA guide to preparing manuscripts for journal publication. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

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