How to Write a Critical Book Review
This is the book: Maiden Voyage is a book about college aged Tania and her sail around the world all alone. It is a quick, easy read, and I believe that you will find it enjoyable as well. Her “record” has been broken several times since she sailed. It is remarkable for a lone female, especially considering her youth.
Your review should do two things: 1) inform the reader about the content of the book and a little background on the author, and 2) evaluate the book’s quality based on your own judgment.
The introduction of your review should include an overview of the book that both incorporates a short summary and a sense of your general judgment. (This is the equivalent to a thesis statement if this was a regular essay.)
Do NOT spend more than one-third of so of the paper summarizing the book. (That is what high school book reports do, and college students are more capable than that.) The summary should consist of a discussion and highlights of the major arguments, features, concepts, themes, ideas, and characteristics of the book. While you may use direct quotes from the book (make sure you always use quotation marks and provide the page number), such quotes should NOT be the bulk of the summary. It really should be in your own words. Quotes are far more effective when used sparingly. Much of your grade will depend on how well you describe and explain the material in your own words. Show me you have read the entire book. You might want to take the major organizing themes of the book and use them to organize your own discussion. This does NOT mean, however, that I want a chapter-by-chapter summary. Your goal is a unified essay. You may want to organize it by time periods or regions of the globe.
Some sites that may guide you further in figuring out what to write about or answer questions you may have right now:
http://www.lavc.edu/library/bookreview.htm (skip down to the history or other non-fiction section)
** REMEMBER TO INCLUDE THE INFORMATION ON HOW YOU MAIN CHARACTER FITS THE MOLD OF A HERO IN A HERO’S JOURNEY.**
This is the link for hero journey :
Plan on writing at LEAST THREE drafts. Good writing is a process and it takes time. Print, then get out a red pen, and go at it with a careful eye. There should not be any typos, sentence fragments, missing words, incomplete thoughts, misspelled words, etc. MLA formatting style should be followed, therefore PRESENT TENSE VERBS should be used when discussing the literature. Example: “Tania Aebi writes in her autobiography. . .”
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