How To Write A Book Critique
A book critique writing is not equivalent to a book review. Most people confuse the two to be the same. Here is the difference for you! A book review is a summarized version of the book. A book critique, on the other hand, is both an analysis and an evaluation of the book. In a book critique, more attention is given to the assessment of the book and not the summary. You assume that your audience has read the book; hence it is your critical analysis that could be essential to them.
Steps towards a Good Book Critique
Read the Book!
You cannot write a good critique of a book you have not read. When reading the book, make notes of the important points. It is also critical that you identify sections that you need to pay special attention to. You may also consider going through some reviews of the book from different writers. They might help you comprehend the content of the book. Note that you must list the citations of all the book reviews you use at the end of the review.
This part should clearly give full bibliographic data of the book. Hence, information about the author and the book title should be stated. Publishing information such as the publisher, the date of publishing and number of pages of the book may also be included. Conclude the introduction by giving a general statement that indicates the content of the book and your reaction to it.
Book Summary: In one paragraph, briefly give a review or rather, the scope of the book. Highlight the main ideas of the author, and the important sections you identified while reading the book in ‘Read the book’ step above.
Book Evaluation: This is the backbone of your critique. Hence, exhaustively analyze the book and give your judgment on the effectiveness of the author to prove his thesis. Any quotations from the book should be followed by the page number in parenthesis. Your critique should not be based on your personal expectations but the stated objectives of the author. Note that your critique should not be just negative. The author will obviously have some strengths and weaknesses in his literary work!
Answers to the questions below will form your critique conclusion.
To what extent is the book suitable for the target audience?
- Is the book worth reading?
- What is its utility to the readers?
- Would you recommend the book to other readers?
Note: A full citation of the book you are critiquing must be given either at the beginning or the end of the critique.