How to write a book review for grad school

Posted on November 30, by Scott Alexander I.

How to write a book review for grad school

Your introduction should include an overview of the book that both incorporates an encapsulated summary and a sense of your general judgment. This is the equivalent to a thesis statement.

Do NOT spend more than one-third or so of the paper summarizing the book.

The Best Ways to Write a Book Review - wikiHow

The summary should consist of a discussion and highlights of the major arguments, features, trends, concepts, themes, ideas, and characteristics of the book. While you may use direct quotes from the book make sure you always give the page numbersuch quotes should never be the bulk of the summary.

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. So what do I want, if not just a summary? Throughout your summary, I want you to provide a critique of the book. It is not necessarily negative. Nor do you need to know as much about the subject as the author because you hardly ever will.

The skills you need are an ability to follow an argument and test a hypothesis. Regardless of how negative or positive your critique is, you need to be able to justify and support your position. Here are a number of questions that you can address as part of your critique.

You need not answer them all, but questions one and two are essential to any book review, so those must be included.

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The answers should be part of a carefully constructed essay, complete with topic sentences and transitions. What is your overall opinion of the book? On what basis has this opinion been formulated?

how to write a book review for grad school

That is, tell the reader what you think and how you arrived at this judgment. What did you expect to learn when you picked up the book?

To what extent — and how effectively — were your expectations met?Schools within a school district can have similar names, so please review your selection carefully to avoid ordering errors. Continue Cancel. How to Write a Book Review: The Gordin Method October 25, Michael Gordin, an omnivorous historian of science at Princeton University, is known for many intellectual feats, among them the “Gordin method” of book reviewing.

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How to Write a Critical Book Review Your review should have two goals: first, to inform the reader about the content of the book, and second, to provide an evaluation .

You all know that the book proposal is the cornerstone to a successful tenure track career in most areas of the humanities and social sciences. Sure, some parts of psychology and economics and other fields are not book-based, but basically, the law of the land is: write a book.

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