Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, So, I’m a Mom Now… will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
One of my goals this year is to read 24 books. That may seem like a lot but it is quite a few less than I typically read in a year. I am almost guaranteed to read 12 because I have a book club and we read different books every month. But I want to try to read 2 books per month as a way to get back to my typical adult reading habit.
Before M was born I would spend a good weekend curled up in bed with a good book. I would devour book after book as a way to “zone out” of my stressful Head Start job. But fast forward to having an 8-month-old who sleeps in our bedroom, there is no time for reading now.
And I didn’t read, at least not really for at least the first 6 months. I even skipped out on books for book club, which is so not like me. So, to get back into my reading habit I have made the goal of 24 books this year.
I’m off to a pretty good start, 2 books completed so far and it’s only the 4th week of February. As you know, if you’ve been following me reading is a huge passion of mine. I share all kinds of posts about why reading to kids is important, tips for reading to your child, tips for getting your reluctant reader reading, etc. But I haven’t shared much for adults with regards to reading.
Well, that changes today. Along with my goal of reading 24 books this year, I also want to write adult book recommendations for the blog. Of course, I wasn’t sure where to even start…I tried to write a book review for The Royal We, and the first draft did not go well. So, I wanted to figure out the best way for me to write a book review.
I read tons of other book reviews from other bloggers, I read questions to answer in a book review, I searched through Goodreads.com and looked a good review and bad, and I thought about my book club and the questions we always google for the discussion about the book. And I’ve compiled a list of the things to think about to include when I write book reviews.
Book Review Questions:
This is the first part of any book review. You have to let people know what book you’re reviewing, who wrote the book, and what genre the book falls into.
This section of the review should be where the overview of the book lives. Include main characters and a short/brief overview of the main plot. DO NOT GIVE AWAY TOO MUCH! Because, if you do, what would be the point of others going to get that book to read…
This is where your personal feelings about the book can live. It is easy to get stuck in this part of the review if you loved the book, and even more so if you hated the book. If you hated the book still try to write an honest review but try to write it in as a constructive critique instead of hate mail. Try to use positive words, without sarcasm. Imagine that the author(s) gave you the book and asked you to review it to help promote the book. Think constructive feedback.
If you are writing a review to caution readers against reading the book, make sure to include clear reasons. Of course, on the other hand, you would want to include clearly outline reasons for loving a book as well.
Other points to consider:
- Take time when writing your review. Really give the review substance
- Try reading other reviews of the book. These can help give you an idea of how to structure and key points you want to remember to include in your review.
- Don’t review the book the author should have written, write your review of the actual book in your hands. You don’t want to review/criticize the author(s) for failing to write something they never intended to write or achieve.
Suggested points to include in your review:
- Did you like the characters? Were they credible and/or believable?
- What kinds of problems did the main character(s) face in the book?
- Who was your favorite character? Why?
- Were you able to relate to any of the characters in the book?
- What was your favorite part of the book? (Don’t give away too much!)
- What was your least favorite part of the book?
- Is there something you wish you could’ve changed in the book? (Don’t give away too much… If it was the ending you would’ve changed, don’t say what the ending was!)
- Would you recommend this book?
- Who would enjoy this book? What time of reader?
This is the last part of your book review. The final paragraph is where you’ll want to summarize your opinion of the book. Think of the conclusion as a place where you will endorse or reject the book. Encouraging readers to purchase the book or bypass it in favor of something else. Try to remember your review is simply an opportunity to share your thoughts and hopefully provide a little insight and guidance into choosing a book for your audience.