How to Write a Book Review

Literature can be defined as a written work that has artistic value. Short story, novels, poetry etc are commonly classified as literature. Sometimes literature is also referred any kind of written work, not just creative writing.

A literary work – which includes fiction (short stories, flash fictions, novels, novellas, and drama), non-fiction (essay, biography, memoir) and poetry – can be analyzed in different ways, for instance you can write a literary analysis, review or critique.

A book review is one of the common ways to analyze literature. Interestingly, there is money to be made from reviewing books. There are many sites where you can publish book reviews and make money from your reviews. You can also earn commissions by selling books you sell through review by placing affiliate links of the book in your review.

In order to write a book review, you much understand different kinds of literary evaluation terminologies.


Synopsis is a summary of your written work. Synopsis include the basic storyline and character analysis. Synopsis is very important part of book review. While reviewing a book, you must give the synopsis without revealing too much about the story. Synopsis should not be a spoiler.

Synopsis is also very important part of pitching you book. If you have written a book and want to publish it, the first step of publishing process is sending the synopsis to the publisher, instead of entire manuscript. After reading the synopsis, when the publisher sees some potential in the book, he/she asks for chapter-by-chapter outline. You will have to send the manuscript to the publisher only when your chapter-by-chapter outline is approved. The first contact between the writer and publisher is through synopsis.

Literary analysis

Literary analysis is an evaluation of a literary work through a certain perspective, or ideology to be precise. Literary analysis is done through different ideas or point of view such as Marxism, feminism, Buddhism, colonialism, post colonialism etc.


Critique is a minute evaluation of a literary work. It analyzes the content, form, structure and substance of the literary work. Critique explores different elements of the literature.


Review is a general study of literature. It is similar to critique in some aspect, but the only difference between the two is review presents basic reading of the literature, while critique is minute observation. Review is a balance analysis that states the good points as well as bad points of literature. While reviewing the book, the reviewer should compare the book with other book on the similar topic as well as with the books from the same author.

Photo source: author


    1. Profile photo of Vinaya
      Vinaya Post author

      Thanks for the tweet. Reviewing books you read also help you create a new article.

    1. Profile photo of Vinaya
      Vinaya Post author

      Good thing about reviewing books is it takes so little time (since your background work has already been done when you read the book).

    1. Profile photo of Vinaya
      Vinaya Post author

      If you love reading books, I am sure you will also enjoy reviewing the books that you have read.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *