Writing Book Reviews


Some people struggle when it comes to writing book reviews, especially lengthy reviews. This post provides tips and advice on how to write a decent review. Authors love nothing more than when a reader posts a review on their book on Amazon, Goodreads, book blogs and more, either when their books are recommended to your friends. I have been blogging and reviewing books for three years. I receive books / eBooks from either authors / publishers, or via Netgalley.

Did you enjoy the book?

Great. If you liked the book, then leave a review for the author! Reviews help authors more than you may think. Recommend the book to your friends, discuss the book online, share it with others 🙂

Did you dislike the book?

Reviews where readers tear a book to shreds isn’t ever a nice thing to do. An authors heart and soul has gone into that book. It’s fine not to like the book, and it’s fine to state the reasons why the book wasn’t for you. Perhaps it can help the author improve for their next book, and what to look out for. But ensure it’s constructive criticism, and not mean book bashing. I have read many books that didn’t do it for me. I was still able to write things that I did like about the book though.

Writing the review.

Sometimes, when it comes to writing a review, a readers mind can go blank. Here are some Q’s that may help you when writing out a review. If you apply some of these answers, then you can’t really go wrong.

A review if you did like the book:

1.What first attracted you to the book? Was it the cover, the blurb, the authors name, a recommendation? State this.

2.What did you enjoy about the book? Was it a certain character, the setting, a surprise twist, a gripping cliffhanger, the writing style?

3.What do you think of the authors writing style? You could perhaps say it was funny, well written, light and humorous, dark and gripping, etc.

4.Was there a particular character, or characters that you liked? If so, state why.

5.Would you read a book by this author again? If yes, state this.

A review if you didn’t like the book:

1.What initially attracted you to the book? Was it the cover, the blurb, the authors name, a recommendation? State this.

2.What part of the book didn’t do it for you? Perhaps it was a certain character, not enough action, an unexpected ending. There’s nothing wrong with voicing your opinions, however there is a nice way to go about it.

3.What did you wish was different about the book? Was it a character that you wished stood up for themselves for, a plot with more action, a topic you couldn’t get your head around, an ending that disappointed you. Again, there’s a polite way to provide the author with constructive criticism.

4.Was there anything you liked at all about the book? Surely there was something you liked about it. A compliment to soften the not so good review helps a ton. Perhaps you liked the cover, the blurb, a character, the setting, the writing style etc. State this.

So, there you have it. Apply the above answers in your review, and you should have at least five sentences.

Need an example template to work from? Feel free to use the below.

What did you think of the book cover?

What did you think of the book blurb?

What did you think of the authors writing style?

Did you have a favourite character? If so, why.

Did you feel connected to the characters, such as you rooted for their happiness? If so, state why.

Did any elements of the story surprise, shock, scare, make you cry, or pull you in? If so, *without spoiler* which parts?

Did you like where the story was set? (The country / city setting, a club / bar / restaurant.)

Did the book reach a satisfactory ending? If so, state this.

What did you like most about the book overall?

Would you read a book from this author again? If so, state this.





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