I hope this post finds you well. I wish that you are staying home as well.
I have been asked many times about ‘how to review a book’. I may not be the best out there for reviewing a book but at least I have my voice. So I thought of sharing my ideas and tips about this. Whether you are a student (because I have received a question from a student about summarizing a book for school) Or a new ‘bookstagrammer’. Maybe you want to upgrade your goodreads account by sharing your thoughts after reading a book.. Or you just simply want to share your thoughts and opinion about the books you read online or with others.
Here are my humble thoughts that will hopefully help you review books better.
First of all, you need to be confident about your opinion and you shouldn’t be scared to let out your thoughts. Even if some people disagreed with you it is ok because you are speaking from an experience that you got out from the book and there is no wrong or right in it. The sooner you adapt to this mindset, the more relaxed you became when sharing your opinion around people who might end up completely disagreeing with you.
This takes me to the second point, is to accept that people will in fact disagree with you. You can either listen to them and see if their point of view makes sense to you or just agree to disagree. You don’t have to argue about it. If we all read one book we will not have the same thought afterwards. We are different people, and we will definitely focus on different things.
In the beginning you need to be biased by sharing a synopsis of the book. For example here is a snippet of one of the books I shared my thoughts on.. As you read you will not really see me say anything about my own feelings. I am only stating what the book is about.
When wanting to review share what the book is about without spoiling it; Meaning don’t talk about the plot twist that happens or who dies or reveal the killer am I making sense…? Instead just share in general the book’s time, theme, purpose that wants to teach you or shares with you.
Secondly, you need to include a hook to grab the readers attention. The hook could be a quote (excerpt) from the book. Or a question you ask so it gets whoever reads your review more interested in knowing more.
So, we are done now from explaining what the book is about. Now start by sharing your personal thoughts on it. I would suggest you would begin with the good things then the cons about the book. The sooner you share your negative thoughts first, I as a reader will most likely not consider reading the book at all or continue with the review. Be constructive in your negative comment. Instead of saying “I hate this book” ” I didn’t like it at all” Or some would go out of their way to also hate on the author; which is something I really don’t recommend…. Let me share with you bits of my reviews of books that I didn’t like much without saying the words
‘I didn’t like this book’ Here are two different reviews from two books I read last year:
If you are using your Instagram to review books. Try as much as you can to keep your captions short and straight forward Here is a structure for you to make it easier in a way:
- A quote from the book
- What is it about (brief)
- Your main thoughts (likes and dislikes)
- If you recommend this book (To who and why?)
You can play around this but I think you get the point.
- Mention the genre of the book. If it is a non fiction/fiction… etc
- You can discuss also if the title of the book has anything to do with its content. Or if it has a story behind it. Maybe you can use that as a hook as well.
- Be specific when you start with what the book is about.. Don’t drag it to situations that occurred or events happened in the book.
- When you recommend or don’t recommend state your why.
- You can also share if you relate to the book or a certain character in the story or maybe the theme or timing?
- Don’t be scared to review a bestselling book/famous author. You don’t have to agree with everyone when they all say that they love the book. You can stand by your opinion in not liking it or vice versa,
So do not be intimidated to use your voice and say what you truly think.