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How to Write an Article Review

Last Updated: September 8, 2023 Fact Checked

This article was co-authored by Jake Adams . Jake Adams is an academic tutor and the owner of Simplifi EDU, a Santa Monica, California based online tutoring business offering learning resources and online tutors for academic subjects K-College, SAT & ACT prep, and college admissions applications. With over 14 years of professional tutoring experience, Jake is dedicated to providing his clients the very best online tutoring experience and access to a network of excellent undergraduate and graduate-level tutors from top colleges all over the nation. Jake holds a BS in International Business and Marketing from Pepperdine University. There are 13 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 3,065,705 times.

An article review is both a summary and an evaluation of another writer's article. Teachers often assign article reviews to introduce students to the work of experts in the field. Experts also are often asked to review the work of other professionals. Understanding the main points and arguments of the article is essential for an accurate summation. Logical evaluation of the article's main theme, supporting arguments, and implications for further research is an important element of a review . Here are a few guidelines for writing an article review.

Education specialist Alexander Peterman recommends: "In the case of a review, your objective should be to reflect on the effectiveness of what has already been written, rather than writing to inform your audience about a subject."

Things You Should Know

  • Read the article very closely, and then take time to reflect on your evaluation. Consider whether the article effectively achieves what it set out to.
  • Write out a full article review by completing your intro, summary, evaluation, and conclusion. Don't forget to add a title, too!
  • Proofread your review for mistakes (like grammar and usage), while also cutting down on needless information. [1] X Research source

Preparing to Write Your Review

Step 1 Understand what an article review is.

  • Article reviews present more than just an opinion. You will engage with the text to create a response to the scholarly writer's ideas. You will respond to and use ideas, theories, and research from your studies. Your critique of the article will be based on proof and your own thoughtful reasoning.
  • An article review only responds to the author's research. It typically does not provide any new research. However, if you are correcting misleading or otherwise incorrect points, some new data may be presented.
  • An article review both summarizes and evaluates the article.

Step 2 Think about the organization of the review article.

  • Summarize the article. Focus on the important points, claims, and information.
  • Discuss the positive aspects of the article. Think about what the author does well, good points she makes, and insightful observations.
  • Identify contradictions, gaps, and inconsistencies in the text. Determine if there is enough data or research included to support the author's claims. Find any unanswered questions left in the article.

Step 3 Preview the article.

  • Make note of words or issues you don't understand and questions you have.
  • Look up terms or concepts you are unfamiliar with, so you can fully understand the article. Read about concepts in-depth to make sure you understand their full context.

Step 4 Read the article closely.

  • Pay careful attention to the meaning of the article. Make sure you fully understand the article. The only way to write a good article review is to understand the article.

Step 5 Put the article into your words.

  • With either method, make an outline of the main points made in the article and the supporting research or arguments. It is strictly a restatement of the main points of the article and does not include your opinions.
  • After putting the article in your own words, decide which parts of the article you want to discuss in your review. You can focus on the theoretical approach, the content, the presentation or interpretation of evidence, or the style. You will always discuss the main issues of the article, but you can sometimes also focus on certain aspects. This comes in handy if you want to focus the review towards the content of a course.
  • Review the summary outline to eliminate unnecessary items. Erase or cross out the less important arguments or supplemental information. Your revised summary can serve as the basis for the summary you provide at the beginning of your review.

Step 6 Write an outline of your evaluation.

  • What does the article set out to do?
  • What is the theoretical framework or assumptions?
  • Are the central concepts clearly defined?
  • How adequate is the evidence?
  • How does the article fit into the literature and field?
  • Does it advance the knowledge of the subject?
  • How clear is the author's writing? Don't: include superficial opinions or your personal reaction. Do: pay attention to your biases, so you can overcome them.

Writing the Article Review

Step 1 Come up with...

  • For example, in MLA , a citation may look like: Duvall, John N. "The (Super)Marketplace of Images: Television as Unmediated Mediation in DeLillo's White Noise ." Arizona Quarterly 50.3 (1994): 127-53. Print. [10] X Trustworthy Source Purdue Online Writing Lab Trusted resource for writing and citation guidelines Go to source

Step 3 Identify the article.

  • For example: The article, "Condom use will increase the spread of AIDS," was written by Anthony Zimmerman, a Catholic priest.

Step 4 Write the introduction....

  • Your introduction should only be 10-25% of your review.
  • End the introduction with your thesis. Your thesis should address the above issues. For example: Although the author has some good points, his article is biased and contains some misinterpretation of data from others’ analysis of the effectiveness of the condom.

Step 5 Summarize the article.

  • Use direct quotes from the author sparingly.
  • Review the summary you have written. Read over your summary many times to ensure that your words are an accurate description of the author's article.

Step 6 Write your critique.

  • Support your critique with evidence from the article or other texts.
  • The summary portion is very important for your critique. You must make the author's argument clear in the summary section for your evaluation to make sense.
  • Remember, this is not where you say if you liked the article or not. You are assessing the significance and relevance of the article.
  • Use a topic sentence and supportive arguments for each opinion. For example, you might address a particular strength in the first sentence of the opinion section, followed by several sentences elaborating on the significance of the point.

Step 7 Conclude the article review.

  • This should only be about 10% of your overall essay.
  • For example: This critical review has evaluated the article "Condom use will increase the spread of AIDS" by Anthony Zimmerman. The arguments in the article show the presence of bias, prejudice, argumentative writing without supporting details, and misinformation. These points weaken the author’s arguments and reduce his credibility.

Step 8 Proofread.

  • Make sure you have identified and discussed the 3-4 key issues in the article.

Sample Article Reviews

a review title

Expert Q&A

Jake Adams

You Might Also Like

Write Articles

  • ↑ https://writing.wisc.edu/handbook/grammarpunct/proofreading/
  • ↑ https://libguides.cmich.edu/writinghelp/articlereview
  • ↑ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4548566/
  • ↑ Jake Adams. Academic Tutor & Test Prep Specialist. Expert Interview. 24 July 2020.
  • ↑ https://guides.library.queensu.ca/introduction-research/writing/critical
  • ↑ https://www.iup.edu/writingcenter/writing-resources/organization-and-structure/creating-an-outline.html
  • ↑ https://writing.umn.edu/sws/assets/pdf/quicktips/titles.pdf
  • ↑ https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/research_and_citation/mla_style/mla_formatting_and_style_guide/mla_works_cited_periodicals.html
  • ↑ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4548565/
  • ↑ https://writingcenter.uconn.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/593/2014/06/How_to_Summarize_a_Research_Article1.pdf
  • ↑ https://www.uis.edu/learning-hub/writing-resources/handouts/learning-hub/how-to-review-a-journal-article
  • ↑ https://writingcenter.unc.edu/tips-and-tools/editing-and-proofreading/

About This Article

Jake Adams

If you have to write an article review, read through the original article closely, taking notes and highlighting important sections as you read. Next, rewrite the article in your own words, either in a long paragraph or as an outline. Open your article review by citing the article, then write an introduction which states the article’s thesis. Next, summarize the article, followed by your opinion about whether the article was clear, thorough, and useful. Finish with a paragraph that summarizes the main points of the article and your opinions. To learn more about what to include in your personal critique of the article, keep reading the article! Did this summary help you? Yes No

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The Writing Center • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Book Reviews

What this handout is about.

This handout will help you write a book review, a report or essay that offers a critical perspective on a text. It offers a process and suggests some strategies for writing book reviews.

What is a review?

A review is a critical evaluation of a text, event, object, or phenomenon. Reviews can consider books, articles, entire genres or fields of literature, architecture, art, fashion, restaurants, policies, exhibitions, performances, and many other forms. This handout will focus on book reviews. For a similar assignment, see our handout on literature reviews .

Above all, a review makes an argument. The most important element of a review is that it is a commentary, not merely a summary. It allows you to enter into dialogue and discussion with the work’s creator and with other audiences. You can offer agreement or disagreement and identify where you find the work exemplary or deficient in its knowledge, judgments, or organization. You should clearly state your opinion of the work in question, and that statement will probably resemble other types of academic writing, with a thesis statement, supporting body paragraphs, and a conclusion.

Typically, reviews are brief. In newspapers and academic journals, they rarely exceed 1000 words, although you may encounter lengthier assignments and extended commentaries. In either case, reviews need to be succinct. While they vary in tone, subject, and style, they share some common features:

  • First, a review gives the reader a concise summary of the content. This includes a relevant description of the topic as well as its overall perspective, argument, or purpose.
  • Second, and more importantly, a review offers a critical assessment of the content. This involves your reactions to the work under review: what strikes you as noteworthy, whether or not it was effective or persuasive, and how it enhanced your understanding of the issues at hand.
  • Finally, in addition to analyzing the work, a review often suggests whether or not the audience would appreciate it.

Becoming an expert reviewer: three short examples

Reviewing can be a daunting task. Someone has asked for your opinion about something that you may feel unqualified to evaluate. Who are you to criticize Toni Morrison’s new book if you’ve never written a novel yourself, much less won a Nobel Prize? The point is that someone—a professor, a journal editor, peers in a study group—wants to know what you think about a particular work. You may not be (or feel like) an expert, but you need to pretend to be one for your particular audience. Nobody expects you to be the intellectual equal of the work’s creator, but your careful observations can provide you with the raw material to make reasoned judgments. Tactfully voicing agreement and disagreement, praise and criticism, is a valuable, challenging skill, and like many forms of writing, reviews require you to provide concrete evidence for your assertions.

Consider the following brief book review written for a history course on medieval Europe by a student who is fascinated with beer:

Judith Bennett’s Ale, Beer, and Brewsters in England: Women’s Work in a Changing World, 1300-1600, investigates how women used to brew and sell the majority of ale drunk in England. Historically, ale and beer (not milk, wine, or water) were important elements of the English diet. Ale brewing was low-skill and low status labor that was complimentary to women’s domestic responsibilities. In the early fifteenth century, brewers began to make ale with hops, and they called this new drink “beer.” This technique allowed brewers to produce their beverages at a lower cost and to sell it more easily, although women generally stopped brewing once the business became more profitable.

The student describes the subject of the book and provides an accurate summary of its contents. But the reader does not learn some key information expected from a review: the author’s argument, the student’s appraisal of the book and its argument, and whether or not the student would recommend the book. As a critical assessment, a book review should focus on opinions, not facts and details. Summary should be kept to a minimum, and specific details should serve to illustrate arguments.

Now consider a review of the same book written by a slightly more opinionated student:

Judith Bennett’s Ale, Beer, and Brewsters in England: Women’s Work in a Changing World, 1300-1600 was a colossal disappointment. I wanted to know about the rituals surrounding drinking in medieval England: the songs, the games, the parties. Bennett provided none of that information. I liked how the book showed ale and beer brewing as an economic activity, but the reader gets lost in the details of prices and wages. I was more interested in the private lives of the women brewsters. The book was divided into eight long chapters, and I can’t imagine why anyone would ever want to read it.

There’s no shortage of judgments in this review! But the student does not display a working knowledge of the book’s argument. The reader has a sense of what the student expected of the book, but no sense of what the author herself set out to prove. Although the student gives several reasons for the negative review, those examples do not clearly relate to each other as part of an overall evaluation—in other words, in support of a specific thesis. This review is indeed an assessment, but not a critical one.

Here is one final review of the same book:

One of feminism’s paradoxes—one that challenges many of its optimistic histories—is how patriarchy remains persistent over time. While Judith Bennett’s Ale, Beer, and Brewsters in England: Women’s Work in a Changing World, 1300-1600 recognizes medieval women as historical actors through their ale brewing, it also shows that female agency had its limits with the advent of beer. I had assumed that those limits were religious and political, but Bennett shows how a “patriarchal equilibrium” shut women out of economic life as well. Her analysis of women’s wages in ale and beer production proves that a change in women’s work does not equate to a change in working women’s status. Contemporary feminists and historians alike should read Bennett’s book and think twice when they crack open their next brewsky.

This student’s review avoids the problems of the previous two examples. It combines balanced opinion and concrete example, a critical assessment based on an explicitly stated rationale, and a recommendation to a potential audience. The reader gets a sense of what the book’s author intended to demonstrate. Moreover, the student refers to an argument about feminist history in general that places the book in a specific genre and that reaches out to a general audience. The example of analyzing wages illustrates an argument, the analysis engages significant intellectual debates, and the reasons for the overall positive review are plainly visible. The review offers criteria, opinions, and support with which the reader can agree or disagree.

Developing an assessment: before you write

There is no definitive method to writing a review, although some critical thinking about the work at hand is necessary before you actually begin writing. Thus, writing a review is a two-step process: developing an argument about the work under consideration, and making that argument as you write an organized and well-supported draft. See our handout on argument .

What follows is a series of questions to focus your thinking as you dig into the work at hand. While the questions specifically consider book reviews, you can easily transpose them to an analysis of performances, exhibitions, and other review subjects. Don’t feel obligated to address each of the questions; some will be more relevant than others to the book in question.

  • What is the thesis—or main argument—of the book? If the author wanted you to get one idea from the book, what would it be? How does it compare or contrast to the world you know? What has the book accomplished?
  • What exactly is the subject or topic of the book? Does the author cover the subject adequately? Does the author cover all aspects of the subject in a balanced fashion? What is the approach to the subject (topical, analytical, chronological, descriptive)?
  • How does the author support their argument? What evidence do they use to prove their point? Do you find that evidence convincing? Why or why not? Does any of the author’s information (or conclusions) conflict with other books you’ve read, courses you’ve taken or just previous assumptions you had of the subject?
  • How does the author structure their argument? What are the parts that make up the whole? Does the argument make sense? Does it persuade you? Why or why not?
  • How has this book helped you understand the subject? Would you recommend the book to your reader?

Beyond the internal workings of the book, you may also consider some information about the author and the circumstances of the text’s production:

  • Who is the author? Nationality, political persuasion, training, intellectual interests, personal history, and historical context may provide crucial details about how a work takes shape. Does it matter, for example, that the biographer was the subject’s best friend? What difference would it make if the author participated in the events they write about?
  • What is the book’s genre? Out of what field does it emerge? Does it conform to or depart from the conventions of its genre? These questions can provide a historical or literary standard on which to base your evaluations. If you are reviewing the first book ever written on the subject, it will be important for your readers to know. Keep in mind, though, that naming “firsts”—alongside naming “bests” and “onlys”—can be a risky business unless you’re absolutely certain.

Writing the review

Once you have made your observations and assessments of the work under review, carefully survey your notes and attempt to unify your impressions into a statement that will describe the purpose or thesis of your review. Check out our handout on thesis statements . Then, outline the arguments that support your thesis.

Your arguments should develop the thesis in a logical manner. That logic, unlike more standard academic writing, may initially emphasize the author’s argument while you develop your own in the course of the review. The relative emphasis depends on the nature of the review: if readers may be more interested in the work itself, you may want to make the work and the author more prominent; if you want the review to be about your perspective and opinions, then you may structure the review to privilege your observations over (but never separate from) those of the work under review. What follows is just one of many ways to organize a review.

Introduction

Since most reviews are brief, many writers begin with a catchy quip or anecdote that succinctly delivers their argument. But you can introduce your review differently depending on the argument and audience. The Writing Center’s handout on introductions can help you find an approach that works. In general, you should include:

  • The name of the author and the book title and the main theme.
  • Relevant details about who the author is and where they stand in the genre or field of inquiry. You could also link the title to the subject to show how the title explains the subject matter.
  • The context of the book and/or your review. Placing your review in a framework that makes sense to your audience alerts readers to your “take” on the book. Perhaps you want to situate a book about the Cuban revolution in the context of Cold War rivalries between the United States and the Soviet Union. Another reviewer might want to consider the book in the framework of Latin American social movements. Your choice of context informs your argument.
  • The thesis of the book. If you are reviewing fiction, this may be difficult since novels, plays, and short stories rarely have explicit arguments. But identifying the book’s particular novelty, angle, or originality allows you to show what specific contribution the piece is trying to make.
  • Your thesis about the book.

Summary of content

This should be brief, as analysis takes priority. In the course of making your assessment, you’ll hopefully be backing up your assertions with concrete evidence from the book, so some summary will be dispersed throughout other parts of the review.

The necessary amount of summary also depends on your audience. Graduate students, beware! If you are writing book reviews for colleagues—to prepare for comprehensive exams, for example—you may want to devote more attention to summarizing the book’s contents. If, on the other hand, your audience has already read the book—such as a class assignment on the same work—you may have more liberty to explore more subtle points and to emphasize your own argument. See our handout on summary for more tips.

Analysis and evaluation of the book

Your analysis and evaluation should be organized into paragraphs that deal with single aspects of your argument. This arrangement can be challenging when your purpose is to consider the book as a whole, but it can help you differentiate elements of your criticism and pair assertions with evidence more clearly. You do not necessarily need to work chronologically through the book as you discuss it. Given the argument you want to make, you can organize your paragraphs more usefully by themes, methods, or other elements of the book. If you find it useful to include comparisons to other books, keep them brief so that the book under review remains in the spotlight. Avoid excessive quotation and give a specific page reference in parentheses when you do quote. Remember that you can state many of the author’s points in your own words.

Sum up or restate your thesis or make the final judgment regarding the book. You should not introduce new evidence for your argument in the conclusion. You can, however, introduce new ideas that go beyond the book if they extend the logic of your own thesis. This paragraph needs to balance the book’s strengths and weaknesses in order to unify your evaluation. Did the body of your review have three negative paragraphs and one favorable one? What do they all add up to? The Writing Center’s handout on conclusions can help you make a final assessment.

Finally, a few general considerations:

  • Review the book in front of you, not the book you wish the author had written. You can and should point out shortcomings or failures, but don’t criticize the book for not being something it was never intended to be.
  • With any luck, the author of the book worked hard to find the right words to express her ideas. You should attempt to do the same. Precise language allows you to control the tone of your review.
  • Never hesitate to challenge an assumption, approach, or argument. Be sure, however, to cite specific examples to back up your assertions carefully.
  • Try to present a balanced argument about the value of the book for its audience. You’re entitled—and sometimes obligated—to voice strong agreement or disagreement. But keep in mind that a bad book takes as long to write as a good one, and every author deserves fair treatment. Harsh judgments are difficult to prove and can give readers the sense that you were unfair in your assessment.
  • A great place to learn about book reviews is to look at examples. The New York Times Sunday Book Review and The New York Review of Books can show you how professional writers review books.

Works consulted

We consulted these works while writing this handout. This is not a comprehensive list of resources on the handout’s topic, and we encourage you to do your own research to find additional publications. Please do not use this list as a model for the format of your own reference list, as it may not match the citation style you are using. For guidance on formatting citations, please see the UNC Libraries citation tutorial . We revise these tips periodically and welcome feedback.

Drewry, John. 1974. Writing Book Reviews. Boston: Greenwood Press.

Hoge, James. 1987. Literary Reviewing. Charlottesville: University Virginia of Press.

Sova, Dawn, and Harry Teitelbaum. 2002. How to Write Book Reports , 4th ed. Lawrenceville, NY: Thomson/Arco.

Walford, A.J. 1986. Reviews and Reviewing: A Guide. Phoenix: Oryx Press.

You may reproduce it for non-commercial use if you use the entire handout and attribute the source: The Writing Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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Methodology

  • How to Write a Literature Review | Guide, Examples, & Templates

How to Write a Literature Review | Guide, Examples, & Templates

Published on January 2, 2023 by Shona McCombes . Revised on September 11, 2023.

What is a literature review? A literature review is a survey of scholarly sources on a specific topic. It provides an overview of current knowledge, allowing you to identify relevant theories, methods, and gaps in the existing research that you can later apply to your paper, thesis, or dissertation topic .

There are five key steps to writing a literature review:

  • Search for relevant literature
  • Evaluate sources
  • Identify themes, debates, and gaps
  • Outline the structure
  • Write your literature review

A good literature review doesn’t just summarize sources—it analyzes, synthesizes , and critically evaluates to give a clear picture of the state of knowledge on the subject.

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Table of contents

What is the purpose of a literature review, examples of literature reviews, step 1 – search for relevant literature, step 2 – evaluate and select sources, step 3 – identify themes, debates, and gaps, step 4 – outline your literature review’s structure, step 5 – write your literature review, free lecture slides, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions, introduction.

  • Quick Run-through
  • Step 1 & 2

When you write a thesis , dissertation , or research paper , you will likely have to conduct a literature review to situate your research within existing knowledge. The literature review gives you a chance to:

  • Demonstrate your familiarity with the topic and its scholarly context
  • Develop a theoretical framework and methodology for your research
  • Position your work in relation to other researchers and theorists
  • Show how your research addresses a gap or contributes to a debate
  • Evaluate the current state of research and demonstrate your knowledge of the scholarly debates around your topic.

Writing literature reviews is a particularly important skill if you want to apply for graduate school or pursue a career in research. We’ve written a step-by-step guide that you can follow below.

Literature review guide

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Writing literature reviews can be quite challenging! A good starting point could be to look at some examples, depending on what kind of literature review you’d like to write.

  • Example literature review #1: “Why Do People Migrate? A Review of the Theoretical Literature” ( Theoretical literature review about the development of economic migration theory from the 1950s to today.)
  • Example literature review #2: “Literature review as a research methodology: An overview and guidelines” ( Methodological literature review about interdisciplinary knowledge acquisition and production.)
  • Example literature review #3: “The Use of Technology in English Language Learning: A Literature Review” ( Thematic literature review about the effects of technology on language acquisition.)
  • Example literature review #4: “Learners’ Listening Comprehension Difficulties in English Language Learning: A Literature Review” ( Chronological literature review about how the concept of listening skills has changed over time.)

You can also check out our templates with literature review examples and sample outlines at the links below.

Download Word doc Download Google doc

Before you begin searching for literature, you need a clearly defined topic .

If you are writing the literature review section of a dissertation or research paper, you will search for literature related to your research problem and questions .

Make a list of keywords

Start by creating a list of keywords related to your research question. Include each of the key concepts or variables you’re interested in, and list any synonyms and related terms. You can add to this list as you discover new keywords in the process of your literature search.

  • Social media, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, TikTok
  • Body image, self-perception, self-esteem, mental health
  • Generation Z, teenagers, adolescents, youth

Search for relevant sources

Use your keywords to begin searching for sources. Some useful databases to search for journals and articles include:

  • Your university’s library catalogue
  • Google Scholar
  • Project Muse (humanities and social sciences)
  • Medline (life sciences and biomedicine)
  • EconLit (economics)
  • Inspec (physics, engineering and computer science)

You can also use boolean operators to help narrow down your search.

Make sure to read the abstract to find out whether an article is relevant to your question. When you find a useful book or article, you can check the bibliography to find other relevant sources.

You likely won’t be able to read absolutely everything that has been written on your topic, so it will be necessary to evaluate which sources are most relevant to your research question.

For each publication, ask yourself:

  • What question or problem is the author addressing?
  • What are the key concepts and how are they defined?
  • What are the key theories, models, and methods?
  • Does the research use established frameworks or take an innovative approach?
  • What are the results and conclusions of the study?
  • How does the publication relate to other literature in the field? Does it confirm, add to, or challenge established knowledge?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the research?

Make sure the sources you use are credible , and make sure you read any landmark studies and major theories in your field of research.

You can use our template to summarize and evaluate sources you’re thinking about using. Click on either button below to download.

Take notes and cite your sources

As you read, you should also begin the writing process. Take notes that you can later incorporate into the text of your literature review.

It is important to keep track of your sources with citations to avoid plagiarism . It can be helpful to make an annotated bibliography , where you compile full citation information and write a paragraph of summary and analysis for each source. This helps you remember what you read and saves time later in the process.

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To begin organizing your literature review’s argument and structure, be sure you understand the connections and relationships between the sources you’ve read. Based on your reading and notes, you can look for:

  • Trends and patterns (in theory, method or results): do certain approaches become more or less popular over time?
  • Themes: what questions or concepts recur across the literature?
  • Debates, conflicts and contradictions: where do sources disagree?
  • Pivotal publications: are there any influential theories or studies that changed the direction of the field?
  • Gaps: what is missing from the literature? Are there weaknesses that need to be addressed?

This step will help you work out the structure of your literature review and (if applicable) show how your own research will contribute to existing knowledge.

  • Most research has focused on young women.
  • There is an increasing interest in the visual aspects of social media.
  • But there is still a lack of robust research on highly visual platforms like Instagram and Snapchat—this is a gap that you could address in your own research.

There are various approaches to organizing the body of a literature review. Depending on the length of your literature review, you can combine several of these strategies (for example, your overall structure might be thematic, but each theme is discussed chronologically).

Chronological

The simplest approach is to trace the development of the topic over time. However, if you choose this strategy, be careful to avoid simply listing and summarizing sources in order.

Try to analyze patterns, turning points and key debates that have shaped the direction of the field. Give your interpretation of how and why certain developments occurred.

If you have found some recurring central themes, you can organize your literature review into subsections that address different aspects of the topic.

For example, if you are reviewing literature about inequalities in migrant health outcomes, key themes might include healthcare policy, language barriers, cultural attitudes, legal status, and economic access.

Methodological

If you draw your sources from different disciplines or fields that use a variety of research methods , you might want to compare the results and conclusions that emerge from different approaches. For example:

  • Look at what results have emerged in qualitative versus quantitative research
  • Discuss how the topic has been approached by empirical versus theoretical scholarship
  • Divide the literature into sociological, historical, and cultural sources

Theoretical

A literature review is often the foundation for a theoretical framework . You can use it to discuss various theories, models, and definitions of key concepts.

You might argue for the relevance of a specific theoretical approach, or combine various theoretical concepts to create a framework for your research.

Like any other academic text , your literature review should have an introduction , a main body, and a conclusion . What you include in each depends on the objective of your literature review.

The introduction should clearly establish the focus and purpose of the literature review.

Depending on the length of your literature review, you might want to divide the body into subsections. You can use a subheading for each theme, time period, or methodological approach.

As you write, you can follow these tips:

  • Summarize and synthesize: give an overview of the main points of each source and combine them into a coherent whole
  • Analyze and interpret: don’t just paraphrase other researchers — add your own interpretations where possible, discussing the significance of findings in relation to the literature as a whole
  • Critically evaluate: mention the strengths and weaknesses of your sources
  • Write in well-structured paragraphs: use transition words and topic sentences to draw connections, comparisons and contrasts

In the conclusion, you should summarize the key findings you have taken from the literature and emphasize their significance.

When you’ve finished writing and revising your literature review, don’t forget to proofread thoroughly before submitting. Not a language expert? Check out Scribbr’s professional proofreading services !

This article has been adapted into lecture slides that you can use to teach your students about writing a literature review.

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If you want to know more about the research process , methodology , research bias , or statistics , make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples.

  • Sampling methods
  • Simple random sampling
  • Stratified sampling
  • Cluster sampling
  • Likert scales
  • Reproducibility

 Statistics

  • Null hypothesis
  • Statistical power
  • Probability distribution
  • Effect size
  • Poisson distribution

Research bias

  • Optimism bias
  • Cognitive bias
  • Implicit bias
  • Hawthorne effect
  • Anchoring bias
  • Explicit bias

A literature review is a survey of scholarly sources (such as books, journal articles, and theses) related to a specific topic or research question .

It is often written as part of a thesis, dissertation , or research paper , in order to situate your work in relation to existing knowledge.

There are several reasons to conduct a literature review at the beginning of a research project:

  • To familiarize yourself with the current state of knowledge on your topic
  • To ensure that you’re not just repeating what others have already done
  • To identify gaps in knowledge and unresolved problems that your research can address
  • To develop your theoretical framework and methodology
  • To provide an overview of the key findings and debates on the topic

Writing the literature review shows your reader how your work relates to existing research and what new insights it will contribute.

The literature review usually comes near the beginning of your thesis or dissertation . After the introduction , it grounds your research in a scholarly field and leads directly to your theoretical framework or methodology .

A literature review is a survey of credible sources on a topic, often used in dissertations , theses, and research papers . Literature reviews give an overview of knowledge on a subject, helping you identify relevant theories and methods, as well as gaps in existing research. Literature reviews are set up similarly to other  academic texts , with an introduction , a main body, and a conclusion .

An  annotated bibliography is a list of  source references that has a short description (called an annotation ) for each of the sources. It is often assigned as part of the research process for a  paper .  

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How to write a review article?

In the medical sciences, the importance of review articles is rising. When clinicians want to update their knowledge and generate guidelines about a topic, they frequently use reviews as a starting point. The value of a review is associated with what has been done, what has been found and how these findings are presented. Before asking ‘how,’ the question of ‘why’ is more important when starting to write a review. The main and fundamental purpose of writing a review is to create a readable synthesis of the best resources available in the literature for an important research question or a current area of research. Although the idea of writing a review is attractive, it is important to spend time identifying the important questions. Good review methods are critical because they provide an unbiased point of view for the reader regarding the current literature. There is a consensus that a review should be written in a systematic fashion, a notion that is usually followed. In a systematic review with a focused question, the research methods must be clearly described. A ‘methodological filter’ is the best method for identifying the best working style for a research question, and this method reduces the workload when surveying the literature. An essential part of the review process is differentiating good research from bad and leaning on the results of the better studies. The ideal way to synthesize studies is to perform a meta-analysis. In conclusion, when writing a review, it is best to clearly focus on fixed ideas, to use a procedural and critical approach to the literature and to express your findings in an attractive way.

The importance of review articles in health sciences is increasing day by day. Clinicians frequently benefit from review articles to update their knowledge in their field of specialization, and use these articles as a starting point for formulating guidelines. [ 1 , 2 ] The institutions which provide financial support for further investigations resort to these reviews to reveal the need for these researches. [ 3 ] As is the case with all other researches, the value of a review article is related to what is achieved, what is found, and the way of communicating this information. A few studies have evaluated the quality of review articles. Murlow evaluated 50 review articles published in 1985, and 1986, and revealed that none of them had complied with clear-cut scientific criteria. [ 4 ] In 1996 an international group that analyzed articles, demonstrated the aspects of review articles, and meta-analyses that had not complied with scientific criteria, and elaborated QUOROM (QUality Of Reporting Of Meta-analyses) statement which focused on meta-analyses of randomized controlled studies. [ 5 ] Later on this guideline was updated, and named as PRISMA (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses). [ 6 ]

Review articles are divided into 2 categories as narrative, and systematic reviews. Narrative reviews are written in an easily readable format, and allow consideration of the subject matter within a large spectrum. However in a systematic review, a very detailed, and comprehensive literature surveying is performed on the selected topic. [ 7 , 8 ] Since it is a result of a more detailed literature surveying with relatively lesser involvement of author’s bias, systematic reviews are considered as gold standard articles. Systematic reviews can be diivded into qualitative, and quantitative reviews. In both of them detailed literature surveying is performed. However in quantitative reviews, study data are collected, and statistically evaluated (ie. meta-analysis). [ 8 ]

Before inquring for the method of preparation of a review article, it is more logical to investigate the motivation behind writing the review article in question. The fundamental rationale of writing a review article is to make a readable synthesis of the best literature sources on an important research inquiry or a topic. This simple definition of a review article contains the following key elements:

  • The question(s) to be dealt with
  • Methods used to find out, and select the best quality researches so as to respond to these questions.
  • To synthetize available, but quite different researches

For the specification of important questions to be answered, number of literature references to be consulted should be more or less determined. Discussions should be conducted with colleagues in the same area of interest, and time should be reserved for the solution of the problem(s). Though starting to write the review article promptly seems to be very alluring, the time you spend for the determination of important issues won’t be a waste of time. [ 9 ]

The PRISMA statement [ 6 ] elaborated to write a well-designed review articles contains a 27-item checklist ( Table 1 ). It will be reasonable to fulfill the requirements of these items during preparation of a review article or a meta-analysis. Thus preparation of a comprehensible article with a high-quality scientific content can be feasible.

PRISMA statement: A 27-item checklist

Contents and format

Important differences exist between systematic, and non-systematic reviews which especially arise from methodologies used in the description of the literature sources. A non-systematic review means use of articles collected for years with the recommendations of your colleagues, while systematic review is based on struggles to search for, and find the best possible researches which will respond to the questions predetermined at the start of the review.

Though a consensus has been reached about the systematic design of the review articles, studies revealed that most of them had not been written in a systematic format. McAlister et al. analyzed review articles in 6 medical journals, and disclosed that in less than one fourth of the review articles, methods of description, evaluation or synthesis of evidence had been provided, one third of them had focused on a clinical topic, and only half of them had provided quantitative data about the extend of the potential benefits. [ 10 ]

Use of proper methodologies in review articles is important in that readers assume an objective attitude towards updated information. We can confront two problems while we are using data from researches in order to answer certain questions. Firstly, we can be prejudiced during selection of research articles or these articles might be biased. To minimize this risk, methodologies used in our reviews should allow us to define, and use researches with minimal degree of bias. The second problem is that, most of the researches have been performed with small sample sizes. In statistical methods in meta-analyses, available researches are combined to increase the statistical power of the study. The problematic aspect of a non-systematic review is that our tendency to give biased responses to the questions, in other words we apt to select the studies with known or favourite results, rather than the best quality investigations among them.

As is the case with many research articles, general format of a systematic review on a single subject includes sections of Introduction, Methods, Results, and Discussion ( Table 2 ).

Structure of a systematic review

Preparation of the review article

Steps, and targets of constructing a good review article are listed in Table 3 . To write a good review article the items in Table 3 should be implemented step by step. [ 11 – 13 ]

Steps of a systematic review

The research question

It might be helpful to divide the research question into components. The most prevalently used format for questions related to the treatment is PICO (P - Patient, Problem or Population; I-Intervention; C-appropriate Comparisons, and O-Outcome measures) procedure. For example In female patients (P) with stress urinary incontinence, comparisons (C) between transobturator, and retropubic midurethral tension-free band surgery (I) as for patients’ satisfaction (O).

Finding Studies

In a systematic review on a focused question, methods of investigation used should be clearly specified.

Ideally, research methods, investigated databases, and key words should be described in the final report. Different databases are used dependent on the topic analyzed. In most of the clinical topics, Medline should be surveyed. However searching through Embase and CINAHL can be also appropriate.

While determining appropriate terms for surveying, PICO elements of the issue to be sought may guide the process. Since in general we are interested in more than one outcome, P, and I can be key elements. In this case we should think about synonyms of P, and I elements, and combine them with a conjunction AND.

One method which might alleviate the workload of surveying process is “methodological filter” which aims to find the best investigation method for each research question. A good example of this method can be found in PubMed interface of Medline. The Clinical Queries tool offers empirically developed filters for five different inquiries as guidelines for etiology, diagnosis, treatment, prognosis or clinical prediction.

Evaluation of the Quality of the Study

As an indispensable component of the review process is to discriminate good, and bad quality researches from each other, and the outcomes should be based on better qualified researches, as far as possible. To achieve this goal you should know the best possible evidence for each type of question The first component of the quality is its general planning/design of the study. General planning/design of a cohort study, a case series or normal study demonstrates variations.

A hierarchy of evidence for different research questions is presented in Table 4 . However this hierarchy is only a first step. After you find good quality research articles, you won’t need to read all the rest of other articles which saves you tons of time. [ 14 ]

Determination of levels of evidence based on the type of the research question

Formulating a Synthesis

Rarely all researches arrive at the same conclusion. In this case a solution should be found. However it is risky to make a decision based on the votes of absolute majority. Indeed, a well-performed large scale study, and a weakly designed one are weighed on the same scale. Therefore, ideally a meta-analysis should be performed to solve apparent differences. Ideally, first of all, one should be focused on the largest, and higher quality study, then other studies should be compared with this basic study.

Conclusions

In conclusion, during writing process of a review article, the procedures to be achieved can be indicated as follows: 1) Get rid of fixed ideas, and obsessions from your head, and view the subject from a large perspective. 2) Research articles in the literature should be approached with a methodological, and critical attitude and 3) finally data should be explained in an attractive way.

a review title

How to Write an Article Review: Tips and Examples

a review title

Did you know that article reviews are not just academic exercises but also a valuable skill in today's information age? In a world inundated with content, being able to dissect and evaluate articles critically can help you separate the wheat from the chaff. Whether you're a student aiming to excel in your coursework or a professional looking to stay well-informed, mastering the art of writing article reviews is an invaluable skill.

Short Description

In this article, our research paper writing service experts will start by unraveling the concept of article reviews and discussing the various types. You'll also gain insights into the art of formatting your review effectively. To ensure you're well-prepared, we'll take you through the pre-writing process, offering tips on setting the stage for your review. But it doesn't stop there. You'll find a practical example of an article review to help you grasp the concepts in action. To complete your journey, we'll guide you through the post-writing process, equipping you with essential proofreading techniques to ensure your work shines with clarity and precision!

What Is an Article Review: Grasping the Concept 

A review article is a type of professional paper writing that demands a high level of in-depth analysis and a well-structured presentation of arguments. It is a critical, constructive evaluation of literature in a particular field through summary, classification, analysis, and comparison.

If you write a scientific review, you have to use database searches to portray the research. Your primary goal is to summarize everything and present a clear understanding of the topic you've been working on.

Writing Involves:

  • Summarization, classification, analysis, critiques, and comparison.
  • The analysis, evaluation, and comparison require the use of theories, ideas, and research relevant to the subject area of the article.
  • It is also worth nothing if a review does not introduce new information, but instead presents a response to another writer's work.
  • Check out other samples to gain a better understanding of how to review the article.

Types of Review

When it comes to article reviews, there's more than one way to approach the task. Understanding the various types of reviews is like having a versatile toolkit at your disposal. In this section, we'll walk you through the different dimensions of review types, each offering a unique perspective and purpose. Whether you're dissecting a scholarly article, critiquing a piece of literature, or evaluating a product, you'll discover the diverse landscape of article reviews and how to navigate it effectively.

types of article review

Journal Article Review

Just like other types of reviews, a journal article review assesses the merits and shortcomings of a published work. To illustrate, consider a review of an academic paper on climate change, where the writer meticulously analyzes and interprets the article's significance within the context of environmental science.

Research Article Review

Distinguished by its focus on research methodologies, a research article review scrutinizes the techniques used in a study and evaluates them in light of the subsequent analysis and critique. For instance, when reviewing a research article on the effects of a new drug, the reviewer would delve into the methods employed to gather data and assess their reliability.

Science Article Review

In the realm of scientific literature, a science article review encompasses a wide array of subjects. Scientific publications often provide extensive background information, which can be instrumental in conducting a comprehensive analysis. For example, when reviewing an article about the latest breakthroughs in genetics, the reviewer may draw upon the background knowledge provided to facilitate a more in-depth evaluation of the publication.

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Formatting an Article Review

The format of the article should always adhere to the citation style required by your professor. If you're not sure, seek clarification on the preferred format and ask him to clarify several other pointers to complete the formatting of an article review adequately.

How Many Publications Should You Review?

  • In what format should you cite your articles (MLA, APA, ASA, Chicago, etc.)?
  • What length should your review be?
  • Should you include a summary, critique, or personal opinion in your assignment?
  • Do you need to call attention to a theme or central idea within the articles?
  • Does your instructor require background information?

When you know the answers to these questions, you may start writing your assignment. Below are examples of MLA and APA formats, as those are the two most common citation styles.

Using the APA Format

Articles appear most commonly in academic journals, newspapers, and websites. If you write an article review in the APA format, you will need to write bibliographical entries for the sources you use:

  • Web : Author [last name], A.A [first and middle initial]. (Year, Month, Date of Publication). Title. Retrieved from {link}
  • Journal : Author [last name], A.A [first and middle initial]. (Publication Year). Publication Title. Periodical Title, Volume(Issue), pp.-pp.
  • Newspaper : Author [last name], A.A [first and middle initial]. (Year, Month, Date of Publication). Publication Title. Magazine Title, pp. xx-xx.

Using MLA Format

  • Web : Last, First Middle Initial. “Publication Title.” Website Title. Website Publisher, Date Month Year Published. Web. Date Month Year Accessed.
  • Newspaper : Last, First M. “Publication Title.” Newspaper Title [City] Date, Month, Year Published: Page(s). Print.
  • Journal : Last, First M. “Publication Title.” Journal Title Series Volume. Issue (Year Published): Page(s). Database Name. Web. Date Month Year Accessed.

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The Pre-Writing Process

Facing this task for the first time can really get confusing and can leave you unsure of where to begin. To create a top-notch article review, start with a few preparatory steps. Here are the two main stages from our dissertation services to get you started:

Step 1: Define the right organization for your review. Knowing the future setup of your paper will help you define how you should read the article. Here are the steps to follow:

  • Summarize the article — seek out the main points, ideas, claims, and general information presented in the article.
  • Define the positive points — identify the strong aspects, ideas, and insightful observations the author has made.
  • Find the gaps —- determine whether or not the author has any contradictions, gaps, or inconsistencies in the article and evaluate whether or not he or she used a sufficient amount of arguments and information to support his or her ideas.
  • Identify unanswered questions — finally, identify if there are any questions left unanswered after reading the piece.

Step 2: Move on and review the article. Here is a small and simple guide to help you do it right:

  • Start off by looking at and assessing the title of the piece, its abstract, introductory part, headings and subheadings, opening sentences in its paragraphs, and its conclusion.
  • First, read only the beginning and the ending of the piece (introduction and conclusion). These are the parts where authors include all of their key arguments and points. Therefore, if you start with reading these parts, it will give you a good sense of the author's main points.
  • Finally, read the article fully.

These three steps make up most of the prewriting process. After you are done with them, you can move on to writing your own review—and we are going to guide you through the writing process as well.

Outline and Template

As you progress with reading your article, organize your thoughts into coherent sections in an outline. As you read, jot down important facts, contributions, or contradictions. Identify the shortcomings and strengths of your publication. Begin to map your outline accordingly.

If your professor does not want a summary section or a personal critique section, then you must alleviate those parts from your writing. Much like other assignments, an article review must contain an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. Thus, you might consider dividing your outline according to these sections as well as subheadings within the body. If you find yourself troubled with the pre-writing and the brainstorming process for this assignment, seek out a sample outline.

Your custom essay must contain these constituent parts:

  • Pre-Title Page - Before diving into your review, start with essential details: article type, publication title, and author names with affiliations (position, department, institution, location, and email). Include corresponding author info if needed.
  • Running Head - In APA format, use a concise title (under 40 characters) to ensure consistent formatting.
  • Summary Page - Optional but useful. Summarize the article in 800 words, covering background, purpose, results, and methodology, avoiding verbatim text or references.
  • Title Page - Include the full title, a 250-word abstract, and 4-6 keywords for discoverability.
  • Introduction - Set the stage with an engaging overview of the article.
  • Body - Organize your analysis with headings and subheadings.
  • Works Cited/References - Properly cite all sources used in your review.
  • Optional Suggested Reading Page - If permitted, suggest further readings for in-depth exploration.
  • Tables and Figure Legends (if instructed by the professor) - Include visuals when requested by your professor for clarity.

Example of an Article Review

You might wonder why we've dedicated a section of this article to discuss an article review sample. Not everyone may realize it, but examining multiple well-constructed examples of review articles is a crucial step in the writing process. In the following section, our essay writing service experts will explain why.

Looking through relevant article review examples can be beneficial for you in the following ways:

  • To get you introduced to the key works of experts in your field.
  • To help you identify the key people engaged in a particular field of science.
  • To help you define what significant discoveries and advances were made in your field.
  • To help you unveil the major gaps within the existing knowledge of your field—which contributes to finding fresh solutions.
  • To help you find solid references and arguments for your own review.
  • To help you generate some ideas about any further field of research.
  • To help you gain a better understanding of the area and become an expert in this specific field.
  • To get a clear idea of how to write a good review.

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Steps for Writing an Article Review

Here is a guide with critique paper format on how to write a review paper:

steps for article review

Step 1: Write the Title

First of all, you need to write a title that reflects the main focus of your work. Respectively, the title can be either interrogative, descriptive, or declarative.

Step 2: Cite the Article

Next, create a proper citation for the reviewed article and input it following the title. At this step, the most important thing to keep in mind is the style of citation specified by your instructor in the requirements for the paper. For example, an article citation in the MLA style should look as follows:

Author's last and first name. "The title of the article." Journal's title and issue(publication date): page(s). Print

Abraham John. "The World of Dreams." Virginia Quarterly 60.2(1991): 125-67. Print.

Step 3: Article Identification

After your citation, you need to include the identification of your reviewed article:

  • Title of the article
  • Title of the journal
  • Year of publication

All of this information should be included in the first paragraph of your paper.

The report "Poverty increases school drop-outs" was written by Brian Faith – a Health officer – in 2000.

Step 4: Introduction

Your organization in an assignment like this is of the utmost importance. Before embarking on your writing process, you should outline your assignment or use an article review template to organize your thoughts coherently.

  • If you are wondering how to start an article review, begin with an introduction that mentions the article and your thesis for the review.
  • Follow up with a summary of the main points of the article.
  • Highlight the positive aspects and facts presented in the publication.
  • Critique the publication by identifying gaps, contradictions, disparities in the text, and unanswered questions.

Step 5: Summarize the Article

Make a summary of the article by revisiting what the author has written about. Note any relevant facts and findings from the article. Include the author's conclusions in this section.

Step 6: Critique It

Present the strengths and weaknesses you have found in the publication. Highlight the knowledge that the author has contributed to the field. Also, write about any gaps and/or contradictions you have found in the article. Take a standpoint of either supporting or not supporting the author's assertions, but back up your arguments with facts and relevant theories that are pertinent to that area of knowledge. Rubrics and templates can also be used to evaluate and grade the person who wrote the article.

Step 7: Craft a Conclusion

In this section, revisit the critical points of your piece, your findings in the article, and your critique. Also, write about the accuracy, validity, and relevance of the results of the article review. Present a way forward for future research in the field of study. Before submitting your article, keep these pointers in mind:

  • As you read the article, highlight the key points. This will help you pinpoint the article's main argument and the evidence that they used to support that argument.
  • While you write your review, use evidence from your sources to make a point. This is best done using direct quotations.
  • Select quotes and supporting evidence adequately and use direct quotations sparingly. Take time to analyze the article adequately.
  • Every time you reference a publication or use a direct quotation, use a parenthetical citation to avoid accidentally plagiarizing your article.
  • Re-read your piece a day after you finish writing it. This will help you to spot grammar mistakes and to notice any flaws in your organization.
  • Use a spell-checker and get a second opinion on your paper.

The Post-Writing Process: Proofread Your Work

Finally, when all of the parts of your article review are set and ready, you have one last thing to take care of — proofreading. Although students often neglect this step, proofreading is a vital part of the writing process and will help you polish your paper to ensure that there are no mistakes or inconsistencies.

To proofread your paper properly, start by reading it fully and checking the following points:

  • Punctuation
  • Other mistakes

Afterward, take a moment to check for any unnecessary information in your paper and, if found, consider removing it to streamline your content. Finally, double-check that you've covered at least 3-4 key points in your discussion.

And remember, if you ever need help with proofreading, rewriting your essay, or even want to buy essay , our friendly team is always here to assist you.

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How to write a book review in 3 steps.

How to Write a Book Review in 3 Steps

If the idea of reading for free — or even getting paid to read — sounds like a dream come true, remember that it isn’t a pipe dream. There are many places aspiring book reviewers can read books for free, such as Reedsy Discovery — a new platform for reviewing indie books. Of course, if you’re giving serious thought to becoming a book reviewer, your first step should be learning how to write a book review. To that end, this post covers all the basics of literary criticism. Let’s get started!

The three main steps of writing a book review are simple:

  • Provide a summary: What is story about? Who are the main characters and what is the main conflict? 
  • Present your evaluation: What did you think of the book? What elements worked well, and which ones didn’t? 
  • Give your recommendation: Would you recommend this book to others? If so, what kinds of readers will enjoy it?

You can also download our free book review templates and use it as a guide! Otherwise, let’s take a closer look at each element.

Pro-tip : But wait! How are you sure if you should become a book reviewer in the first place? If you're on the fence, or curious about your match with a book reviewing career, take our quick quiz:

Should you become a book reviewer?

Find out the answer. Takes 30 seconds!

How to write a review of a book

Step 1. provide a summary.

Have you ever watched a movie only to realize that all the good bits were already in the trailer? Well, you don’t want the review to do that. What you do want the summary to do is reveal the genre, theme, main conflict, and main characters in the story — without giving away spoilers or revealing how the story ends.

A good rule of thumb is not to mention anything that happens beyond the midpoint. Set the stage and give readers a sense of the book without explaining how the central issue is resolved.

Emily W. Thompson's review of The Crossing :

In [Michael] Doane’s debut novel, a young man embarks on a journey of self-discovery with surprising results.
An unnamed protagonist (The Narrator) is dealing with heartbreak. His love, determined to see the world, sets out for Portland, Oregon. But he’s a small-town boy who hasn’t traveled much. So, the Narrator mourns her loss and hides from life, throwing himself into rehabbing an old motorcycle. Until one day, he takes a leap; he packs his bike and a few belongings and heads out to find the Girl. Read more...

Here are a few more reviews with well-written summaries for you to check out. The summary tend to be the longest part of the book review, so we won’t turn this post into a novel itself by pasting them all here: Le Cirque Navire reviewed by Anna Brill, The Heart of Stone reviewed by Kevin R. Dickinson, Fitting Out: The Friendship Experiment reviewed by Lianna Albrizio.

Non-fiction summary tip: The primary goal of a non-fiction summary is to provide context: what problems or issues has the book spotted, and how does it go about addressing them? Be sure to mention the authors of the title and what experience or expertise they bring to the title. Check Stefan Kløvning’s review of Creativity Cycling for an example of a summary that establishes the framework of the book within the context of its field.

Step 2. Present your evaluation

While you should absolutely weave your own personal take of a book into the review, your evaluation shouldn’t only be based on your subjective opinion. Along with presenting how you reacted to the story and how it affected you, you should also try to objectively critique the stronger and weaker elements of the story, and provide examples from the text to back up your points.

To help you write your evaluation, you should record your reactions and thoughts as you work your way through a novel you’re planning on reviewing. Here are some aspects of the book to keep in mind as you do.

Your evaluation might focus heartily on the book’s prose:

Donald Barker's review of Mercenary : 

Such are the bones of the story. But, of course, it is the manner in which Mr Gaughran puts the bones back together and fills them with life that makes “Mercenary” such a great read. The author’s style seems plain; it seems straightforward and even simple. But an attempt at imitation or emulation quickly proves that simple it is not. He employs short, punchy sentences that generate excellent dialogue dripping with irony, deadpan humour and wit. This, mixed with good descriptive prose, draws the characters – and what characters they are – along with the tumultuous events in which they participated amidst the stinking, steaming heat of the South American jungle, out from the past to the present; alive, scheming, drinking, womanising and fighting, onto the written page.

You can give readers a sense of the book by drawing comparisons to other well-known titles or authors:

Laura Hartman's review of The Mystery of Ruby's Mistletoe :

Reading Ms. Donovan’s book is reminiscent to one of my favorite authors, Dame Agatha Christie. Setting up the suspects in a snowbound house, asking them to meet in the drawing room and the cleverly satisfying conclusion was extremely gratifying. I can picture Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot nodding at Ms. Donovan saying “Well done!”

Not everyone’s tastes are the same, and you can always acknowledge this by calling out specific story elements in your evaluation: 

Kevin R. Dickinson's review of The Heart of Stone :

Whether you enjoy Galley’s worldbuilding will depend heavily on preference. Galley delivers information piecemeal, letting the characters, not the author, navigate the reader through Hartlund. A notable example is the magic system, an enigmatic force that lacks the ridge structures of, say, a Brandon Sanderson novel. While the world’s magical workings are explained, you only learn what the characters know and many mysteries remain by the end. Similar choices throughout make the world feel expansive and authentic.

Non-fiction evaluation tip: A book’s topic is only as compelling as its supporting arguments. Your evaluation of a nonfiction book should address that: how clearly and effectively are the points communicated? Turn back to Stefan’s critique for an example of a non-fiction critique that covers key takeaways and readability, without giving away any “big reveals.”

Step 3. Give your recommendation 

At the end of the day, your critique needs to answer this question: is this a book you would (or wouldn’t) recommend to other readers? You might wrap up by comparing it to other books in the same genre, or authors with similar styles, such as: “Fans of so-and-so will enjoy this book.” 

Let’s take a look at a few more tips:

You don’t need to write, “I recommend this book” — you can make it clear by highlighting your favorable opinion:

Following in the footsteps of Jack Kerouac and William Least Heat-Moon, Doane offers a coming of age story about a man finding himself on the backroads of America. Doane’s a gifted writer with fluid prose and insightful observations, using The Narrator’s personal interactions to illuminate the diversity of the United States.
Despite his flaws, it’s a pleasure to accompany The Narrator on his physical and emotional journey. The unexpected ending is a fitting denouement to an epic and memorable road trip.

Add more punch to your rating by mentioning what kind of audience will or won’t enjoy the book:

Charleigh Aleyna Reid's review of The King of FU :

I would recommend this book to anyone who grew up in the 90’s and would like to reminisce about the time, someone who is interested to see what it was like to be a 90’s kid, or perhaps anyone who is looking for a unique, funny story about someone’s life.

Unless you found the title absolutely abhorrent, a good way to balance out a less favorable book review it to share what you did like about the book — before ultimately stating why you wouldn’t recommend the novel:

Nicola O's review of Secrets of the Sea Lord :

Overall, there are plenty of enjoyable elements in this story and fans of Atlantis and mer mythology should give it a try. Despite this, it does not rise above a three-star rating, and while I had some difficulty pinning down why this is, I concluded that it comes from a surprisingly unsophisticated vocabulary. There are a couple of graphic sex scenes, which is absolutely fine in a paranormal romance, but if they were removed, I could easily imagine this as an appealing story for middle-schoolers.

Non-fiction recommendation tip: As with fiction book reviews, share why you did or didn’t enjoy the title. However, in one of the starkest divergences from fiction book reviews it’s more important than ever that you mention your expectations coming into the non-fiction book. For instance, if you’re a cow farmer who’s reading a book on the benefits of becoming a vegetarian, you’re coming in with a large and inherent bias that the book will struggle to alter. So your recommendation should cover your thoughts about the book, while clearly taking account your perspective before you started reading. Let’s look once more at Stefan’s review for an example of a rating that includes an explanation of the reviewer’s own bias.

Bonus tips for writing a book review

Let’s wrap up with a few final tips for writing a compelling review.

  • Remember, this isn’t a book report. If someone wants the summary of a book, they can read the synopsis. People turn to book reviews for a fellow reader’s take on the book. And for that reason...
  • Have an opinion. Even if your opinion is totally middle-of-the-line — you didn’t hate the book but you didn’t love it either — state that clearly, and explain why.
  • Make your stance clear from the outset. Don’t save your opinion just for the evaluation/recommendation. Weave your thoughts about the book into your summary as well, so that readers have an idea of your opinion from the outset.
  • Back up your points. Instead of just saying, “the prose was evocative” — show readers by providing an actual passage that displays this. Same goes for negative points — don’t simply tell readers you found a character unbelievable, reference a certain (non-spoiler) scene that backs this up.
  • Provide the details. Don’t forget to weave the book’s information into the review: is this a debut author? Is this one installment of a series? What types of books has the author written before? What is their background? How many pages does the book have? Who published the book? What is the book’s price?
  • Follow guidelines. Is the review you’re writing for Goodreads? For The New York Times ? The content and tone of your review will vary a good deal from publication to publication.
  • Learn from others. One of the best ways to learn how to write a great review is to read other reviews! To help you out with that, we’ve published a post all about book review examples .

Writing book reviews can be a rewarding experience! As a book-lover yourself, it’s a great opportunity to help guide readers to their next favorite title. If you’re just getting started as a reviewer and could use a couple more tips and nudges in the right direction, check out our comprehensive blog post on how to become a book reviewer . And if you want to find out which review community is the right fit for you, we recommend taking this quick quiz:

Which review community should you join?

Find out which review community is best for your style. Takes 30 seconds!

Finally, if you feel you've nailed the basics of how to write a book review, we recommend you check out Reedsy Discovery , where you can review books for free and are guaranteed people will read them. To register as a book reviewer, simply go here !

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Writing a Literature Review

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A literature review is a document or section of a document that collects key sources on a topic and discusses those sources in conversation with each other (also called synthesis ). The lit review is an important genre in many disciplines, not just literature (i.e., the study of works of literature such as novels and plays). When we say “literature review” or refer to “the literature,” we are talking about the research ( scholarship ) in a given field. You will often see the terms “the research,” “the scholarship,” and “the literature” used mostly interchangeably.

Where, when, and why would I write a lit review?

There are a number of different situations where you might write a literature review, each with slightly different expectations; different disciplines, too, have field-specific expectations for what a literature review is and does. For instance, in the humanities, authors might include more overt argumentation and interpretation of source material in their literature reviews, whereas in the sciences, authors are more likely to report study designs and results in their literature reviews; these differences reflect these disciplines’ purposes and conventions in scholarship. You should always look at examples from your own discipline and talk to professors or mentors in your field to be sure you understand your discipline’s conventions, for literature reviews as well as for any other genre.

A literature review can be a part of a research paper or scholarly article, usually falling after the introduction and before the research methods sections. In these cases, the lit review just needs to cover scholarship that is important to the issue you are writing about; sometimes it will also cover key sources that informed your research methodology.

Lit reviews can also be standalone pieces, either as assignments in a class or as publications. In a class, a lit review may be assigned to help students familiarize themselves with a topic and with scholarship in their field, get an idea of the other researchers working on the topic they’re interested in, find gaps in existing research in order to propose new projects, and/or develop a theoretical framework and methodology for later research. As a publication, a lit review usually is meant to help make other scholars’ lives easier by collecting and summarizing, synthesizing, and analyzing existing research on a topic. This can be especially helpful for students or scholars getting into a new research area, or for directing an entire community of scholars toward questions that have not yet been answered.

What are the parts of a lit review?

Most lit reviews use a basic introduction-body-conclusion structure; if your lit review is part of a larger paper, the introduction and conclusion pieces may be just a few sentences while you focus most of your attention on the body. If your lit review is a standalone piece, the introduction and conclusion take up more space and give you a place to discuss your goals, research methods, and conclusions separately from where you discuss the literature itself.

Introduction:

  • An introductory paragraph that explains what your working topic and thesis is
  • A forecast of key topics or texts that will appear in the review
  • Potentially, a description of how you found sources and how you analyzed them for inclusion and discussion in the review (more often found in published, standalone literature reviews than in lit review sections in an article or research paper)
  • Summarize and synthesize: Give an overview of the main points of each source and combine them into a coherent whole
  • Analyze and interpret: Don’t just paraphrase other researchers – add your own interpretations where possible, discussing the significance of findings in relation to the literature as a whole
  • Critically Evaluate: Mention the strengths and weaknesses of your sources
  • Write in well-structured paragraphs: Use transition words and topic sentence to draw connections, comparisons, and contrasts.

Conclusion:

  • Summarize the key findings you have taken from the literature and emphasize their significance
  • Connect it back to your primary research question

How should I organize my lit review?

Lit reviews can take many different organizational patterns depending on what you are trying to accomplish with the review. Here are some examples:

  • Chronological : The simplest approach is to trace the development of the topic over time, which helps familiarize the audience with the topic (for instance if you are introducing something that is not commonly known in your field). If you choose this strategy, be careful to avoid simply listing and summarizing sources in order. Try to analyze the patterns, turning points, and key debates that have shaped the direction of the field. Give your interpretation of how and why certain developments occurred (as mentioned previously, this may not be appropriate in your discipline — check with a teacher or mentor if you’re unsure).
  • Thematic : If you have found some recurring central themes that you will continue working with throughout your piece, you can organize your literature review into subsections that address different aspects of the topic. For example, if you are reviewing literature about women and religion, key themes can include the role of women in churches and the religious attitude towards women.
  • Qualitative versus quantitative research
  • Empirical versus theoretical scholarship
  • Divide the research by sociological, historical, or cultural sources
  • Theoretical : In many humanities articles, the literature review is the foundation for the theoretical framework. You can use it to discuss various theories, models, and definitions of key concepts. You can argue for the relevance of a specific theoretical approach or combine various theorical concepts to create a framework for your research.

What are some strategies or tips I can use while writing my lit review?

Any lit review is only as good as the research it discusses; make sure your sources are well-chosen and your research is thorough. Don’t be afraid to do more research if you discover a new thread as you’re writing. More info on the research process is available in our "Conducting Research" resources .

As you’re doing your research, create an annotated bibliography ( see our page on the this type of document ). Much of the information used in an annotated bibliography can be used also in a literature review, so you’ll be not only partially drafting your lit review as you research, but also developing your sense of the larger conversation going on among scholars, professionals, and any other stakeholders in your topic.

Usually you will need to synthesize research rather than just summarizing it. This means drawing connections between sources to create a picture of the scholarly conversation on a topic over time. Many student writers struggle to synthesize because they feel they don’t have anything to add to the scholars they are citing; here are some strategies to help you:

  • It often helps to remember that the point of these kinds of syntheses is to show your readers how you understand your research, to help them read the rest of your paper.
  • Writing teachers often say synthesis is like hosting a dinner party: imagine all your sources are together in a room, discussing your topic. What are they saying to each other?
  • Look at the in-text citations in each paragraph. Are you citing just one source for each paragraph? This usually indicates summary only. When you have multiple sources cited in a paragraph, you are more likely to be synthesizing them (not always, but often
  • Read more about synthesis here.

The most interesting literature reviews are often written as arguments (again, as mentioned at the beginning of the page, this is discipline-specific and doesn’t work for all situations). Often, the literature review is where you can establish your research as filling a particular gap or as relevant in a particular way. You have some chance to do this in your introduction in an article, but the literature review section gives a more extended opportunity to establish the conversation in the way you would like your readers to see it. You can choose the intellectual lineage you would like to be part of and whose definitions matter most to your thinking (mostly humanities-specific, but this goes for sciences as well). In addressing these points, you argue for your place in the conversation, which tends to make the lit review more compelling than a simple reporting of other sources.

Article Review

Barbara P

Article Review Writing: A Complete Step-by-Step Guide with Examples

Published on: Feb 17, 2020

Last updated on: Nov 24, 2023

Article Review

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Struggling to write a review that people actually want to read? Feeling lost in the details and wondering how to make your analysis stand out?

You're not alone!

Many writers find it tough to navigate the world of article reviews, not sure where to start or how to make their reviews really grab attention.

No worries! 

In this blog, we're going to guide you through the process of writing an article review that stands out. We'll also share tips, and examples to make this process easier for you.

Let’s get started.

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What is an Article Review?

An article review is a critical evaluation and analysis of a piece of writing, typically an academic or journalistic article. 

It goes beyond summarizing the content; it involves an in-depth examination of the author's ideas, arguments, and methodologies. 

The goal is to provide a well-rounded understanding of the article's strengths, weaknesses, and overall contribution to the field.

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Types of Article Reviews

Article reviews come in various forms, each serving a distinct purpose in the realm of academic or professional discourse. Understanding these types is crucial for tailoring your approach. 

Here are some common types of article reviews:

Journal Article Review

A journal article review involves a thorough evaluation of scholarly articles published in academic journals. 

It requires summarizing the article's key points, methodology, and findings, emphasizing its contributions to the academic field. 

Take a look at the following example to help you understand better.

Example of Journal Article Review

Research Article Review

A research article review focuses on scrutinizing articles with a primary emphasis on research.

This type of review involves evaluating the research design, methodology, results, and their broader implications. 

Discussions on the interpretation of results, limitations, and the article's overall contributions are key. 

Here is a sample for you to get an idea.

Example of Research Article Review

Science Article Review

A science article review specifically addresses articles within scientific disciplines. It includes summarizing scientific concepts, hypotheses, and experimental methods.

The type of review assesses the reliability of the experimental design, and evaluates the author's interpretation of findings. 

Take a look at the following example.

Example of Science Article Review

Critical Review

A critical review involves a balanced critique of a given article. It encompasses providing a comprehensive summary, highlighting key points, and engaging in a critical analysis of strengths and weaknesses. 

To get a clearer idea of a critical review, take a look at this example.

Critical Review Example

Article Review Format

When crafting an article review in either APA or MLA format, it's crucial to adhere to the specific guidelines for citing sources. 

Below are the bibliographical entries for different types of sources in both APA and MLA styles:

How to Write an Article Review? 10 Easy Steps

Writing an effective article review involves a systematic approach. Follow this step-by-step process to ensure a comprehensive and well-structured analysis.

Step 1: Understand the Assignment

Before diving into the review, carefully read and understand the assignment guidelines. 

Pay attention to specific requirements, such as word count, formatting style (APA, MLA), and the aspects your instructor wants you to focus on.

Step 2: Read the Article Thoroughly

Begin by thoroughly reading the article. Take notes on key points, arguments, and evidence presented by the author. 

Understand the author's main thesis and the context in which the article was written.

Step 3: Create a Summary

Summarize the main points of the article. Highlight the author's key arguments and findings. 

While writing the summary ensure that you capture the essential elements of the article to provide context for your analysis.

Step 4: Identify the Author's Thesis

In this step, pinpoint the author's main thesis or central argument. Understand the purpose of the article and how the author supports their position. 

This will serve as a foundation for your critique.

Step 5: Evaluate the Author's Evidence and Methodology

Examine the evidence provided by the author to support their thesis. Assess the reliability and validity of the methodology used. 

Consider the sources, data collection methods, and any potential biases.

Step 6: Analyze the Author's Writing Style

Evaluate the author's writing style and how effectively they communicate their ideas. 

Consider the clarity of the language, the organization of the content, and the overall persuasiveness of the article.

Step 7: Consider the Article's Contribution

Reflect on the article's contribution to its field of study. Analyze how it fits into the existing literature, its significance, and any potential implications for future research or applications.

Step 8: Write the Introduction

Craft an introduction that includes the article's title, author, publication date, and a brief overview. 

State the purpose of your review and your thesis—the main point you'll be analyzing in your review.

Step 9: Develop the Body of the Review

Organize your review by addressing specific aspects such as the author's thesis, methodology, writing style, and the article's contribution. 

Use clear paragraphs to structure your analysis logically.

Step 10: Conclude with a Summary and Evaluation

Summarize your main points and restate your overall assessment of the article. 

Offer insights into its strengths and weaknesses, and conclude with any recommendations for improvement or suggestions for further research.

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Article Review Outline

Creating a well-organized outline is an essential part of writing a coherent and insightful article review.

This outline given below will guide you through the key sections of your review, ensuring that your analysis is comprehensive and logically structured.

Refer to the following template to understand outlining the article review in detail.

Article Review Format Template

Article Review Examples

Examining article review examples can provide valuable insights into the structure, tone, and depth of analysis expected. 

Below are sample article reviews, each illustrating a different approach and focus.

Example of Article Review

Law Article Review

Sample of article review assignment pdf

Tips for Writing an Effective Article Review

Crafting an effective article review involves a combination of critical analysis, clarity, and structure. 

Here are some valuable tips to guide you through the process:

  • Start with a Clear Introduction

Kick off your article review by introducing the article's main points and mentioning the publication date, which you can find on the re-title page. Outline the topics you'll cover in your review.

  • Concise Summary with Unanswered Questions

Provide a short summary of the article, emphasizing its main ideas. Highlight any lingering questions, known as "unanswered questions," that the article may have triggered. Use a basic article review template to help structure your thoughts.

  • Illustrate with Examples

Use examples from the article to illustrate your points. If there are tables or figures in the article, discuss them to make your review more concrete and easily understandable.

  • Organize Clearly with a Summary Section

Keep your review straightforward and well-organized. Begin with the start of the article, express your thoughts on what you liked or didn't like, and conclude with a summary section. This follows a basic plan for clarity.

  • Constructive Criticism

When providing criticism, be constructive. If there are elements you don't understand, frame them as "unanswered questions." This approach shows engagement and curiosity.

  • Smoothly Connect Your Ideas

Ensure your thoughts flow naturally throughout your review. Use simple words and sentences. If you have questions about the article, let them guide your review organically.

  • Revise and Check for Clarity

Before finishing, go through your review. Correct any mistakes and ensure it sounds clear. Check if you followed your plan, used simple words, and incorporated the keywords effectively. This makes your review better and more accessible for others.

In conclusion , writing an effective article review involves a thoughtful balance of summarizing key points, and addressing unanswered questions. 

By following a simple and structured approach, you can create a review that not only analyzes the content but also adds value to the reader's understanding.

Remember to organize your thoughts logically, use clear language, and provide examples from the article to support your points. 

Ready to elevate your article reviewing skills? Explore the valuable resources and expert assistance at MyPerfectWords.com. 

Our team of experienced writers is here to help you with article reviews and other school tasks. 

So why wait? Get our essay writing service today!

Barbara P (Literature, Marketing)

Dr. Barbara is a highly experienced writer and author who holds a Ph.D. degree in public health from an Ivy League school. She has worked in the medical field for many years, conducting extensive research on various health topics. Her writing has been featured in several top-tier publications.

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a review title

How to write a review? | C1 Advanced (CAE)

a review title

The main purpose is to describe and express a personal opinion about something which the essay writer has experienced (e.g. a film, a holiday, a product, a website, etc.) and to give the reader a clear impression of what the item discussed is like.

Check our Writing Guide below – to see how to write a CAE review in detail.

C1 Advanced (CAE) Review: Structure

Fce, cae, cpe, practice, write & improve, c1 advanced (cae) review: writing guide.

We will use the example CAE review topic below:

You see the following announcement on a website, Great Lives:

Reviews wanted Send us a review of a book or film that focuses on somebody who has made an important contribution to society.

Did you learn anything new about the person’s life from the book or film? Did the book or film help you understand why this person made their important contribution?

Write your  review (around 220 – 260  words)

Step 1: Briefly analyse your task…

The first thing is to find underline a description part , where we have to describe something like a film, book, restaurant or anything else. Next , find a discussion part where need to give opinion and or make a recommendation or suggestion.

On top of that, find the  target reader who is always specified so you know exactly who you are writing for and who is going to read your review.

Reviews Wanted Send us a review of a book or film that focuses on somebody who has made an important contribution to society. (to describe)

Did you learn anything new about the person’s life from the book or film? Did the book or film help you understand why this person made their important contribution? (to answer/discuss)

Thanks to this, we have all the elements we need to write a great review below:

You need to describe: B o ok or film that focuses on somebody who has made an important contribution to society

You need to answer/discuss:

  • Why this person made an important contribution?
  • Did you learn anything new about the person’s life?

Who is the target reader: website, Great Lives 

We know now that the target readers are the users of the website, so the writing style can be quite direct and informal (idioms, phrasal verbs).

Now we can start building our structure and writing a review.

Practice Tests Online

Step 2: title.

The review should start with the title, and there are several ways to write it:

  • imagine you’re reviewing a book you can write  [Title] by [Author]
  • if you were reviewing a hotel you could write the [name of the hotel] – a review
  • or you can just write something catchy but it has to point to what you are going to review

Title (book): Green Lantern by Stephen King (by) Title (hotel): Ibiza Hotel in Barcelona – a review (a review) Title (restaurant): Taco Bell: U n forgettable experience (catchy)

we will use this title in our guide : TITLE : Mandela: Striving for Freedom — a review

Step 3: Introduction

a review title

The other function of your introduction is to engage the reader . There are certain tools we can use to achieve that for example, we can ask a rhetorical question.

It is a question that doesn’t really need an answer it is there as a stylistic feature that engages the reader and makes them interested in the topic

Make your introduction at least 2-3 sentences long.

INTRODUCTION: Have you ever been so passionate about something that you would sacrifice your very best years for it? In the film Mandela: Striving for Freedom we get not only a glimpse of Nelson Mandela’s life, but rather dive deep into who he was and how he changed a whole country . This autobiographical film, based on the book, and released in 2013, tells the amazing story of an even more extraordinary man.

                  – rhetorical question

                  – identification of reviewed item

  TIP : Don’t waste your time looking for a real book or a real movie to match your review. Make it up or change the facts to suit the review, it doesn’t have to be real.

Step 4: The body paragraphs (main content) 

a review title

Unlike essays, your paragraphs don’t have to be of the same length (however, should be longer than the introduction or conclusion).

Use idioms , phrasal verbs and colloquial language  –  informal language is appropriate for your target reader – users of the website, Great Lives

See the example below, in which we dedicate one paragraph to one   point…

[Why this person made an important contribution?]

While the whole film captivated me throughout, there was one aspect that truly stood out to me. Nelson Mandela and his second wife Winnie had a one-of-a-kind relationship driving each other to continue and grow the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa even after Mr Mandela was captured and imprisoned. It is a testament to their dedication and partnership and something ‘that a lot of us can learn from.

[Did you learn anything new about the person’s life?]

Despite having a strong and driven partner in his wife, I still used to be astonished by the fact that someone would simply sacrifice themselves and give up a big part of their life to help others, but this biopic made me reconsider. Witnessing segregated society and all the racial abuse the black community had to endure during apartheid, there was no other option for Nelson Mandela than to stand up and fight for equality.

                      – topic-specific vocabulary

                   – engaging/interesting vocabulary

                    – relevant details

Step 5: Conclusion / Recommendations

It will contain your general impression and your verdict/recommendation .

Use this paragraph to make an objective assessment of the reviewed material. You may then recommend or dissuade your readers from seeing/attending it.

CONCLUSION: All in all, Mandela: Striving for Freedom gives some incredible insight into the life of one of the world’s most famous and influential personalities of the 20th century. It would be a shame not to watch it so I highly recommend that you check your favourite streaming service as soon as you can and I promise you won’t regret it.                 – recap, what you like about the film

                 – recommendation

See full review…

Full review.

Mandela: Striving for Freedom — a review

Have you ever been so passionate about something that you would sacrifice your very best years for it? In the film Mandela: Striving for Freedom we get not only a glimpse of Nelson Mandela’s life, but rather dive deep into who he was and how he changed a whole country. This autobiographical film, based on the book, and released in 2013, tells the amazing story of an even more extraordinary man.

All in all, Mandela: Striving for Freedom gives some incredible insight into the life of one of the world’s most famous and influential personalities of the 20th century. It would be a shame not to watch it so I highly recommend that you check your favourite streaming service as soon as you can and I promise you won’t regret it.

engxam logo english exams

Check your (CAE) Review

C1 advanced (cae) review: example reviews, cae review sample 1.

You have seen this announcement on your favourite music website.

Have you ever been to an amazing concert venue?

Write a review of the best music venue in your local area and tell us about what makes it so special. Say who you would recommend it for a why?

The best entries will be published on our website.

Model answer:

The Apollo: The Theatre of Dreams

Never before have you seen such an amazing spectacle as you will see in the Apollo. It´s not only the facilities and personnel that make this venue so great, but also the amazing acoustics of such a large venue.

From the moment you enter the place there is an awe about it. All of the greatest acts of recent times have played here and you can feel the buzz as soon as you enter. The crowd are so close to the stage that they can literally feel the droplets of sweat coming off of the brows of their favourite artists, this creates an amazing connection between the musicians and the audience and I can tell you, the fans go wild!

I´d definitely recommend this venue to anyone, it has a great feel to it and the prices are at the lower end of what you would expect to pay in such a place. They also don’t go over the top on drinks prices, and through it sounds weird, it´s not all that difficult to get to the bathroom which is a plus. So, without a doubt, the next time your favourite group is playing, come on down to the Apollo, oh, and did I mention it is in London? It couldn´t get any better.

Get Your (CAE) Review Checked!

Cae review sample 2.

You see this announcement in an international magazine.

The most UPLIFTING and the biggest DOWNER . It’s sometimes hard to choose a film that fits your mood purely on the basis of the poster or the description on the cover of the DVD. That’s why we want to publish reviews of the most uplifting and the most depressing films our readers have seen, so that others know what to watch and what to avoid. Send in a review which describes the most uplifting film you’ve ever seen and the one you found the biggest downer. Make sure you give reasons for your choices.

Write your  review  in  220-260 words  in an appropriate style.

A tale of two films

If I were to present two of the most contrasting films about overcoming adversity it would be The Blind Side (2009)  and Doctor Zhivago (1965). Whereas the former left me with a huge grin on my face, sadly, the latter left me feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders.

Doctor Zhivago , directed by five-time Oscar winner David Lean, is set in the Bolshevik revolution and follows the title character, who must adapt to the new order while pining for Lara, the beautiful wife of a political campaigner. The director succeeded in creating a film that is thoroughly engaging but full of gritty realism, cruelty and tragic irony. Take the tissues!

The Blind Side , which is based on a true story, is also a bit of a tearjerker, in a completely different way. Starring Sandra Bullock, who won an Academy Award for her portrayal of a rich white mother in Tennessee who takes a homeless black teenager under her roof. Understandably, the gentle giant thinks he isn’t good at anything but his new mother sees his potential to become a football star and part of the family. The plot is based on a true story, making it all the more touching.

I would strongly recommend  The Blind Side . It will appeal to a range of people and is a great choice for a movie night. Although  Doctor Zhivago  is a classic, I think it has more of a niche audience and is best saved for when you want a dose of gloom!

C1 Advanced (CAE) Review: Example topics

Cae example topic 1.

You see the the following announcement on a website, Great Lives:

REVIEWS WANTED Send us a review of a book or a film focusses on somebody who has made an important contribution to society.

Write your review in 220-260 words

CAE Example topic 2

You see this announcement in an international magazine called Cinefilia.

THE MOST UPLIFTING AND THE BIGGEST DOWNER. It’s sometimes hard to choose a film that fits your mood purely on the basis of the poster or the description on the cover of the DVD. That’s why we want to publish reviews of the most uplifting and the most depressing films our readers have seen, so that others know what to watch and what to avoid. Send in a review which describes the most uplifting film you’ve ever seen and the one you found the biggest downer. Make sure you give reasons for your choices.

Write your review in 220-260 words in an appropriate style.

CAE Example topic 3

You see the following announcement in a magazine:

SEND US YOUR REVIEW

Have you read a book or seen a film that has a central character whose life is affected by an event or decision they make early in the story What did you learn about the person’s character? Did the book or flim help you to understand how the person was affected by this event or decision? Send us your review for our next issue

Write your review for the magazine readers. (220-260 words)

C1 Advanced (CAE) Review: Tips

a review title

  • Think about what you are trying to achieve and the structure of your review.
  • You should also start a new paragraph for every item/aspect you are addressing in your review. 
  • Include a final recommendation or evaluation
  • Don’t forget!  The target reader is specified in the question, so the candidate knows not only what register  is appropriate, but also has an idea about the kind of information to include. 

C1 Advanced (CAE) Review: Writing Checklist

a review title

After writing your text, you can check it yourself using the writing checklist below.

How to do that? Simply check your text/email by answering the questions one by one:

  • Have I covered all the key information required by the task?
  • Have I written only information which is relevant to the task?
  • Have I developed the basic points in the task with my own ideas?

Communicative Achievement

  • Have I achieved the main purpose(s) of the text (for example, explaining, persuading, suggesting, apologising, comparing, etc.)?
  • Have I used a suitable mix of fact and opinion?
  • Have I used a suitable style and register (formal or informal) for the task?

Organisation

  • Have I used paragraphs appropriately to organise my ideas?
  • Have I used other organisational features appropriately for the genre of the text (for example, titles, headings, openings, closings, etc.)?
  • Is the connection between my ideas clear and easy for the reader to follow? (For example, have I used appropriate linking words, pronouns, etc. to refer to different things within the text?)
  • Are the ideas balanced appropriately, with suitable attention and space given to each one?
  • Have I used a wide range of vocabulary?
  • Have I avoided repeating the same words and phrases?
  • Have I used a range of simple and more complex grammatical structures?
  • Have I correctly used any common phrases which are relevant to the specific task or topic?
  • Is my use of grammar accurate?
  • Is my spelling accurate?

C1 Advanced (CAE) Review: Grading

Would you pass c1 advanced (cae), c1 advanced (cae) review: useful phrases.

We will finish it with some useful vocabulary mostly used to organize information. Although it is taking a shortcut, if you learn several expressions for each paragraph in each type of text that could be on your exam, you will certainly be able to create a very consistent and well-organized text.

What I liked

What I liked most was ….. The thing I liked most was …. I was pleasantly surprised by …..  ….. would appeal to …..  If you get a chance to ….

What I disliked

What I disliked most was ….. I was disappointed by …… I was disappointed with ….. I was very disappointed by …..  I was very disappointed with ….

Reviews of books:

main character is set in comedy science fiction thriller romance comedy: author written by chapter factual fiction unbelievable bestseller chapter ending

Reviews of films, tv programmes, plays:

lead role star role star star actor star actress starring secondary role He plays a ……. She plays a ……. written by …. is set in ….. based on a true story …. believable true to life not very believable far-fetched comedy romance science fiction ending

Reviews of hotels, restaurants, etc:

location service setting attractive setting disappointing setting owned by run by head chef (restaurant) waiters (restaurant) staff ……. staff at reception …….(hotel hotel facilities …. reasonable prices ….. good value for money ….. excellent value for money ….. expensive a bit expensive overpriced not worth the money poor value for money always fully booked book in advance

The script seemed rather conventional/predictable to me. The plot struck me as completely bizarre/absurd/incomprehensible The characters are appealing and true to life The dancers were quite brilliant/amateurish

Recommendations

I would strongly encourage you not to miss/not to waste your money on… I would definitely recommend seeing/visiting/reading/having a look at …

6 tips for writing a great title for your research article

a review title

Title is the first thing the reader sees from your research article. Based on the title the reader decides to have a look at the article — or not. So a better title will attract more readers and quite possibly increase the impact of your research. If you wonder what makes a good title, and how you can formulate one for your paper as well, then check out our six tips for writing a great research article title.

Goal: catch the attention of the *right* reader

A good title helps the reader quickly recognize whether this paper is relevant for them. The title should give the reader an accurate picture of the article — and motivate the *right* reader to go on and read the article.

Additionally, an ideal title is memorable : researchers are reading many papers, some will be inevitably forgotten. A good title ensures that your paper will stick in your reader’s mind.

Case study: Important paper missed because of its title

Let me tell you an example from my own research, about an important paper that we missed because of its title.

Article entitled Distinct contributions of Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 in action potential initiation and backpropagation has been published in July 2009 in the prestigious journal Nature Neuroscience .

A couple of months later I started to work on a project that later became my PhD thesis. And the above mentioned article turned out to be the most important study on which my whole work was based.

Yet when I started, I didn’t know about the paper. My supervisor and another professor working on similar topics didn’t know about it either.

They had surely seen the title since they were following the journal’s publications. But they didn’t recognize that this might be a relevant paper.

Eventually we learned about the paper from a collaborator from a different institute. Later when I was presenting my work at conferences, I encountered many other researchers who missed this paper, even though it was clearly relevant to them.

So, what’s the issue with this title? Read on my tips on how to write a great title , and learn along the way what is problematic with this title and how we can fix it.

1. Headline the main result, not the main effort

If your paper has a clear main finding that can be summarized in a sentence , put it in the title. Such a title is much more interesting (and informative) than a title describing your approach.

Prof. Kevin Plaxco gives the following examples in his commentary article The art of writing science :

  • Main effort (not optimal): A phylogenetic analysis of humans and chimps
  • Main result (preferred): Phylogenetic evidence indicates an exceptionally close relationship between humans and chimps

Here is another example:

  • Main result missing: Cognitive-behavioural stress management skills and quality of life in stress-related disorders
  • Main result in the title: Cognitive-behavioural stress management skills improve quality of life in stress-related disorders

Concerning our case study example, the title Distinct contributions of Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 in action potential initiation and backpropagation does (kind of) contain the main result, albeit it is not formulated as a full sentence. We’ll see later how we can improve it.

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2. Adapt the level of detail to your target audience

If your article is intended for a broader audience (that is, you want to publish it in a general journal), your title should be more general , so that it is understandable to this broader audience.

On the other hand, if your article is intended for a specialized audience and a specialized journal, you can include more details and jargon in the title.

  • article published in the broad journal Nature: The hippocampus is crucial for forming non-hippocampal long-term memory during sleep
  • article on a similar topic published in the specialized journal Neurobiology of Learning and Memory: Sleep enhances memory consolidation in the hippocampus-dependent object-place recognition task in rats

However, be careful with short and general titles . Such titles are typical for review articles , because they suggest a broad scope of the article. So your readers might mistaken your original research article for a review article.

For example, the title Axon Initial Segment–Associated Microglia sounds like it’s a review, but it is an original research article. Such a title is misleading for the readers, so it’s better to avoid it.

a review title

Not every neuroscientist knows what is “Na V 1.6″ and “Na V 1.2″. My supervisor didn’t know either — and it turns out that this was one of the reasons why he and the other professor missed this article. “Na V 1.6″ and “Na V 1.2″ are sodium channels — and every neuroscientist knows what are those. So the keyword “sodium channels” should definitely be included in an article title published in such a general journal as Nature Neuroscience .

3. Avoid “fluff” at the beginning of the title

Beginning of the title is especially salient , especially visible to the reader. And often this is your only chance to convince your potential reader that this paper is relevant to them.

So it’s a mistake to start the title with “fluff”, that is, a phrase that doesn’t carry much content and can be safely omitted. Instead, begin your title with an important keyword .

For example:

  • Aspects of ​immune dysfunction in end-stage renal disease
  • Revisiting the role of xanthophylls in nonphotochemical quenching

Our case-study title Distinct contributions of Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 in action potential initiation and backpropagation does not start with a meaningless phrase that can be simply deleted. However, it also doesn’t start with an important keyword. Let’s see in the next point what would be a better beginning of the title.

4. Use the Context – Emphasis structure

A great title follows the optimal sentence structure : The beginning of the title acts as context for the rest of the title while the end of the title is naturally emphasized (if the reader gets this far).

So a good strategy is to include at the beginning of the title a keyword that will be recognized by all of your target readers and at the end of the title a keyword that is specific to your paper and its contribution.

However, what is a general keyword and what is a specific contribution might depend on your audience .

For example, the title Selective Adsorption to Particular Crystal Faces of ZnO suggests that this article primarily targets researchers interested in adsorption processes: “selective adsorption” is the general process, which is examined in this paper for the particular case of ZnO. However, if the paper targets researchers working on ZnO (zinc oxide), then it would be better to mention “ZnO” at beginning of the title.

Now let’s consider our case study : Distinct contributions of Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 in action potential initiation and backpropagation .

a review title

Then, what is a specific keyword related to the contribution of this paper? I would say it could be “Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 sodium channels”: although there are some previous studies investigating these two channel types, this paper put all the puzzle pieces together and provided a coherent picture about the interplay of these two channel types in — you guessed it — action potential initiation and backpropagation.

So, let’s improve this title by putting “Action potential initiation and backpropagation” at the beginning and “Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 sodium channels” at the end. Then we can rearrange the rest such that it makes sense — and reveals the main message of the paper:

Action potential initiation and backpropagation is differentially regulated by Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 sodium channels

A much better title, don’t you think?

5. “Context: Details” structure also works

But what to do with papers that have no single take-home message that can be summarized in a sentence?

For explorative papers that cover several problems or aspects of a topic, the “Context: Details” structure is often suitable. Here, you start with the general contextual keyword(s) that grab the attention of the reader, and then supplement relevant details after the colon.

  • UCB revisited: Improved regret bounds for the stochastic multi-armed bandit problem
  • Single Cell Assay for Molecular Diagnostics and Medicine: Monitoring Intracellular Concentrations of Macromolecules by Two-photon Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging

Here are some examples that don’t work very well:

  • Noise statistics identification for Kalman filtering of the electron radiation belt observations: 2. Filtration and smoothing
  • A better oscillation detection method robustly extracts EEG rhythms across brain state changes: The human alpha rhythm as a test case

In these cases, the first part before the colon is too long, it provides much more information than just the context, and therefore the whole title becomes harder to understand and remember.

So for an effective “Context: Details” type of title, make sure that the first part before the colon is short and memorable . Then the second part after the colon can be longer and detailed, and the title will still create a clear image in reader’s mind.

6. Title as a question or catchy title? It depends…

Now you might ask yourself: can’t we write more interesting titles than those that accurately reflect the content of the paper? These can be pretty boring… What about titles formulated as questions? And “catchy” titles?

Well, the general rule is to follow the conventions of your field . If some of the research articles you are reading have catchy titles, then it’s most probably OK for you to do this as well.

For example, questions and catchy titles are quite common in research articles from psychology:

  • How often is p rep close to the true replication probability?
  • Must interesting things be pleasant? A test of competing appraisal structures.

On the other hand, I have rarely seen a question as a title in a research article from neuroscience.

However, in most fields catchy and even funny titles are appreciated in commentary and opinion articles . For example, the “news & views” commentary article introducing our case-study paper Distinct contributions of Na V 1.6 and Na V 1.2 in action potential initiation and backpropagation is entitled Who let the spikes out?

Also the titles of review articles might be less formal. Which brings us to the next point…

Titles of review articles

Titles of review articles tend to be more general and broad than titles of original research articles. This, of course, reflects the broader scope and content of review articles. For example:

  • Carbohydrate inhibitors of cholera toxin
  • Neural circuits underlying thirst and fluid homeostasis

These titles don’t consist of a full sentence — because there is rarely a main take-home message in a review article. However, what is helpful here is to follow the Context-Emphasis structure introduced in point 4.

Titles of review articles often include the word “review” in the title, for example:

  • Gap junctions in developing neocortex: a review
  • A systematic review of COVID-19 epidemiology based on current evidence

And as we said in the previous point, titles of review articles may be less formal and more catchy even in fields where such titles are not used for original research articles:

  • Spooky sodium balance
  • Remembering the past to imagine the future: the prospective brain

How to find the perfect title for your article

Now you have learned all the rules for good titles, but one question remains: How to proceed? How to come up with a great title for your article?

a review title

Then I recommend the following procedure :

  • First, generate 10 possible titles . These 10 titles don’t have to be unique: some of them might only differ in one or two words or in the word order.
  • Next, select the best title . You can do this together with your co-authors. Or each co-author picks one or two favorites and then you discuss and select the final title together.

With this procedure it’s much easier to find the most suitable title for your paper than if you would create just one title and then try to improve it.

So that was quite some theory about how to write a great title. Now if you want to practice this new knowledge, here is a little exercise for you.

What is good and what is not optimal about these titles? How would you improve them?

  • Analysis of processes leading to localized electron enhancements in the outer radiation belt
  • Wild-type and cancer-related p53 proteins are preferentially degraded by MDM2 as dimers rather than tetramers
  • A New Murine Model to Define the Critical Pathologic and Therapeutic Mediators of Polymyositis

If you are currently writing a manuscript and would like to get feedback and suggestions for your title: please, feel free to post it as a comment . Alternatively, you can also ask for feedback in our Facebook group Academic writing — peer feedback .

Do you need to revise & polish your manuscript or thesis but don’t know where to begin? Is your text a mess and you don't know how to improve it?

Click here for an efficient step-by-step revision of your scientific texts. You will be guided through each step with concrete tips for execution.

3 thoughts on “ 6 tips for writing a great title for your research article ”

Dear Martina,

Thank you very much for another portion of valuable information! It’s really helpful!

I’d be very greatful if you could comment on a title for a review article I’m writting now. Which of the two title you think is better:

Novel approaches to epigenetic therapies Novel approaches to epigenetic therapies: from drug combinations to epigenetic editing

Thank you for your suggestion, Kind regards, Aleksandra

Dear Aleksandra,

I am happy to hear that you found the article helpful!

Concerning your question: I prefer the second, longer title. It gives the reader a much better idea of what your review article is about. “Novel approaches to epigenetic therapies” alone is rather unspecific…

All the best, Martina

That was my choice as well! Thank you for ensuring me about it!

All the best, Aleksandra

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How to Write a Book Review: A Comprehensive Tutorial With Examples

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You don’t need to be a literary expert to craft captivating book reviews. With one in every three readers selecting books based on insightful reviews, your opinions can guide fellow bibliophiles toward their next literary adventure.

Learning how to write a book review will not only help you excel at your assigned tasks, but you’ll also contribute valuable insights to the book-loving community and turn your passion into a professional pursuit.

In this comprehensive guide,  PaperPerk  will walk you through a few simple steps to master the art of writing book reviews so you can confidently embark on this rewarding journey.

What is a Book Review?

A book review is a critical evaluation of a book, offering insights into its content, quality, and impact. It helps readers make informed decisions about whether to read the book.

Writing a book review as an assignment benefits students in multiple ways. Firstly, it teaches them how to write a book review by developing their analytical skills as they evaluate the content, themes, and writing style .

Secondly, it enhances their ability to express opinions and provide constructive criticism. Additionally, book review assignments expose students to various publications and genres, broadening their knowledge.

Furthermore, these tasks foster essential skills for academic success, like critical thinking and the ability to synthesize information. By now, we’re sure you want to learn how to write a book review, so let’s look at the book review template first.

Table of Contents

Book Review Template

How to write a book review- a step by step guide.

Check out these 5 straightforward steps for composing the best book review.

Step 1: Planning Your Book Review – The Art of Getting Started

You’ve decided to take the plunge and share your thoughts on a book that has captivated (or perhaps disappointed) you. Before you start book reviewing, let’s take a step back and plan your approach. Since knowing how to write a book review that’s both informative and engaging is an art in itself.

Choosing Your Literature

First things first, pick the book you want to review. This might seem like a no-brainer, but selecting a book that genuinely interests you will make the review process more enjoyable and your insights more authentic.

Crafting the Master Plan

Next, create an  outline  that covers all the essential points you want to discuss in your review. This will serve as the roadmap for your writing journey.

The Devil is in the Details

As you read, note any information that stands out, whether it overwhelms, underwhelms, or simply intrigues you. Pay attention to:

  • The characters and their development
  • The plot and its intricacies
  • Any themes, symbols, or motifs you find noteworthy

Remember to reserve a body paragraph for each point you want to discuss.

The Key Questions to Ponder

When planning your book review, consider the following questions:

  • What’s the plot (if any)? Understanding the driving force behind the book will help you craft a more effective review.
  • Is the plot interesting? Did the book hold your attention and keep you turning the pages?
  • Are the writing techniques effective? Does the author’s style captivate you, making you want to read (or reread) the text?
  • Are the characters or the information believable? Do the characters/plot/information feel real, and can you relate to them?
  • Would you recommend the book to anyone? Consider if the book is worthy of being recommended, whether to impress someone or to support a point in a literature class.
  • What could improve? Always keep an eye out for areas that could be improved. Providing constructive criticism can enhance the quality of literature.

Step 2 – Crafting the Perfect Introduction to Write a Book Review

In this second step of “how to write a book review,” we’re focusing on the art of creating a powerful opening that will hook your audience and set the stage for your analysis.

Identify Your Book and Author

Begin by mentioning the book you’ve chosen, including its  title  and the author’s name. This informs your readers and establishes the subject of your review.

Ponder the Title

Next, discuss the mental images or emotions the book’s title evokes in your mind . This helps your readers understand your initial feelings and expectations before diving into the book.

Judge the Book by Its Cover (Just a Little)

Take a moment to talk about the book’s cover. Did it intrigue you? Did it hint at what to expect from the story or the author’s writing style? Sharing your thoughts on the cover can offer a unique perspective on how the book presents itself to potential readers.

Present Your Thesis

Now it’s time to introduce your thesis. This statement should be a concise and insightful summary of your opinion of the book. For example:

“Normal People” by Sally Rooney is a captivating portrayal of the complexities of human relationships, exploring themes of love, class, and self-discovery with exceptional depth and authenticity.

Ensure that your thesis is relevant to the points or quotes you plan to discuss throughout your review.

Incorporating these elements into your introduction will create a strong foundation for your book review. Your readers will be eager to learn more about your thoughts and insights on the book, setting the stage for a compelling and thought-provoking analysis.

How to Write a Book Review: Step 3 – Building Brilliant Body Paragraphs

You’ve planned your review and written an attention-grabbing introduction. Now it’s time for the main event: crafting the body paragraphs of your book review. In this step of “how to write a book review,” we’ll explore the art of constructing engaging and insightful body paragraphs that will keep your readers hooked.

Summarize Without Spoilers

Begin by summarizing a specific section of the book, not revealing any major plot twists or spoilers. Your goal is to give your readers a taste of the story without ruining surprises.

Support Your Viewpoint with Quotes

Next, choose three quotes from the book that support your viewpoint or opinion. These quotes should be relevant to the section you’re summarizing and help illustrate your thoughts on the book.

Analyze the Quotes

Write a summary of each quote in your own words, explaining how it made you feel or what it led you to think about the book or the author’s writing. This analysis should provide insight into your perspective and demonstrate your understanding of the text.

Structure Your Body Paragraphs

Dedicate one body paragraph to each quote, ensuring your writing is well-connected, coherent, and easy to understand.

For example:

  • In  Jane Eyre , Charlotte Brontë writes, “I am no bird; and no net ensnares me.” This powerful statement highlights Jane’s fierce independence and refusal to be trapped by societal expectations.
  • In  Normal People , Sally Rooney explores the complexities of love and friendship when she writes, “It was culture as class performance, literature fetishized for its ability to take educated people on false emotional journeys.” This quote reveals the author’s astute observations on the role of culture and class in shaping personal relationships.
  • In  Wuthering Heights , Emily Brontë captures the tumultuous nature of love with the quote, “He’s more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.” This poignant line emphasizes the deep, unbreakable bond between the story’s central characters.

By following these guidelines, you’ll create body paragraphs that are both captivating and insightful, enhancing your book review and providing your readers with a deeper understanding of the literary work. 

How to Write a Book Review: Step 4 – Crafting a Captivating Conclusion

You’ve navigated through planning, introductions, and body paragraphs with finesse. Now it’s time to wrap up your book review with a  conclusion that leaves a lasting impression . In this final step of “how to write a book review,” we’ll explore the art of writing a memorable and persuasive conclusion.

Summarize Your Analysis

Begin by summarizing the key points you’ve presented in the body paragraphs. This helps to remind your readers of the insights and arguments you’ve shared throughout your review.

Offer Your Final Conclusion

Next, provide a conclusion that reflects your overall feelings about the book. This is your chance to leave a lasting impression and persuade your readers to consider your perspective.

Address the Book’s Appeal

Now, answer the question: Is this book worth reading? Be clear about who would enjoy the book and who might not. Discuss the taste preferences and circumstances that make the book more appealing to some readers than others.

For example:  The Alchemist is a book that can enchant a young teen, but those who are already well-versed in classic literature might find it less engaging.

Be Subtle and Balanced

Avoid simply stating whether you “liked” or “disliked” the book. Instead, use nuanced language to convey your message. Highlight the pros and cons of reading the type of literature you’ve reviewed, offering a balanced perspective.

Bringing It All Together

By following these guidelines, you’ll craft a conclusion that leaves your readers with a clear understanding of your thoughts and opinions on the book. Your review will be a valuable resource for those considering whether to pick up the book, and your witty and insightful analysis will make your review a pleasure to read. So conquer the world of book reviews, one captivating conclusion at a time!

How to Write a Book Review: Step 5 – Rating the Book (Optional)

You’ve masterfully crafted your book review, from the introduction to the conclusion. But wait, there’s one more step you might consider before calling it a day: rating the book. In this optional step of “how to write a book review,” we’ll explore the benefits and methods of assigning a rating to the book you’ve reviewed.

Why Rate the Book?

Sometimes, when writing a professional book review, it may not be appropriate to state whether you liked or disliked the book. In such cases, assigning a rating can be an effective way to get your message across without explicitly sharing your personal opinion.

How to Rate the Book

There are various rating systems you can use to evaluate the book, such as:

  • A star rating (e.g., 1 to 5 stars)
  • A numerical score (e.g., 1 to 10)
  • A letter grade (e.g., A+ to F)

Choose a rating system that best suits your style and the format of your review. Be consistent in your rating criteria, considering writing quality, character development, plot, and overall enjoyment.

Tips for Rating the Book

Here are some tips for rating the book effectively:

  • Be honest: Your rating should reflect your true feelings about the book. Don’t inflate or deflate your rating based on external factors, such as the book’s popularity or the author’s reputation.
  • Be fair:Consider the book’s merits and shortcomings when rating. Even if you didn’t enjoy the book, recognize its strengths and acknowledge them in your rating.
  • Be clear: Explain the rationale behind your rating so your readers understand the factors that influenced your evaluation.

Wrapping Up

By including a rating in your book review, you provide your readers with an additional insight into your thoughts on the book. While this step is optional, it can be a valuable tool for conveying your message subtly yet effectively. So, rate those books confidently, adding a touch of wit and wisdom to your book reviews.

Additional Tips on How to Write a Book Review: A Guide

In this segment, we’ll explore additional tips on how to write a book review. Get ready to captivate your readers and make your review a memorable one!

Hook ’em with an Intriguing Introduction

Keep your introduction precise and to the point. Readers have the attention span of a goldfish these days, so don’t let them swim away in boredom. Start with a bang and keep them hooked!

Embrace the World of Fiction

When learning how to write a book review, remember that reviewing fiction is often more engaging and effective. If your professor hasn’t assigned you a specific book, dive into the realm of fiction and select a novel that piques your interest.

Opinionated with Gusto

Don’t shy away from adding your own opinion to your review. A good book review always features the writer’s viewpoint and constructive criticism. After all, your readers want to know what  you  think!

Express Your Love (or Lack Thereof)

If you adored the book, let your readers know! Use phrases like “I’ll definitely return to this book again” to convey your enthusiasm. Conversely, be honest but respectful even if the book wasn’t your cup of tea.

Templates and Examples and Expert Help: Your Trusty Sidekicks

Feeling lost? You can always get help from formats, book review examples or online  college paper writing service  platforms. These trusty sidekicks will help you navigate the world of book reviews with ease. 

Be a Champion for New Writers and Literature

Remember to uplift new writers and pieces of literature. If you want to suggest improvements, do so kindly and constructively. There’s no need to be mean about anyone’s books – we’re all in this literary adventure together!

Criticize with Clarity, Not Cruelty

When adding criticism to your review, be clear but not mean. Remember, there’s a fine line between constructive criticism and cruelty. Tread lightly and keep your reader’s feelings in mind.

Avoid the Comparison Trap

Resist the urge to compare one writer’s book with another. Every book holds its worth, and comparing them will only confuse your reader. Stick to discussing the book at hand, and let it shine in its own light.

Top 7 Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Writing a book review can be a delightful and rewarding experience, especially when you balance analysis, wit, and personal insights. However, some common mistakes can kill the brilliance of your review. 

In this section of “how to write a book review,” we’ll explore the top 7 blunders writers commit and how to steer clear of them, with a dash of  modernist literature  examples and tips for students writing book reviews as assignments.

Succumbing to the Lure of Plot Summaries

Mistake: Diving headfirst into a plot summary instead of dissecting the book’s themes, characters, and writing style.

Example: “The Bell Jar chronicles the life of a young woman who experiences a mental breakdown.”

How to Avoid: Delve into the book’s deeper aspects, such as its portrayal of mental health, societal expectations, and the author’s distinctive narrative voice. Offer thoughtful insights and reflections, making your review a treasure trove of analysis.

Unleashing the Spoiler Kraken

Mistake: Spilling major plot twists or the ending without providing a spoiler warning, effectively ruining the reading experience for potential readers.

Example: “In Metamorphosis, the protagonist’s transformation into a monstrous insect leads to…”

How to Avoid: Tread carefully when discussing significant plot developments, and consider using spoiler warnings. Focus on the impact of these plot points on the overall narrative, character growth, or thematic resonance.

Riding the Personal Bias Express

Mistake: Allowing personal bias to hijack the review without providing sufficient evidence or reasoning to support opinions.

Example: “I detest books about existential crises, so The Sun Also Rises was a snoozefest.”

How to Avoid: While personal opinions are valid, it’s crucial to back them up with specific examples from the book. Discuss aspects like writing style, character development, or pacing to support your evaluation and provide a more balanced perspective.

Wielding the Vague Language Saber

Mistake: Resorting to generic, vague language that fails to capture the nuances of the book and can come across as clichéd.

Example: “This book was mind-blowing. It’s a must-read for everyone.”

How to Avoid: Use precise and descriptive language to express your thoughts. Employ specific examples and quotations to highlight memorable scenes, the author’s unique writing style, or the impact of the book’s themes on readers.

Ignoring the Contextualization Compass

Mistake: Neglecting to provide context about the author, genre, or cultural relevance of the book, leaving readers without a proper frame of reference.

Example: “This book is dull and unoriginal.”

How to Avoid: Offer readers a broader understanding by discussing the author’s background, the genre conventions the book adheres to or subverts, and any societal or historical contexts that inform the narrative. This helps readers appreciate the book’s uniqueness and relevance.

Overindulging in Personal Preferences

Mistake: Letting personal preferences overshadow an objective assessment of the book’s merits.

Example: “I don’t like stream-of-consciousness writing, so this book is automatically bad.”

How to Avoid: Acknowledge personal preferences but strive to evaluate the book objectively. Focus on the book’s strengths and weaknesses, considering how well it achieves its goals within its genre or intended audience.

Forgetting the Target Audience Telescope

Mistake: Failing to mention the book’s target audience or who might enjoy it, leading to confusion for potential readers.

Example: “This book is great for everyone.”

How to Avoid: Contemplate the book’s intended audience, genre, and themes. Mention who might particularly enjoy the book based on these factors, whether it’s fans of a specific genre, readers interested in character-driven stories, or those seeking thought-provoking narratives.

By dodging these common pitfalls, writers can craft insightful, balanced, and engaging book reviews that help readers make informed decisions about their reading choices.

These tips are particularly beneficial for students writing book reviews as assignments, as they ensure a well-rounded and thoughtful analysis.!

Many students requested us to cover how to write a book review. This thorough guide is sure to help you. At Paperperk, professionals are dedicated to helping students find their balance. We understand the importance of good grades, so we offer the finest writing service , ensuring students stay ahead of the curve. So seek expert help because only Paperperk is your perfect solution!

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25+ Book Review Templates and Ideas to Organize Your Thoughts

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Danika Ellis

Danika spends most of her time talking about queer women books at the Lesbrary. Blog: The Lesbrary Twitter: @DanikaEllis

View All posts by Danika Ellis

When I was a kid I loved reading, but I hated book reports. It felt impossible to boil a book down to a few lines or even a page of writing. Besides, by the time I had to write the report, I had already forgotten a lot. It never ceases to be painful to try to pull my thoughts and opinions out of my head and put them on the page, especially in a coherent way.

As an adult, I continue to usually find writing book reviews painful . And yet, I maintain a book blog with reviews of all the (bi and lesbian) books I read. Why? For one thing, I want to raise the visibility of these books — or, in the case of a book I loathed, warn other readers of what to expect. It helps me to build community with other book lovers. It’s also a great way to force myself pay attention to how I’m feeling while I’m reading a book and what my thoughts are afterwards. I have learned to take notes as I go, so I have something to refer to by the time I write a review, and it has me notice what a book is doing well (and what it isn’t). The review at the end helps me to organize my thoughts. I also find that I remember more once I’ve written a review.

Once you’ve decided it’s worthwhile to write a review, though, how do you get started? It can be a daunting task. The good news is, book reviews can adapt to whatever you want them to be. A book review can be a tweet with a thumbs up or thumbs down emoji, maybe with a sentence or two of your thoughts; it can also be an in-depth essay on the themes of the book and its influence on literature. Most are going to fall somewhere between those two! Let go of the idea of trying to create the One True Book Review. Everyone is looking for something different, and there is space for GIF-filled squee fests about a book and thoughtful, meditative explorations of a work.

This post offers a variety of book reviews elements that you can mix and match to create a book review template that works for you. Before you get started, though, there are some questions worth addressing.

black pencil on top of ruled paper

Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Book Review Template

Where will you be posting your book reviews.

An Instagram book review will likely look different from a blog book review. Consider which platform you will be using for your book review. You can adapt it for different platforms, or link to your original review, but it’s a good starting point. Instagram reviews tend to be a lot shorter than blog reviews, for instance.

Will you be using the same template every time?

Some book reviewers have a go-to book review template. Others have a different one for each genre, while another group doesn’t use a template at all and just reacts to whatever each book brings up.

Heading or no headings?

When choosing which book review elements to mix and match, you can also decide whether to include a header for each section (like Plot, Characterization, Writing, etc). Headers make reviews easier to browse, but they may not have the professional, essay-style look that you’re going for.

Why are you writing a review?

When selecting which elements to include in your review, consider what the purpose is. Do you want to better remember the plot by writing about it? You probably want to include a plot summary, then. Do you want to help readers decide whether they should read this book? A pros and cons list might be helpful. Are you trying to track something about your reading, like an attempt to read more books in translation or more books by authors of color? Are you trying to buy fewer books and read off your TBR shelf instead? These are all things you can note in a review, usually in a point-form basic information block at the beginning.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Jess | Books and Thread Co. (@booksandthreadco)

Book Review Templates and Formats

Essay-style.

This is a multi-paragraph review, usually with no headers. It’s the same format most newspapers and academics use for book reviews. Many essay-style reviews use informal categories in their writing, often discussing setting, writing, characters, and plot in their own paragraphs. They usually also discuss the big themes/messages of a story. Here are some questions to consider when writing an essay-style review:

What is the author trying to do? Don’t evaluate a romance novel based on a mystery novel’s criteria. First try to think about what the book was attempting to do, then try to evaluate if they achieved it. You can still note if you didn’t like it, but it’s good to know what it was aiming for first.

What are some of the themes of the story? What big message should the reader take away? Did you agree with what the book seemed to be saying? Why or why not?

How is this story relevant to the world? What is it saying about the time it was written in? About human nature? About society or current issues? Depending on the book, there may be more or less to dig into here.

What did this book make you think about? It may be that the themes in the book were just a launching off point. How did they inspire your own thinking? How did this book change you?

A Classic Book Review

This is probably the most common kind of book review template. It uses a few criteria, usually including Setting, Writing, Characters, and Plot (for a novel). The review then goes into some detail about each element, describing what the book did well, and where it fell short.

The advantage of this format is that it’s very straightforward and applies to almost any fiction read. It can also be adapted–you will likely have more to say about the plot in a mystery/thriller than a character study of a novel. A drawback, though, is that it can feel limiting. You might have thoughts that don’t neatly fit into these categories, or you could feel like you don’t have enough to say about some of the categories.

Pros and Cons

A common format for a Goodreads review is some variation of pros and cons. This might be “What I Liked/What I Didn’t Like” or “Reasons to Bump This Up Your TBR/Reasons to Bump This Down On Your TBR.” This is a very flexible system that can accommodate anything from a few bullet points each to paragraphs each. It gives a good at-a-glance impression of your thoughts (more cons than pros is a pretty good indication you didn’t like it). It also is broad enough that almost all your thoughts can likely be organized into those headings.

This is also a format that is easily mix and matched with the elements listed below. A brief review might give the title, author, genre, some brief selling points of the novel, and then a pros and cons list. Some reviews also include a “verdict” at the end. An example of this format:

a review title

The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O’Neill

🌟 Fantasy All-Ages Comic 💫 Adorable pet dragons ✨ A diverse cast

Pros: This book has beautiful artwork. It is a soothing read, and all the character are supportive of each other. This is a story about friendship and kindness.

Cons: Don’t expect a fast-moving plot or a lot of conflict. This is a very gentle read.

Another approach to the review is not, strictly speaking, a book review template at all. Instead, it’s something like “5 Reasons to Read TITLE by Author” or “The # Most Shocking Plot Twists in X Series.” An advantage of this format is that it can be very to-the-point: if you want to convince people to read a book, it makes sense to just write a list of reasons they should read the book. It may also be more likely to get clicked on–traditional book reviews often get less views than more general posts.

On the other hand, listicles can come off as gimmicky or click-bait. You’ll have to decide for yourself if the book matches this format, and whether you are writing this out of genuine enthusiasm or are just trying to bend a review to be more clickable.

Your Own Original Rating System

Lots of reviewers decide to make their own review format based on what matters to them. This is often accompanied by a ratings system. For instance, the BookTube channel Book Roast uses the CAWPILE system:

CAWPILE is an acronym for the criteria she rates: Characters, Atmosphere, Writing, Plot, Intrigue, Logic, Enjoyment. Each of those are rated 1–10, and the average given is the overall rating. By making your own ratings/review system, you can prioritize what matters to you.

My favorite rating system is Njeri’s from Onyx Pages , because it shows exactly what she’s looking for from books, and it helps her to think about and speak about the things she values:

A “Live Tweet” or Chronological Review

Another format possibility is live tweeting (or updating as you go on Goodreads, or whatever your platform of choice is). This has you document your initial thoughts as you read, and it’s usually informal and often silly. You can add what you’re loving, what you’re hating, and what questions you have as you go.

This is a fun format for when you’re reading a popular book for the first time. That way, other people can cackle at how unprepared you are as you read it. This requires you to remember to always have your phone on you as you read, to get your authentic thoughts as they happen, but it saves on having to write a more in-depth review. Alternately, some people include both a “first impressions” section and a more in-depth analysis section in their final review.

Get Creative

There are plenty of book review templates to choose from and elements to mix-and-match, but you can also respond in a completely original way. You could create a work of art in response to the book! Here are some options:

  • Writing a song , a short story, or a poem
  • Writing a letter to the author or the main character (you don’t have to send it to the author!)
  • Writing an “interview” of a character from the book, talk show style
  • Making a visual response, like a collage or painting
  • Making a book diorama, like your elementary school days!

Mix-and-Match Elements of a Book Review

Most book reviews are made up of a few different parts, which can be combined in lots of different ways. Here is a selection to choose from! These might also give you ideas for your own elements. Don’t take on too much, though! It can easily become an overwhelming amount of information for readers.

Information

Usually a book review starts with some basic information about the book. What you consider basic information, though, is up for interpretation! Consider what you and your audience will think is important. Here are some ideas:

  • The title and author (pretty important)
  • The book’s cover
  • Format (audiobook, comic, poetry, etc)
  • Genre (this can be broad, like SFF, or narrow, like Silkpunk or Dark Academia)
  • Content warnings
  • Source (where did you get the book? Was is borrowed from the library, bought, or were you sent an ARC?)
  • Synopsis/plot summary (your own or the publisher’s)
  • What kind of representation there is in the novel (including race, disability, LGBTQ characters, etc)
  • Anything you’re tracking in your reading, including: authors of color, authors’ country, if a book is in translation, etc

Review Elements

Once you’ve established your basic information, you’re into the review itself! Some of these are small additions to a review, while others are a little more time-intensive.

Bullet point elements:

  • Rating (star rating, thumbs up/down, recommend/wouldn’t recommend, or your own scale)
  • Who would like it/Who wouldn’t like it
  • Read-alikes (or movies and TV shows like the book)
  • Describe the book using an emoji or emojis
  • Describe the book using a gif or gifs
  • Favorite line(s) from the book
  • New vocabulary/the most beautiful words in the novel
  • How it made you feel (in a sentence or two)
  • One word or one sentence review
  • Bullet points listing the selling points of a book
  • BooksandLala’s Scary, Unsettling, and Intrigue ratings, for horror
  • World-building, for fantasy and science fiction titles
  • Art, for comics
  • Narration, for audiobooks
  • Romance, for…romance
  • Heat level, for erotica

Visual elements:

  • Design a graphic (usually incorporating the cover, your star rating, and some other basic info)
  • Take a selfie of yourself holding the book, with your expression as the review
  • Make a mood board
  • Design your own book cover
  • Make fan art

Elements to incorporate into a review:

  • Quick/initial thoughts (often while reading or immediately after reading), then a more in-depth review (common on Goodreads)
  • A list of facts about the book or a character from the book
  • Book club questions about the book
  • Spoiler/non-spoiler sections
  • Research: look up interviews with the author and critique of the book, incorporate it (cited!) into your review
  • Links to other resources, such as interviews or other reviews — especially #OwnVoices reviews
  • A story of your own, whether it’s your experience reading the book, or something it reminded you of

This is not a complete list! There are so many ways to write a book review, and it should reflect your own relationship with books, as well as your audience. If you’re looking for more ways to keep track of your reading, you’ll also like 50+ Beautiful Bujo Spread Ideas to Track Your Reading .

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a review title

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9 customer review examples + template for getting more reviews

Business owner transitioned to RingCentral team communications platform, making it easier for employees to hold team meetings and see each other face-to-face

When it comes to making decisions, we humans aren’t always independent thinkers. From buying our morning coffee to big-ticket items like a new car, we depend on our network’s opinions, advice, or perspectives for making the right decision. 

With the internet, those networks get way, way bigger. We’re no longer confined to just friends, family, and coworkers—we can see what people all around the world think with just a quick Google search. 

And these customer reviews hold serious weight with shoppers. Online reviews—either positive or negative—can impact over 93% of consumers’ decisions . 1  

While reviews can accumulate on their own, they shouldn’t exist in a vacuum. Knowing how to ask for reviews, leverage them to get more business, and respond to less-than-favorable customer testimonials can improve your business image and land you more long-lasting customers. 

Keep reading to learn about:

  • Why customer reviews are so important 
  • 9 types of reviews and how to get more of them  
  • How to respond to positive and negative customer reviews

🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 Want to get more customer reviews for your business? Use these outreach templates (and DIY customer review builder!) to help your customers give you the best review possible.

Get free review templates

Why are customer reviews so important?

Customer reviews build something known as social proof, a phenomenon that states people are influenced by those around them. This might include friends and family, industry experts and influencers, or even internet strangers. 

Social proof can push customers who are on the fence about buying a product to make a purchase (or consider other alternatives). While there are many different forms of social proof (like influencer campaigns and company partnerships), customer reviews have a special place in shoppers’ hearts. 

Think about the last time you tried a new restaurant. Or bought a vacuum. You probably looked for reviews online first, right? When considering a purchase, people want first-hand perspectives from other people just like them. While a famous influencer might catch their attention, experiences from peers are also important if you want to convince them to buy . 

Depending on the industry your business is in, customer reviews might be especially important because they help offset a generally negative view of certain industries. For example, if you work in advertising, you’ve got a bit of an uphill battle— only 23% of respondents surveyed in the Customer Communications Review said that ad agencies provided “very good” or “pretty good” service, and ad agencies rank dead last in comparison to other major industries:

industry rankings customer service

Thank you for your interest in RingCentral.

9 customer review examples (and how to get more reviews)

Customer reviews come in many different forms. Including a few good ones on your website can improve your chances of winning more customers—who doesn’t want that?

And anything you can do to make it as easy for your happy customers to write those reviews for you will help. For example, here’s a handy Mad-Libs-style customer review builder that you can attach to your message or email to the customer when you’re asking if they can write a review or testimonial for you:

DIY customer review builder

You can download this customer review template, along with examples of outreach communications, to help you save a ton of time as you’re gathering customer reviews 👇

Let’s walk through the different kinds of customer reviews, starting with the easiest ones to collect. ​

Testimonials or quotes from your customers are one of the most common forms of customer reviews. You’re most likely to find them on a company website, typically on the homepage, or in their marketing materials. 

Here’s an example of a quote testimonial from WordPress : 

Quote testimonial from WordPress

These short (typically only one to two sentence) overviews of how your product or service impacted a company helps give your brand credibility. With quote testimonials, those impressive claims you’re making actually sound believable because they’re backed up by someone who’s, well, not you. 

We list customer quotes as the easiest type of review to get because they involve very little effort for you and your customer. Because you’re in control of adding them to your website, all you need to do is ask your customers to share their experience in an email, in person, or over the phone. 

Quotes also allow you to choose the great customer service stories , perspectives, or opinions that you think are most valuable. You can highlight your high-profile clients—and who says you have to use the less-than-favorable reviews?

How to get a quote review:

Ask for it. Call up your long-term customers and ask if they’d be willing to share a testimonial or a bit about their experience working with you to display on your website.

Or look for positive words of encouragement in email and social media responses or everyday conversations. If a customer gives you a great quote, ask if you can showcase it on your website.

You might be on multiple social media platforms, so how can you keep track of all these messages? If you’re providing omnichannel customer service , you might already be using a tool that can consolidate all your customer conversations and communication channels into one handy dashboard. Like this:

To get awesome customer reviews, you need to provide awesome customer service, whether that’s by focusing on proactive or agile customer service.

2. Peer review sites

Peer review sites are probably what you think of when you think of customer reviews. These include Google reviews, Facebook reviews, Yelp, Amazon, or G2 Crowd (if you’re a software company). 

You’ve probably encountered these kinds of reviews while you were deciding whether or not to try a local business for the first time: 

Review about Kalaya Thai Kitchen

Reviews on peer-to-peer sites can happen organically, often removing the company from the review process entirely. (This can be a nightmare if you’re managing a small business , since one bad review can have a huge impact, but this also makes the reviews seem more authentic.) Customers don’t need to worry about if companies have edited them to be more favorable (or deleted reviews they didn’t agree with). 

However, this also means you’re not as in control of these kinds of reviews. 

But that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything at all. These peer-to-peer review sites are often one of the first places a potential customer looks when considering a purchase, so ensuring you have some positive reviews on each is important. 

How to get a review on a peer review site:

Again, the best way to do this is to ask. Send an email, ask in person, or add links to your website that make it easy for customers to leave their opinion.  

3. Social media

Social media is becoming just as much a resource for businesses that want to build brand awareness as it is for people who are interested in connecting with brands. But don’t just your social media campaigns to get prospects. Not only are customers turning to social media to ask brands questions or learn about their services, they’re also using their accounts to share opinions and reviews. 

Here’s an example from American Eagle’s spin-off clothing line Aerie: 

Customer asking a question through social media

Like peer-to-peer review sites, the company usually isn’t involved in the review process—making them feel more transparent and honest. But one of the biggest benefits of having reviews on social networks is that prospective customers can get a feel for who the customer is in ways they can’t with testimonials or peer-to-peer review sites. 

How to get social media reviews:

Encourage customer reviews on social media by creating communities where customers are empowered to share their experiences or purchases. For example, Aerie uses the hashtag #AerieReal to make it easy to see how customers are styling their items in real life: 

Customer reviews of Aerie using the hashtag #AerieReal

Create a unique hashtag to compile your customer reviews in one place.

4. Case studies 

Case studies dive deep into customer results and are particularly useful for businesses selling to businesses (aka the B2B space). 

Here’s an example of a case study from RingCentral and our client Box : 

RingCentral case study about Box

Case studies—unlike traditional customer reviews—are written from the perspective of the company doing the work or providing the product. Rather than the customer explaining how they helped, the company walks through what they did to help their customer reach their goals. 

This perspective gives potential customers an idea of how your team works. It gives you a chance to show off your problem-solving skills and attention to detail, and it allows your potential customer to envision how you might help them. 

How to get case study reviews:

Write your own! Be sure to mix in quotes, results, and info from your customer to back up your claims. Each case study should read like a partnership—not just a one-sided perspective. 

5. Customer stories and interviews 

We all love a good story—and that’s probably clear in the review types that we’ve listed so far. Customers want to see themselves in the people your company has already helped; they want to know what your customer experience is like. One way to do this is through customer stories and interviews. 

Squarespace is one company that does this well:

Squarespace Stories and Interviews

Through stories and interviews, Squarespace shares who their customers are, what the vision or mission of their website is, and how Squarespace provides them with the platform to reach those goals. 

For Squarespace, they get an opportunity to showcase how diverse their client pool is. But it gives customers an opportunity to connect with each other too. Similar to case studies, stories and interviews paint a larger picture of what the customer is hoping to accomplish—only you have to be less self-centered here and make sure your customer is the star of the story. 

How to get customer story-style reviews:

Stories and interviews give a more personal perspective. Instead of hearing from your company, they’re hearing stories straight from the customer. So, to get those stories, send customers a questionnaire or old in-person interviews.

Give your customers an opportunity to share their stories, then focus on filling in the rest of the narrative with images, videos, and other content. 

💡 Get more positive customer reviews with these free outreach templates (and DIY customer review builder).

Get free templates

6. Blog posts 

Blog post reviews give your potential customer an opportunity to really dig in deep into your product or service, and even your brand and culture as a company. Rather than just a sentence or two like a customer might find on your website or a few hundred words displayed on a peer-to-peer review page, blog posts can be thousands of words, complete with step-by-step instructions with images that thoroughly explain a process or perspective. 

This is a great example of a blog post review on Warby Parker : 

Blog post review on Warby Parker

These kinds of reviews can typically answer more complicated questions that require more space and time—something that isn’t really possible with traditional reviews. 

But one of the biggest benefits of blog post reviews is the SEO value, meaning you can get these pages to show up on Google when people are searching for reviews of your business. If you’ve ever searched for “[product] review,” you’ve probably encountered a post like this before. Because these posts tend to be descriptive, long-form, and useful, they can rank pretty highly. 

How to get blog post reviews:

Getting reviews like this one can be a little difficult. After all, not everyone has a blog to write on. You can increase your chances by offering a free sample or trial of your products or other goodies to industry influencers and experts who run popular blogs. 

Consumers like videos. This isn’t anything new. In fact, 85% of internet users in the United States say they watch video content—making it a strong contender as an outlet for your customer reviews 2 . 

Shopify is one example of a company using video testimonials: 

Shopify video testimonials

Video reviews can give potential buyers something most written reviews can’t: emotion. 

Viewers can see the difference your products or services have made. They can build a stronger connection with your customers, making it easier to put themselves in their shoes. These deeper connections can spark more sales . 

Creating videos doesn’t need to be complicated. Customers sharing selfie-style videos talking about what your product has done, or just stationed in front of a camera, can get the same message across. 

While you want the image and audio to be clear in the videos you share, the quality of the message is more important. If you have a customer willing to discuss on camera how you’ve helped them, this can go a long way. 

Here’s another video review of Shopify, this time from YouTube : 

This one doesn’t involve a lot of money or production—just a user sitting in front of his computer camera giving his opinion of the tool. And it still has over 15,000 views.

How to get more video reviews: 

If you have the budget for larger production projects you want to feature on your website (like our first example), reach out to the customers you think have the best story or video presence. If you’re spending the money, you’re in control of the story. 

However, to get more reviews like the second, treat it the same as blog post reviews. Reach out to industry experts who have large YouTube followings and offer free trials or discounted products in exchange for an honest review. 

8. User-generated content 

User-generated content includes social media posts, videos, images, audio, or other kinds of content created by—you guessed it—a user of your products or services. Some of the review types we’ve already covered would fall into this category (like social media posts or customer videos). 

But user-generated content isn’t just an online review or a customer sharing an image with your hashtag. That’s just the start. You then need to take that content and use it in a bigger, coordinated way. 

Here’s an example of how direct-to-consumer mattress brand Casper does it:

Casper User-generated Content

Like the Aerie example, Casper encourages users to share pictures using their products (in this case, sleeping on their mattresses) on social media. When someone tags Casper in their post, the image is added to a reel on their website. 

They also share customer posts on their own Instagram feed:

Casper's Instagram Feed

Dogs and babies do well on Instagram, haven’t you heard?

User-generated content puts your customers’ experiences front and center. Although they’re not exactly traditional reviews, prospective customers can see how happy others are with your products. It helps build authenticity— something millennials love . 

How to get more user-generated content: 

This one follows the same tips as social media reviews. Encourage your audience to share their experiences by creating a unique hashtag or tell them to tag you in their posts. 

Then start commenting, sharing, and engaging with your own audience. When your audience sees you showcasing other users’ experiences or getting into conversations, they’ll jump to get involved. 

9. Brand ambassadors 

Think of brand ambassadors as an external sales team. They’re loyal customers who love your brand or product so much they’re willing to recommend your products or services to their own networks. The bonus with having brand ambassadors is that they’re usually seriously obsessed fans—and are probably more familiar with your product than even your own team.

Brand ambassadors don’t need to have large followings. In fact, anyone can be a brand ambassador. You probably have brand ambassadors without even knowing it. 

One of the best examples of brand ambassadors online is for the budgeting software, You Need a Budget (YNAB). Users are active on platforms like Reddit , sharing advice on how the platform has changed their life for the better:

You Need a Budget (YNAB) online brand ambassadors

How to get more brand ambassadors:

While you could pay for brand ambassadors, you’re better off creating them organically. In YNAB’s case, they did so by providing a unique spin to traditional budgeting software. By helping customers who otherwise would have slipped through the cracks, they’ve created a loyal fan base. 

It takes more time to build brand ambassadors naturally, but this is a high-reward review since their advocacy will be much, much stronger, directed, and in-depth than your average Yelp review. 

👀  How can you get more customer reviews? Start with these free outreach templates (and DIY customer review builder).

How to respond to customer reviews 

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again—your customer reviews shouldn’t exist in a vacuum. 

If you’re just allowing customers to leave reviews on peer-to-peer pages, social media, or their own blogs without acknowledging them or responding to them, you’re not making use of powerful content that has been known to convert leads.

But your response process should look different depending on if the review is positive or not. 

How to respond to a positive review  

Congrats! A customer left you a positive review. Time to pop the champagne—and write a response. 

Responding to a positive review is a lot less stressful than responding to something negative but just as important. Letting your happy customers know you’ve seen their kind words and you appreciate their feedback can encourage them to continue singing your praises. 

Here’s how to respond to positive reviews: 

  • Make your message personalized. Customers will quickly realize if you’re just copying and pasting messages to all your reviews. Instead of giving a generic “Thanks!” take the time to write a thought-out, personalized message.
  • Respond in a day or two. Fast responses show you’re paying attention. While you’re not expected to drop everything to respond to reviews, a quick response—especially on social media—can keep customers engaged with your brand. Reduce your response time by integrating your social media apps with your cloud-based communications system. RingCentral connects with top social platforms, like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, so you can easily respond without needing to switch platforms.
  • Show your personality. This is your chance to engage directly with a happy customer, so make the most of it. Respond with some personality—humor, kindness, wit, you get the idea—to really connect with your customer. Regardless of your brand’s personality, be authentic. Your audience will be able to tell if you’re not.
  • Give a recommendation. Now is a great time to point your customer in the direction of another product, a piece of content, or something related to their review. (This is a great way to personalize your response!) For example, if they say they enjoyed a product, recommend they look into a supplementary project, or suggest they check out a blog post that tells them how to make the most of their purchase. Your main goal is to keep them engaged! 
  • Ask if you can showcase their review. If someone leaves you a particularly stellar or unique testimonial, ask for permission to share it! Display it on your website, show it off on social media, or create user-generated content out of it. Showing off the kind words of your happy customers is more powerful than just telling people how awesome you are.

How to respond to a negative review

Negative reviews are much less exciting than positive reviews. They can be stressful, and responding can feel like a lost cause. But even the most unhappy customer can change their opinion with the right encouragement. 

Responding to a negative review is a little less “just be yourself” and a little more strategic: 

  • Respond promptly. Again, you may not need to drop everything you’re doing to respond, but it’s more important to get to negative reviews quickly than positive reviews. If a negative review is posted for too long without a response, not only is it frustrating for the unhappy customer, but it can also leave a bad taste in prospective customers’ mouths. Do your best to get to negative responses in just a few hours.
  • Put the customer first. You may not agree with what the customer is saying, but that doesn’t mean you should be on the defensive. Instead, listen and see where the customer is coming from—you have to identify where their frustration lies. Think about the response you would want in their shoes and try and find a solution.
  • Respond publicly, but push the conversation to a private channel. You don’t want to get into a debate with an unhappy customer on Yelp, but you also don’t want it to seem like you’re not acknowledging negative reviews. Reply to unhappy customers on the platform they’ve left the review on, but encourage them to continue the conversation through a private message on social media, email, or phone call. 

If you have a phone or communications tool, it can make this part easier. For example, RingCentral integrates with other popular social media apps to let you switch between platforms while keeping the integrity of your conversations:

answering customer questions through RingCentral Engage Digital

(When frustrated customers don’t have to repeat their issues over and over, it might help soothe them a bit and give you a better shot at turning the interaction around.)

  • Follow through. Don’t just apologize and call it settled. In order to change your customer’s opinion, you need to find a solution to their problem and follow through on it. Work with the customer to discover what will change their opinion—and follow up after to see if you’ve been successful.
  • Don’t get it taken down. It can be tempting to get a negative review removed, but it can hurt the trust you’ve built with other customers—especially if that unhappy customer realizes they’ve been silenced. If you respond the right way, leaving the review up also proves to prospective customers that you care about your customers’ opinions. Sometimes, an unhappy customer will even write a positive follow-up review to show people that you actually turned things around for them:

Positive follow-up review from a customer

Replying to reviews (both positive and negative) appropriately means having open communication with your customers. Bringing reviews in as part of your customer feedback cycle can help you identify communication gaps or other areas where you’re not meeting expectations. 

What can you learn from these customer review examples?

Asking your audience to buy from you without any reinforcement from other customers is an uphill battle. Without any reviews or social proof, you’re expecting them to invest solely on blind trust—and it doesn’t work well. 

Rather than making your job more difficult, make the most of the happy experiences your customers choose to share. From peer-to-peer pages to your own website and social media accounts, showcasing positive reviews—and responding to negative reviews the right way—can help you land more customers.

1 thedrum.com/news/2017/03/27/online-reviews-impact-purchasing-decisions-over-93-consumers-report-suggests

2 statista.com/statistics/272835/share-of-internet-users-who-watch-online-videos

Originally published Feb 19, 2020, updated Jan 29, 2023

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How to Write an Article Review: Template & Examples

An article review is an academic assignment that invites you to study a piece of academic research closely. Then, you should present its summary and critically evaluate it using the knowledge you’ve gained in class and during your independent study. If you get such a task at college or university, you shouldn’t confuse it with a response paper, which is a distinct assignment with other purposes (we’ll talk about it in detail below).

Our specialists will write a custom essay specially for you!

In this article, prepared by Custom-Writing experts, you’ll find: 

  • the intricacies of article review writing;
  • the difference between an article review and similar assignments;
  • a step-by-step algorithm for review composition;
  • a couple of samples to guide you throughout the writing process.

So, if you wish to study our article review example and discover helpful writing tips, keep reading.

❓ What Is an Article Review?

  • ✍️ Writing Steps

📑 Article Review Format

🔗 references.

An article review is an academic paper that summarizes and critically evaluates the information presented in your selected article. 

This image shows what an article review is.

The first thing you should note when approaching the task of an article review is that not every article is suitable for this assignment. Let’s have a look at the variety of articles to understand what you can choose from.

Popular Vs. Scholarly Articles

In most cases, you’ll be required to review a scholarly, peer-reviewed article – one composed in compliance with rigorous academic standards. Yet, the Web is also full of popular articles that don’t present original scientific value and shouldn’t be selected for a review.  

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Not sure how to distinguish these two types? Here is a comparative table to help you out.

Article Review vs. Response Paper

Now, let’s consider the difference between an article review and a response paper:

  • If you’re assigned to critique a scholarly article , you will need to compose an article review .  
  • If your subject of analysis is a popular article , you can respond to it with a well-crafted response paper .  

The reason for such distinctions is the quality and structure of these two article types. Peer-reviewed, scholarly articles have clear-cut quality criteria, allowing you to conduct and present a structured assessment of the assigned material. Popular magazines have loose or non-existent quality criteria and don’t offer an opportunity for structured evaluation. So, they are only fit for a subjective response, in which you can summarize your reactions and emotions related to the reading material.  

All in all, you can structure your response assignments as outlined in the tips below.

✍️ How to Write an Article Review: Step by Step

Here is a tried and tested algorithm for article review writing from our experts. We’ll consider only the critical review variety of this academic assignment. So, let’s get down to the stages you need to cover to get a stellar review.  

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Read the Article

As with any reviews, reports, and critiques, you must first familiarize yourself with the assigned material. It’s impossible to review something you haven’t read, so set some time for close, careful reading of the article to identify:

  • Its topic.  
  • Its type.  
  • The author’s main points and message. 
  • The arguments they use to prove their points. 
  • The methodology they use to approach the subject. 

In terms of research type , your article will usually belong to one of three types explained below. 

Summarize the Article

Now that you’ve read the text and have a general impression of the content, it’s time to summarize it for your readers. Look into the article’s text closely to determine:

  • The thesis statement , or general message of the author.  
  • Research question, purpose, and context of research.  
  • Supporting points for the author’s assumptions and claims.  
  • Major findings and supporting evidence.  

As you study the article thoroughly, make notes on the margins or write these elements out on a sheet of paper. You can also apply a different technique: read the text section by section and formulate its gist in one phrase or sentence. Once you’re done, you’ll have a summary skeleton in front of you.

Evaluate the Article

The next step of review is content evaluation. Keep in mind that various research types will require a different set of review questions. Here is a complete list of evaluation points you can include.

Get an originally-written paper according to your instructions!

Write the Text

After completing the critical review stage, it’s time to compose your article review.

The format of this assignment is standard – you will have an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. The introduction should present your article and summarize its content. The body will contain a structured review according to all four dimensions covered in the previous section. The concluding part will typically recap all the main points you’ve identified during your assessment.  

It is essential to note that an article review is, first of all, an academic assignment. Therefore, it should follow all rules and conventions of academic composition, such as:

  • No contractions . Don’t use short forms, such as “don’t,” “can’t,” “I’ll,” etc. in academic writing. You need to spell out all those words.  
  • Formal language and style . Avoid conversational phrasing and words that you would naturally use in blog posts or informal communication. For example, don’t use words like “pretty,” “kind of,” and “like.”  
  • Third-person narrative . Academic reviews should be written from the third-person point of view, avoiding statements like “I think,” “in my opinion,” and so on.  
  • No conversational forms . You shouldn’t turn to your readers directly in the text by addressing them with the pronoun “you.” It’s vital to keep the narrative neutral and impersonal.  
  • Proper abbreviation use . Consult the list of correct abbreviations , like “e.g.” or “i.e.,” for use in your academic writing. If you use informal abbreviations like “FYA” or “f.i.,” your professor will reduce the grade.  
  • Complete sentences . Make sure your sentences contain the subject and the predicate; avoid shortened or sketch-form phrases suitable for a draft only.  
  • No conjunctions at the beginning of a sentence . Remember the FANBOYS rule – don’t start a sentence with words like “and” or “but.” They often seem the right way to build a coherent narrative, but academic writing rules disfavor such usage.  
  • No abbreviations or figures at the beginning of a sentence . Never start a sentence with a number — spell it out if you need to use it anyway. Besides, sentences should never begin with abbreviations like “e.g.”  

Finally, a vital rule for an article review is properly formatting the citations. We’ll discuss the correct use of citation styles in the following section.

When composing an article review, keep these points in mind:

  • Start with a full reference to the reviewed article so the reader can locate it quickly.  
  • Ensure correct formatting of in-text references.  
  • Provide a complete list of used external sources on the last page of the review – your bibliographical entries .  

You’ll need to understand the rules of your chosen citation style to meet all these requirements. Below, we’ll discuss the two most common referencing styles – APA and MLA.

Article Review in APA

When you need to compose an article review in the APA format , here is the general bibliographical entry format you should use for journal articles on your reference page:  

  • Author’s last name, First initial. Middle initial. (Year of Publication). Name of the article. Name of the Journal, volume (number), pp. #-#. https://doi.org/xx.xxx/yyyy

Horigian, V. E., Schmidt, R. D., & Feaster, D. J. (2021). Loneliness, mental health, and substance use among US young adults during COVID-19. Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, 53 (1), pp. 1-9. https://doi.org/10.1080/02791072.2020.1836435

Your in-text citations should follow the author-date format like this:

  • If you paraphrase the source and mention the author in the text: According to Horigian et al. (2021), young adults experienced increased levels of loneliness, depression, and anxiety during the pandemic. 
  • If you paraphrase the source and don’t mention the author in the text: Young adults experienced increased levels of loneliness, depression, and anxiety during the pandemic (Horigian et al., 2021). 
  • If you quote the source: As Horigian et al. (2021) point out, there were “elevated levels of loneliness, depression, anxiety, alcohol use, and drug use among young adults during COVID-19” (p. 6). 

Note that your in-text citations should include “et al.,” as in the examples above, if your article has 3 or more authors. If you have one or two authors, your in-text citations would look like this:

  • One author: “According to Smith (2020), depression is…” or “Depression is … (Smith, 2020).”
  • Two authors: “According to Smith and Brown (2020), anxiety means…” or “Anxiety means (Smith & Brown, 2020).”

Finally, in case you have to review a book or a website article, here are the general formats for citing these source types on your APA reference list.

Article Review in MLA

If your assignment requires MLA-format referencing, here’s the general format you should use for citing journal articles on your Works Cited page: 

  • Author’s last name, First name. “Title of an Article.” Title of the Journal , vol. #, no. #, year, pp. #-#. 

Horigian, Viviana E., et al. “Loneliness, Mental Health, and Substance Use Among US Young Adults During COVID-19.” Journal of Psychoactive Drugs , vol. 53, no. 1, 2021, pp. 1-9.

In-text citations in the MLA format follow the author-page citation format and look like this:

  • According to Horigian et al., young adults experienced increased levels of loneliness, depression, and anxiety during the pandemic (6).
  • Young adults experienced increased levels of loneliness, depression, and anxiety during the pandemic (Horigian et al. 6).

Like in APA, the abbreviation “et al.” is only needed in MLA if your article has 3 or more authors.

If you need to cite a book or a website page, here are the general MLA formats for these types of sources.

✅ Article Review Template

Here is a handy, universal article review template to help you move on with any review assignment. We’ve tried to make it as generic as possible to guide you in the academic process.

📝 Article Review Examples

The theory is good, but practice is even better. Thus, we’ve created three brief examples to show you how to write an article review. You can study the full-text samples by following the links.

📃 Men, Women, & Money   

This article review examines a famous piece, “Men, Women & Money – How the Sexes Differ with Their Finances,” published by Amy Livingston in 2020. The author of this article claims that men generally spend more money than women. She makes this conclusion from a close analysis of gender-specific expenditures across five main categories: food, clothing, cars, entertainment, and general spending patterns. Livingston also looks at men’s approach to saving to argue that counter to the common perception of women’s light-hearted attitude to money, men are those who spend more on average.  

📃 When and Why Nationalism Beats Globalism   

This is a review of Jonathan Heidt’s 2016 article titled “When and Why Nationalism Beats Globalism,” written as an advocacy of right-wing populism rising in many Western states. The author illustrates the case with the election of Donald Trump as the US President and the rise of right-wing rhetoric in many Western countries. These examples show how nationalist sentiment represents a reaction to global immigration and a failure of globalization.  

📃 Sleep Deprivation   

This is a review of the American Heart Association’s article titled “The Dangers of Sleep Deprivation.” It discusses how the national organization concerned with the American population’s cardiovascular health links the lack of high-quality sleep to far-reaching health consequences. The organization’s experts reveal how a consistent lack of sleep leads to Alzheimer’s disease development, obesity, type 2 diabetes, etc.  

✏️ Article Review FAQ

A high-quality article review should summarize the assigned article’s content and offer data-backed reactions and evaluations of its quality in terms of the article’s purpose, methodology, and data used to argue the main points. It should be detailed, comprehensive, objective, and evidence-based.

The purpose of writing a review is to allow students to reflect on research quality and showcase their critical thinking and evaluation skills. Students should exhibit their mastery of close reading of research publications and their unbiased assessment.

The content of your article review will be the same in any format, with the only difference in the assignment’s formatting before submission. Ensure you have a separate title page made according to APA standards and cite sources using the parenthetical author-date referencing format.

You need to take a closer look at various dimensions of an assigned article to compose a valuable review. Study the author’s object of analysis, the purpose of their research, the chosen method, data, and findings. Evaluate all these dimensions critically to see whether the author has achieved the initial goals. Finally, offer improvement recommendations to add a critique aspect to your paper.

  • Scientific Article Review: Duke University  
  • Book and Article Reviews: William & Mary, Writing Resources Center  
  • Sample Format for Reviewing a Journal Article: Boonshoft School of Medicine  
  • Research Paper Review – Structure and Format Guidelines: New Jersey Institute of Technology  
  • Article Review: University of Waterloo  
  • Article Review: University of South Australia  
  • How to Write a Journal Article Review: University of Newcastle Library Guides  
  • Writing Help: The Article Review: Central Michigan University Libraries  
  • Write a Critical Review of a Scientific Journal Article: McLaughlin Library  
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Oxford House

  • How To Write A Review: Cambridge B2 First

How to Write a Review - Cambridge B2 First | Oxford House Barcelona

  • Posted on 24/07/2019
  • Categories: Blog
  • Tags: B2 First , Cambridge Exams , FCE , First Certificate , Resources to learn English , Writing

Students who are taking their B2 First Certificate exam (FCE) will be asked to do two pieces of writing within an 80 minute time limit. Part 1 is always an essay . Part 2 is where you can get a bit more creative. You might, for example, be asked to write a letter, a report or a review, all of which have their own style and set guidelines.

When writing a review it can be difficult to know where to start. But don’t be afraid! We are here to help you every step of the way.

Remember a review could be for a book, a film, a magazine, a restaurant or even a product .

Three steps to writing a great review

Let’s start with something simple. Imagine. You turn over the page to your writing part 2 and you see this question:

How to write a review - Cambridge B2 First | Oxford House Barcelona

Question taken from Cambridge Assessment English website . (Feb 2018)

Step One: Make a plan

The first thing to do is to make a plan, just like we did in our B2 First essay guidelines .

Think of a book you read in which the main character behaved in a surprising way. This could be surprising in a good way, where the character does something amazing and helps somebody. Or maybe there’s a twist at the end and the character does something really shocking. Either way take some time to really think about your choice.

E.g. I’m going to choose The Great Gatsby, because I had to read the book 3 times when I was at school and I’ve seen the film so I feel like I know it really well .

The structure

Next, think of the structure. Consider all the parts of the question and use that to help organise your review. Make notes about the following:

  • An interesting title
  • A catchy introduction
  • A summary of the plot
  • A surprising moment
  • Your recommendation

Remember you’re going to want to separate these with clear paragraphs that are going to help the examiner read to the end without getting a headache.

You also need to consider the tone and how the review should sound to the reader. Remember this is for a magazine. Think about all the magazines you like to read. You want to sound chatty and grab the reader’s attention, but not bore them to sleep. Think semi-formal but friendly!

Useful Vocabulary

Now brainstorm some useful vocabulary for your chosen book, including lots of adjectives. Avoid using boring adjectives like good or bad . It’s much more exciting to say ‘amazing’ and ‘disappointing’ or ‘ terrific ’ and ‘terrible’ .

Here’s some more useful vocabulary to get you started:

superficial / deceptive / fascinating / unbelievable / rich / lonely / kind / reserved/ to be set in / to be written by / prosperity / characters / jazz age / protagonist / atmosphere / author / chapter / ending / fictional towns / prohibition / novel / on the outskirts / sad story.

Your next step is to think of some linking phrases. These are going to help tie together your thoughts and bring your review to life!

  • Overall if you like…
  • I was pleasantly surprised by…
  • In fact…
  • What I disliked the most was…
  • The book contains…
  • As well as…
  • This well-written book…
  • Unbelievably…

Step Two: Write it

Once you have a solid plan, writing your review should be easy!

First start with an interesting title. E.g. The Unexpected Anti-Hero. It relates to both the book that’s being reviewed and the question. It’s also short and snappy .

Next write an engaging introduction. Maybe start with a rhetorical question, for example:

Are you a fan of the Jazz Age? Then this is the book for you!

Or a general statement about the book that will hook the reader:

The Great Gatsby is a classic, with many twists and turns.

You could also give some background information. Here we use the past simple:

The Great Gatsby was written by F.S.Fitzgerald and is set in prosperous Long Island in 1922.

The second paragraph should summarise the plot (note – we usually describe a story in present tense ):

Gatsby is a mysterious character, he has big extravagant parties, and we never know if we can trust him.

The third paragraph is where we introduce the surprising moment and reveal what the main character did and why it was surprising:

  • The most shocking part is when…
  • I couldn’t believe it when…
  • It was so surprising when…

In the fourth paragraph, give a recommendation! Here the examiner wants to hear your overall opinion. It can be something simple:

  • I strongly recommend..

Or something more inventive:

  • I wouldn’t read the novel again because…
  • Everyone should read this immediately!

But don’t forget to say why!

Step Three: Check it

Now you have your winning book review it’s time to check for all those little (and big) mistakes.

Make sure you check:

  • You’ve answered all parts of the question.
  • It is easy to read.
  • Your spelling is correct.
  • You’ve used the 3rd person(s).
  • You have used punctuation.
  • There’s a variety of nouns and adjectives.
  • Pick a book you know quite well! Whether it’s Harry Potter or The Hunger Games , make sure you have lots to say about it!
  • Don’t be afraid to give both negative and positive opinions!
  • Experiment with using first person and try addressing the reader with ‘you’.
  • Read lots of real authentic reviews online, anything from holidays to music concerts, exhibitions to video games!
  • Remember to put some of your own personality into your review. Have some fun with it and good luck!

Follow the links for some excellent phrases and vocabulary for other types of reviews.

Restaurant Reviews

Film Reviews

TV / Theatre Reviews

Exhibition & Concert Reviews

Here are some more sample questions for you to practice on your own:

How to write a review - Example I - Cambridge B2 First | Oxford House Barcelona

Choose one and post your reviews in the comments section.

Glossary for Language Learners

Find the following words in the article and then write down any new ones you didn’t know.

Twist (n): : a sudden change in a story that you do not expect..

Chatty (adj): having a friendly style.

Avoid doing something (v): to intentionally not do something.

Terrific (adj): excellent.

Snappy (adj): concise.

Hook (v): to catch.

adj = adjective

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24 Christmas Phrases for Joyfu

‘Tis the season to be jolly, and what better way to get ready for the festive period than by learning some typical Chr... Read More

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3 Easy Ways To Use Music To Im

Are you ready to embark on your latest journey towards mastering the English language? We all know that music is there f... Read More

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Grammar Guide – Understandin

Do you sometimes feel a bit lost when deciding which tense to use? Are you a little unsure of the differences between th... Read More

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Halloween Humour: Jokes, Puns

We all need a break from time to time. Sometimes we’re up to our eyeballs in projects at work, and we just need a mome... Read More

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English for Business: 7 Ways L

If you’re interested in getting a promotion at work, earning a higher salary or landing your dream job, then working o... Read More

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A Beginner’s Guide to Ch

Understanding the need for exams   An official exam is a fantastic way to demonstrate your English. Why? Firstly,... Read More

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English Tongue Twisters to Imp

One of the most fun ways to practise and improve your pronunciation is with tongue twisters. That’s because they’re ... Read More

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25 years of Oxford House – O

We all know that fantastic feeling we have after completing an academic year: nine months of English classes, often twic... Read More

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Guide to the Cambridge C2 Prof

Are you working towards the Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) exam? Have you been having sleepless nights thinking about wh... Read More

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9 Tips For Communicating With

When travelling to or living in an English-speaking country, getting to know the local people can greatly enhance your e... Read More

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Are you preparing for the Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) writing exam? If those pre-exam jitters have started to appear,... Read More

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English Vocabulary For Getting

Are you feeling bored of the way your hair looks? Perhaps it’s time for a new you. All you need to do is make an appoi... Read More

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5 Spelling Rules For Comparati

Messi or Ronaldo? Pizza or sushi? Going to the cinema or bingeing on a series at home? A beach holiday or a walking trip... Read More

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Are you preparing for the Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) writing exam? If so, you may be feeling a little nervous and co... Read More

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Improve your English pronuncia

What are some of the trickiest words to pronounce in English? Well, we’ve compiled a useful list of ten of the most di... Read More

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Using Language Reactor To Lear

If you love watching Netflix series and videos on YouTube to learn English, then you need to download the Language React... Read More

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Are you preparing for the Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) exam? Would you like to know some tips to help you feel more at... Read More

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How to use ChatGPT to practise

Are you on the lookout for an extra way to practise your English? Do you wish you had an expert available at 2 a.m. that... Read More

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Well done. You’ve been moving along your English language journey for some time now. You remember the days of telling ... Read More

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Tips for the IELTS listening s

Are you preparing for the IELTS exam and need some help with the listening section? If so, then you’ll know that the l... Read More

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7 new English words to improve

A new year is a perfect opportunity to focus on your language goals. Maybe you are working towards an official exam. Per... Read More

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How to Write a C1 Advanced Ema

Did you know that there are two parts to the C1 Advanced Writing exam? Part 1 is always a mandatory . Part 2 has ... Read More

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5 Interesting Christmas tradit

When you think of the word Christmas, what springs to mind? For most people, it will be words like home, family and trad... Read More

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How to write a C1 Advanced Rep

Are you preparing for the Cambridge C1 Advanced exam and need a hand with writing your report/proposal for Part 2 of the... Read More

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5 of the best apps to improve

Would you like to improve your English listening skills? With all the technology that we have at our fingertips nowadays... Read More

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Tips for the IELTS Reading sec

Looking for some tips to get a high band score in the IELTS Academic Reading exam? If so, then you’re in the right pla... Read More

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The 5 best Halloween movies to

Boo! Are you a fan of Halloween? It’s that scary time of year again when the creepy creatures come out to play, and th... Read More

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How to Write a Review for Camb

Are you planning to take the Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) exam? If so, you will need to complete two pieces of writin... Read More

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How To Use Relative Pronouns i

Today we’re taking a look at some English grammar that sometimes trips up language learners. In fact, we’ve just use... Read More

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How To Get Top Marks: Cambridg

So you’re taking the ? If so, you’ll know that you have four sections to prepare for: speaking, reading and use of E... Read More

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Travel Vocabulary To Get Your

Summer is here and we can’t wait to go on our summer holidays! If you’re thinking about travelling overseas this yea... Read More

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How To Get A High Score In The

So you’re preparing for the ! From wanting to live and work abroad to going to university in an English-speaking count... Read More

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10 English Idioms To Take To T

Is there anything better than cooling off in the sea on a hot summer’s day? Well, if you live in Barcelona you hav... Read More

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Tips for IELTS speaking sectio

Are you preparing for the IELTS test? If so, you’ll need to do the speaking section. While many people find speaking t... Read More

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How to use 6 different English

Just when you think English couldn’t get any more confusing, we introduce you to English pronouns! The reason why peop... Read More

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How to get top marks: B2 First

Congratulations – you’ve made it to the B2 First Reading and Use of English Part 7! Yet, before we get too excited, ... Read More

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5 Of The Best Apps For Improvi

Speaking is often thought to be the hardest skill to master when learning English. What’s more, there are hundreds of ... Read More

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Do you like putting together puzzles? If so, your problem solving skills can actually help you with B2 First Reading and... Read More

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8 Vocabulary Mistakes Spanish

If you ask a Spanish speaker what they find difficult about English language learning, they may mention false friends an... Read More

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How To Get Top Marks: B2 First

Picture this: You’re in your B2 First exam and you’ve finished the Use of English part. You can put it behind you fo... Read More

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12 Business Phrasal Verbs to K

Want to improve your English for professional reasons? You’re in the right place. When working in English, it’s comm... Read More

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How to use articles (a, an, th

Knowing what articles are and when to use them in English can be difficult for language learners to pick up. Especially ... Read More

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Are you preparing for ? Reading and Use of English Part 4 may not be your cup of tea – in fact most students feel quit... Read More

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Passing B2 First Part 3: Readi

Are you studying for the B2 First exam? You’re in the right place! In this series of blogs we want to show you al... Read More

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8 new English words you need f

New words spring up each year! They often come from popular culture, social and political issues, and innovations in tec... Read More

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7 of the Best Apps for Learnin

If you find yourself commuting often and spending a lot of time on the bus, you’ll most likely turn towards playing ga... Read More

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The B2 First is one of the most popular English exams for students of English. It is a recognised qualification that can... Read More

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4 Different Types Of Modal Ver

What are modal verbs? They are not quite the same as regular verbs such as play, walk and swim. Modal verbs are a type o... Read More

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So you’ve decided to take the ! Formerly known as FCE or the First Certificate, this is by far most popular exam. Whe... Read More

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Useful Expressions For Negotia

A lot of our global business is conducted in English. So, there’s a strong chance you may have to learn how to negotia... Read More

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Passing C1 Advanced Part 8: Re

If you’re wondering how to do Part 8 of the Reading and Use of English paper, you’re in the right place! After s... Read More

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The Difference Between IELTS G

You’ve probably heard of . It’s the world’s leading test for study, work and migration after all. And as the world... Read More

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Passing C1 Advanced Part 7: Re

Welcome to Part 7 of the Reading and Use of English paper. This task is a bit like a jigsaw puzzle. One where you have ... Read More

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The Benefits Of Learning Engli

Who said learning English was just for the young? You're never too old to learn something new. There are plenty of benef... Read More

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So, you’re preparing to take the . You’ve been studying for each of the four sections; reading, writing, speaking an... Read More

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6 Reels Accounts to Learn Engl

Are you looking for ways to learn English during the summer holidays? We’ve got you covered – Instagram Reels is a n... Read More

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Passing Cambridge C1 Advanced

Well done you! You’ve made it to Part 6 of the Reading and Use of English exam. Not long to go now – just three mor... Read More

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8 Resources To Help Beginner E

Learning a new language is hard, but fun. If you are learning English but need some help, our monthly course is what y... Read More

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5 Famous Speeches To Help you

Everyone likes listening to inspiring speeches. Gifted speakers have a way of making people want to listen and take acti... Read More

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How To Write A B2 First Formal

Dear reader… We sincerely hope you enjoyed our previous blog posts about the Writing section of the B2 First. As promi... Read More

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4 Conditionals In English And

Conditionals? Is that something you use after shampooing your hair? Not quite. You may have heard your English teacher t... Read More

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After racing through the first four parts of the Cambridge English Reading and Use of English paper, you’ve managed t... Read More

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7 Of The Best Apps For Learnin

There are roughly 170,000 words in use in the English language. Thankfully, most native English speakers only have a voc... Read More

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How to write a B2 First inform

You're probably very familiar with sending emails (and sometimes letters) in your first language. But how about in Engli... Read More

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How can I teach my kids Englis

Keep kids’ minds sharp over the Easter holidays with some entertaining, educational activities in English. There are l... Read More

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How Roxana went from Beginner

Roxana Milanes is twenty five and from Cuba. She began English classes back in May 2019 at Oxford House, and since then ... Read More

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4 Future Tenses In English And

“Your future is whatever you make it, so make it a good one.” - Doc Brown, Back to the future. Just like the and... Read More

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10 Business Idioms For The Wor

Business idioms are used throughout the workplace. In meetings, conversations and even whilst making at the coffee mac... Read More

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5 Tips For Reading The News In

We spend hours consuming the news. With one click of a button we have access to thousands of news stories all on our pho... Read More

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How To Write a Report: Cambrid

Imagine the scene. It’s exam day. You’re nearly at the end of your . You’ve just finished writing Part 1 - , and n... Read More

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8 English Words You Need For 2

Back in December 2019, we sat down and attempted to make a list of . No one could have predicted the year that was about... Read More

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5 Christmas Movies On Netflix

Christmas movies are one of the best things about the holiday season. They’re fun, they get you in the mood for the ho... Read More

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MigraCode: An Inspiring New Pa

Oxford House are extremely proud to announce our partnership with MigraCode - a Barcelona-based charity which trains ref... Read More

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The Ultimate Guide To Video Co

The age of telecommunication is well and truly here. Most of our business meetings now take place via video conferencing... Read More

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6 Pronunciation Mistakes Spani

One of the biggest challenges for Spanish speakers when learning English is pronunciation. Often it’s a struggle to pr... Read More

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6 Ways You Can Learn English w

“Alexa, what exactly are you?” Alexa is a virtual AI assistant owned by Amazon. She is voice-activated - like Sir... Read More

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Passing Cambridge C1 Advanced:

Okay, take a deep breath. We’re about to enter the danger zone of the Cambridge exam - Reading and Use of English Par... Read More

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What’s new at Oxford House f

Welcome to the new school year! It’s great to have you back. We’d like to remind you that , and classes are all st... Read More

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European Languages Day: Where

The 26th of September is . It’s a day to celebrate Europe’s rich linguistic diversity and show the importance of lan... Read More

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Back To School: 9 Tips For Lan

It’s the start of a new academic term and new courses are about to begin. This is the perfect opportunity to set your ... Read More

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How to Maximise Your Online Co

If there’s one good thing to come out of this year, it’s that learning a language has never been so easy or accessib... Read More

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How To Learn English With TikT

Are you bored of Facebook? Tired of Instagram? Don’t feel part of the Twitter generation? Perhaps what you’re lookin... Read More

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A Brief Guide To Different Bri

It’s a fact! The UK is obsessed with the way people talk. And with , it’s no surprise why. That’s right, accents a... Read More

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Study English This Summer At O

Summer is here! And more than ever, we’re in need of a bit of sunshine. But with travel restrictions still in place, m... Read More

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5 Reasons To Learn English Out

As Barcelona and the rest of Spain enters the ‘new normality’, it’s time to plan ahead for the summer. Kids and te... Read More

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5 Free Online Resources For Ca

Are you preparing for a Cambridge English qualification? Have you devoured all of your past papers and need some extra e... Read More

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6 Different Uses Of The Word �

The word ‘get’ is one of the most common and versatile verbs in English. It can be used in lots of different ways, a... Read More

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What Are The 4 Present Tenses

There are three main verb tenses in English - , the present and the future - which each have various forms and uses. Tod... Read More

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5 Of The Best Netflix Series T

On average, Netflix subscribers spend streaming their favourite content. With so many binge-worthy series out there, it... Read More

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Continue Studying Online At Ox

Due to the ongoing emergency lockdown measures imposed by the Spanish Government . We don’t know when we will be a... Read More

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Five Ways To celebrate Sant Jo

The feast of Sant Jordi is one of Barcelona’s most popular and enduring celebrations. Sant Jordi is the patron saint o... Read More

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What’s It Like To Study Onli

Educational institutions all over the world have shut their doors. From nurseries to universities, business schools to l... Read More

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6 Benefits of Learning English

Whatever your new year’s resolution was this year, it probably didn’t involve staying at home all day. For many of u... Read More

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9 Tips For Studying A Language

With the recent outbreak of Covid-19, many of us may have to gather our books and study from home. Schools are clos... Read More

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10 Ways To Learn English At Ho

Being stuck inside can make you feel like you’re going crazy. But why not use this time to your advantage, and work on... Read More

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Important Information –

Dear students, Due to the recent emergency measures from the Government concerning COVID-19, Oxford House premises wi... Read More

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7 Books You Should Read To Imp

Reading is one of the best ways to practice English. It’s fun, relaxing and helps you improve your comprehension skill... Read More

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Your Guide To Moving To The US

So that’s it! It’s decided, you’re moving to the USA. It’s time to hike the soaring mountains, listen to country... Read More

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How to write a C1 Advanced Ess

The is an excellent qualification to aim for if you’re thinking of studying or working abroad. It’s recognised by u... Read More

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Small Talk For Business Englis

Like it or not, small talk is an important part of business. Whether it’s in a lift, at a conference, in a meeting roo... Read More

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English Vocabulary For Going O

It’s time for that famous celebration of love and romance - Valentine’s Day! It is inspired by the sad story of Sain... Read More

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IELTS: Writing Part 2 –

When it comes to exams, preparation is the key to success - and the IELTS Writing Paper Part 2 is no exception! It is wo... Read More

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5 Unmissable Events at Oxford

At Oxford House, we know learning a language extends beyond the classroom. It’s important to practise your skills in m... Read More

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Am I ready for the C1 Advanced

Congratulations! You’ve passed your Cambridge B2 First exam. It was a hard road but you did it. Now what’s next? Som... Read More

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Everything You Need To Know Ab

Ireland is known as the Emerald Isle. When you see its lush green landscape and breathtaking views, it’s easy to see w... Read More

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How SMART Goals Can Help You I

New year, new you. As one year ends and another begins, many of us like to set ourselves goals in order to make our live... Read More

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15 New English Words You Need

Each year new words enter the English language. Some are added to dictionaries like . Others are old words that are give... Read More

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Our Year In Review: Top 10 Blo

2019 went by in a flash - and what a year it’s been! We’re just as excited to be looking back on the past 12 months ... Read More

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Telephone Interviews In Englis

Telephone interviews in English can seem scary. Employers often use them to filter-out candidates before the face-to-fa... Read More

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How to Write a Great Article i

Writing in your only language can be a challenge, but writing in another language can be a complete nightmare ! Where do... Read More

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A Black Friday Guide to Shoppi

Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving. Traditionally, it signals the start of the Christmas shopping period. Expect... Read More

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Passing C1 Advanced: Part 3 Re

The (CAE) is a high-level qualification, designed to show that candidates are confident and flexible language users who... Read More

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AI Translators: The Future Of

Many people believe that artificial intelligence (AI) translators are surpassing human translators in their ability to a... Read More

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8 Of The Best Apps For Learnin

Apps are a great tool for learning English. They are quick, easy to access and fun. It’s almost like having a mini cla... Read More

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6 Ways To Improve Your Speakin

There are four linguistic skills that you utilise when learning a new language: reading, writing speaking and listening.... Read More

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Passing Cambridge C2 Proficien

So, you’ve moved onto Part 3, and after completing Part 2 it’s probably a welcome relief to be given some help with ... Read More

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8 Resources To Build Your Busi

Whether it’s in meetings, telephone conversations or networking events, you’ll find specific vocabulary and buzzword... Read More

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5 Ways to Become a Better Lear

It’s time for some back-to-school motivation. The new school year is about to start and everyone is feeling refreshed ... Read More

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Our 10 Favourite YouTubers To

Haven’t you heard? Nobody is watching the TV anymore - 2019 is the year of the YouTuber! If you’re an English langu... Read More

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So, you’ve completed the of your Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE). Now it’s time to sit back and enjoy the rest of the e... Read More

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The Secret French Words Hidden

“The problem with the French is that they have no word for entrepreneur.” This phrase was attributed to George W. B... Read More

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The Ultimate Guide To Gràcia

The Gràcia Festival, or , is an annual celebration taking place in the lovely, bohemian neighbourhood of Gràcia in upt... Read More

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5 Things To Do In Barcelona In

Barcelona residents will often tell you than nothing happens in August. It’s too hot and everyone escapes to little vi... Read More

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4 Past Tenses and When to Use

Do you have difficulty with the past tenses in English? Do you know the difference between the past simple and past perf... Read More

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8 Hidden Benefits of Being Bil

Unless you were raised to be bilingual, speaking two languages can require years of study and hard work. Even once you�... Read More

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7 Films to Practise Your Engli

What’s better than watching a fantastic, original-language movie in a theatre? Watching a fantastic, original-language... Read More

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The 10 Best Instagram Accounts

Ever wonder how much time you spend on your phone a day? According to the latest studies, the average person spends on ... Read More

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Challenge Yourself This Summer

Here comes the sun! That’s right, summer is on its way and, for many, that means a chance to take a well-deserved brea... Read More

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You’ve done the hard part and finally registered for your , congratulations! Now all you need to do is pass it! H... Read More

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These 5 Soft Skills Will Boost

Everyone is talking about soft skills. They are the personal traits that allow you to be mentally elastic, to adapt to n... Read More

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Which English Exam Is Right Fo

Are you struggling to decide which English language exam to take? You’re not alone: with so many different options on ... Read More

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Passing C2 Proficiency: A Guid

We’re sure you’ve done a great job answering the questions for of your . But now you’re faced with a completely d... Read More

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Sant Jordi – Dragons, Bo

Imagine you have woken up in Barcelona for the first time in your life. You walk outside and you notice something unusua... Read More

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5 Ways To Improve Your Listeni

Have you ever put on an English radio station or podcast and gone to sleep, hoping that when you wake up in the morning ... Read More

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The Simple Guide To Communicat

What’s the most challenging thing about going on holiday in an English speaking country? Twenty years ago you might ha... Read More

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Stop Making These 7 Grammar Mi

No matter how long you've been learning a language, you're likely to make a mistake every once in a while. The big ones ... Read More

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How To Pass Your First Job Int

Passing a job interview in a language that’s not your mother tongue is always a challenge – but however daunting i... Read More

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5 Ways To Practise Your Speaki

“How many languages do you speak?” This is what we ask when we want to know about someone’s language skills... Read More

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You have survived the Use of English section of your , but now you are faced with a long text full of strange language, ... Read More

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Improve Your English Accent Wi

Turn on a radio anywhere in the world and it won’t take long before you’re listening to an English song. And, if you... Read More

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10 English Expressions To Fall

It’s nearly Valentine’s day and love is in the air at Oxford House. We’ll soon be surrounded by heart-shaped ballo... Read More

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7 Graded Readers To Help You P

Graded readers are adaptations of famous stories, or original books aimed at language learners. They are written to help... Read More

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6 Tools To Take Your Writing T

Written language is as important today as it has ever been. Whether you want to prepare for an , to respond to or it’... Read More

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EF Report: Do Spanish Schools

The new year is here and many of us will be making promises about improving our language skills in 2019. However, how ma... Read More

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Our 10 Most Popular Blog Posts

It’s been a whirlwind 2018. We’ve made so many amazing memories - from our twentieth-anniversary party to some enter... Read More

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Time For A Career Change? Here

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to get a job in an international company? Perhaps you’ve thought about tr... Read More

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Eaquals Accreditation: A Big S

We are delighted to be going through the final stages of our accreditation, which will help us provide the best languag... Read More

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A Guide To The Cambridge Engli

Making the decision to do a Cambridge English language qualification can be intimidating. Whether you’re taking it bec... Read More

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8 Top Tips To Get The Most Out

A language exchange (or Intercambio in Spanish) is an excellent way to practise English outside of the classroom. The a... Read More

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The Haunted History And Terrib

The nights are drawing in and the leaves are falling from the trees. As our minds turn to the cold and frosty winter nig... Read More

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Why Oxford House Is More Than

If you’re a student at , you’ll know it is far more than just a language academy. It’s a place to socialise, make ... Read More

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10 Crazy Things You Probably D

From funny bananas, super long words and excitable foxes, our latest infographic explores 10 intriguing facts about the ... Read More

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Meet our Director of Studies &

If you’ve been studying at Oxford House for a while there’s a good chance that you’ll recognise Judy - with her bi... Read More

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Which English Course Is Right

The new school year is about to begin and many of you are probably thinking that it’s about time to take the plunge an... Read More

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5 Ways To Get Over The Holiday

We head off on vacation full of excitement and joy. It’s a time to explore somewhere new, relax and spend time with ou... Read More

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10 Essential Aussie Expression

Learning English is difficult! With its irregular verbs, tricky pronunciation and even harder spelling, lots of students... Read More

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5 Great Apps To Give Your Engl

The next time you’re walking down the street, in a waiting room, or on public transport in Barcelona take a look aroun... Read More

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Here’s Why You Should Move T

Many students have aspirations to move abroad. This might be for a number of reasons such as to find a new job, to impro... Read More

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Improving Your Pronunciation W

What do English, Maori, Vietnamese and Zulu have in common? Along with another , they all use the . If your first la... Read More

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How To Improve Your English Us

Netflix has changed the way we spend our free time. We don’t have to wait a week for a new episode of our favourite TV... Read More

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Oxford House Community: Meet O

The year has flown by and we are already into the second week of our summer intensive courses. Today we look back at th... Read More

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6 Amazing Events to Make It an

Things are hotting up in Barcelona. There’s so much to see and do during the summer months that it’s hard to know wh... Read More

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How to Improve Your English Ov

The long summer holiday is almost here and we’ve got some top tips on how you can keep up your English over the summer... Read More

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World Cup Vocabulary: Let’s

Football, football, football: the whole world is going crazy for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar! The beautiful game i... Read More

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The 10 Characteristics Of A �

Learning a second language has a lot in common with learning to play an instrument or sport. They all require frequent p... Read More

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Catch Your Child’s Imaginati

Imagine, for a moment, taking a cooking class in a language you didn’t know - it could be Japanese, Greek, Russian. It... Read More

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Exam Day Tips: The Written Pap

Exams are nerve-wracking. Between going to class, studying at home and worrying about the results, it’s easy to forget... Read More

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10 Reasons to Study English at

Learning a second language, for many people, is one of the best decisions they ever make. Travel, work, culture, educati... Read More

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Shadowing: A New Way to Improv

Speech shadowing is an advanced language learning technique. The idea is simple: you listen to someone speaking and you ... Read More

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The Best Websites to Help Your

Our children learn English at school from a young age - with some even starting basic language classes from as early as ... Read More

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15 Useful English Expressions

When was the last time you painted the town red or saw a flying pig? We wouldn’t be surprised if you are scratchin... Read More

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Help Your Teens Practise Engli

Teenagers today are definitely part of the smartphone generation and many parents are concerned about the amount of time... Read More

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IELTS: Writing Part 1 –

Are you taking an IELTS exam soon? Feeling nervous about the writing paper? Read this article for some top tips and usef... Read More

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Business skills: How to delive

Love them or hate them, at some point we all have to give a business presentation. Occasionally we have to deliver them ... Read More

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10 phrasal verbs to help you b

A lot of students think English is easy to learn - that is until they encounter phrasal verbs! We are sure you have hear... Read More

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6 Unbelievably British Easter

Have you heard of these fascinating British Easter traditions? Great Britain is an ancient island, full of superstition... Read More

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Guide to getting top marks in

Your is coming to an end and exam day is fast approaching. It’s about time to make sure you are prepared for what man... Read More

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4 Ways English Words are Born

Have you ever wondered where English words come from? There are a whopping 171,476 words in the . From aardvark to zyzz... Read More

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Writing an effective essay: Ca

Students take language certifications like the Cambridge B2 First qualification for lots of different reasons. You might... Read More

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5 Powerful Tools to Perfect Yo

Foreign accent and understanding When you meet someone new, what’s the first thing you notice? Is it how they look?... Read More

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Essential Ski Vocabulary [Info

Are you a ski-fanatic that spends all week dreaming about white-capped peaks, fluffy snow and hearty mountain food? ... Read More

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Critiquing Cinema: A Closer Look at Movie Review Titles

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  • October 1, 2023

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Introduction

In the world of cinema, movie reviews play a vital role in guiding audiences towards the films that interest them. A well-written review not only provides an evaluation of a film but also offers insights into its various aspects, such as the plot, acting, and cinematography. However, often overlooked yet essential, are the movie review titles. The title of a review plays a significant role in capturing the reader’s attention, setting expectations, and revealing the critic’s perspective. In this article, we will take a closer look at the importance of movie review titles and explore how they can influence readers’ perceptions.

The Power of a Movie Review Title

The movie review title acts as the first point of contact between the critic and the reader. A compelling title not only grabs the reader’s attention but also sets the tone for the review. Film critics understand the significance of an engaging title in capturing the interest of potential readers. A well-crafted title can pique curiosity, evoke emotions, or offer a hint of the critic’s opinion, ultimately influencing the reader’s decision to click and read the entire review.

Elements of an Effective Movie Review Title

An effective movie review title should be concise, informative, and intriguing. Clarity is crucial to ensure that the reader understands the film being reviewed. Including the film’s title in the review title may help in achieving this clarity. For example, “The Dark Knight: A Masterful Blend of Action and Drama.” This title clearly indicates that the review is about the movie “The Dark Knight” while also hinting at its genre and quality.

Additionally, a good movie review title offers a unique perspective or promises a particular angle of analysis. Titles that stand out from the generic “Movie Review: [Film Title]” format are more likely to attract readers. For instance, “Unveiling the Enigmatic Symbolism in ‘Inception'” offers an intriguing look at the film’s hidden meanings, generating curiosity among potential readers.

A well-crafted movie review title should also aim to reflect the critic’s opinion subtly. While IT may not explicitly reveal whether the film is praised or criticized, IT can offer a glimpse into the overall tone or approach of the review. Review titles such as “An Unforgettable Journey through ‘Interstellar'” or “Lost Potential in ‘The Great Gatsby'” provide readers with a sense of the critic’s perspective, creating anticipation and setting expectations for the review itself.

The Impact on Reader Perception

Movie review titles significantly influence how readers perceive a film before even reading the review. An attention-grabbing title can raise anticipation or generate excitement, building positive expectations for the movie. On the other hand, a negative or critical title may create skepticism or apprehension. The reader’s perception of the film can already be shaped by the title, and this can influence their overall experience and enjoyment of the movie, even before watching IT .

Moreover, movie review titles can also affect the reader’s interpretation of the review itself. If the title sets expectations for a positive or negative evaluation, readers may subconsciously seek supporting arguments that align with their preconceived notions. This can lead to confirmation bias and may hinder a fair evaluation of the film’s merits or flaws. Therefore, IT is crucial for movie reviewers to strike a balance in their titles, offering a hint of their opinion without overly influencing the reader.

Movie review titles play a crucial role in capturing readers’ attention and influencing their perception of a film. An effective title should be concise, informative, and intriguing, while subtly indicating the critic’s perspective. By consciously crafting engaging review titles, critics can enhance the reader’s experience and contribute to a more comprehensive and unbiased evaluation of a film.

Q: How long should a movie review title be?

A: Movie review titles should be concise and to the point. Aim for around 5-10 words to capture the reader’s attention without being too lengthy.

Q: Should the movie title be included in the review title?

A: Including the movie title in the review title helps create clarity and informs the reader about the specific film being reviewed.

Q: Can movie review titles reveal the critic’s opinion?

A: Yes, movie review titles can subtly hint at the critic’s opinion, providing readers with a sense of the overall tone or approach of the review.

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‘The Adamant Girl’ Review: P.S. Vinothraj Delivers a Radical Exploration of Gendered Traditions

Indian director P.S. Vinothraj returns with another stunning social drama.

By Siddhant Adlakha

Siddhant Adlakha

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The Adamant Girl

Vinothraj sets the stage by following his characters in lengthy, unbroken shots, observing their movement — or lack thereof, in some cases. He creates a sense of mood and texture around them even before they speak as he tracks them from behind. His central character, Meena (Anna Ben), remains still and silent for most of the film, as though she were in a fugue state, while her brusque fiancé, Pandi (Soori Muthuchamy), gurgles imposing dialogue despite his painfully hoarse voice. Meena chooses to be silent. Pandi insists on being heard.

Pandi, his parents and his two wedded sisters believe Meena’s reluctance to marry him is rooted in some kind of spiritual possession. The exact circumstances of her refusal aren’t specified up front, though they have caste-centric implications when revealed. Vinothraj, in his exploration of gender, tosses a wide net over rural Indian society, analyzing numerous different family dynamics, including that of Meena’s own parents, who bite their tongues and go along with their in-laws’ planned exorcism scheme.

The plot is simple on its surface. Pandi’s family seeks to take Meena to a holy site for a prayer offering, followed by another trip immediately after to a revered, shamanic “seer” for whom they bring a sacrificial rooster. Although Meena doesn’t speak — in fact, she makes an effort to barely emote or react — Vinothraj’s unyielding focus on her eyes and her subtle reactions creates a world of interiority, which few of the characters in her vicinity choose to see. The camera goes where society’s general consciousness, and its moral compass, do not.

Vinothraj depicts both the sudden intimacy of violence within the family unit as well as its futility from afar, highlighting male impotence rather than dominance. Each sequence is carefully crafted, but it emerges as though it has a mind of its own. The camera goes to great lengths to capture physical and emotional spaces that seem to exist only in private, within Meena’s fantasies of freedom and reprieve. The film’s focus on ritual is often tongue-in-cheek, from extended sequences of actual traditions geared toward forcing Meena to marry Pandi, to more mechanical goings-on, like the repetitive tradition of rope-starting the rickety rickshaw. Like all traditions, it’s one that works until it won’t.

Through Meena’s gaze, Vinothraj also captures a dynamic view of water and other liquids — a recurring visual motif that binds the film — from plastic water bottles used to refill the bikes with petrol, to bodies of water roaming free, to water used within the aforementioned rituals, and even used forcefully to wake the rooster when it seemingly passes out from the heat. Liquid is fluid; its meaning is pliable, even when applied to the rigidity of ritual. It takes different shapes, while Meena is forced to fit a singular box. None of these thoughts are expressed in words, but thanks to Ben’s impeccable performance, Meena brings even these complex ideas to life through her silent despondency and her yearning for human decency.

The wry humor of “The Adamant Girl” goes hand in hand with its unflinching depictions of masculine insecurity and its harmful outcomes. The film is as funny as it is unsettling, but it’s ultimately liberating, albeit in roundabout ways. It builds to a stunning climax in which nothing out of the ordinary happens, but the mundane, the familiar and the wholly expected are subverted aesthetically. The camera, in this moment, suddenly embodies the very feelings of paralyzing entrapment it has been so carefully observing thus far. It’s a jolt to the system.

Reviewed at Berlin Film Festival (Forum), Feb. 16, 2024. Running time: 100 MIN. (Original title: “Kottukkaali”)

  • Production: (India) A Sivakarthikeyan Prods. production. Produced by: Sivakarthikeyan D., Kalai Arasu P.
  • Crew: Director, writer: P.S. Vinothraj. Camera: B. Sakthi Vel. Editor: Ganesh Siva.
  • With: Soori Muthuchamy, Anna Ben. (Tamil dialogue)

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Mat Classic 35: University’s Libby Roberts moves one step closer to perfection with third state title

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TACOMA – Three down, one to go.

That’s all University standout Libby Roberts has left to reach her goal of becoming a four-time Mat Classic champion after she again ran through the 105-pound bracket Saturday at the Tacoma Dome.

“Seeing all that hard work in the room and then taking it out here and having it pay off just means so much,” Roberts said. “It’s awesome to pin my way through a state tournament, and now I’m tied with my brother with three titles and I’ve got a chance to pass him.”

Roberts capped another perfect run through her girls 4A/3A bracket with a 50-second pin of Sumner’s Bailee Wagner in the title match.

Roberts, a junior, finished this year’s tournament with four pins in four matches, bringing her Mat Classic career total to 11 pins and one major decision in 12 victories.

“It would mean a lot to me if I was able to capture that fourth title,” Roberts said. “I watched girl wrestlers growing up and I wanted to be like them. And if I was able to add the title of four-timer next to my name it might inspire younger girls to follow in my footsteps.”

Roberts is just one title away entering rarefied air as a four-time champion.

That goal has always been a priority for her, even as she spends more time wrestling in larger regional and national tournaments. This year alone she won at Briaded 64 in Kelso, Washington, the Hellgate Invitational in Montana and the prestigious Walsh Ironman in Ohio. She also had a fourth-place finish this summer at the USMC Women‘s National Championship at the Podium.

“Mat Classic will always hold a special place in my heart,” she said. “Looking at all the national stuff, when I’m here this is the most important tournament. And now I can move onto the next one.

“But state will always mean a lot to me.”

In the year between now and her shot at history, Roberts said the focus and skill only need to keep getting better.

“Just keep grinding like I have been,” Roberts said. “There is always room to get better.”

• In the 2A/1A/2B/1B girls tournament, Newport senior Madisen Pillers fell in the 235-pound title match to Omak’s Kiona Michel with a second-period pin.

Bogle brings title home to Deer Park

Liam Bogle capped off a strong weekend for Deer Park with a title at 165 pounds in the 1A tournament.

Bogle, a senior, topped Northeast A League rival Jonah Orndorff of Freeman 6-0 in the championship tilt.

“Wrestling has been my second home since I was a little kid,” Bogle said. “I’ve looked up at that wall and the champions everyday since I was a little kid saying I want to be up there.”

The Staggs also had a second-place finisher in Gavin Carnahan at 132. In total, Deer Park finished with five wrestlers on the podium and 82 team points – good enough for fifth place.

The Lakeside duo of Konnor Spradling (106) and Myles Christen (144) also made it to the championship round, but ended up earning second-place finishes.

Davenports’s Gustaveson avenges loss to win title

Last year, Davenport’s Brock Gustaveson was knocked out of his first Mat Classic on the opening day by Pomeroy’s Curtis Winona.

Fast forward a year and this time Gustaveson was the one who came out on top – with much higher stakes.

Gustaveson, a sophomore for the Gorillas, earned his first state title with a second-period pin of his regional rival.

“I spent all summer grinding and getting better, and it’s just so fulfilling to see all that hard work pay off,” Gustaveson said. “I try not to think about who I am wrestling and just go out and do my thing.

“I wrestled him a few times this year already, but I stuck to what got me here.”

In winning, Gustaveson becomes Davenport’s first state wrestling champion.

But he was not alone at the top of the small-school podium. Liberty Launch Academy freshman Caiden Kassel won at 113, Chewelah’s Jared Haden claimed the 157 prize and Lind-Ritzville’s Gabriel Smith won at 215 over league rival Noah Butler of Almira/Coulee-Hartline.

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Spy x Family Code: White

Banjô Ginga, Kazuhiro Yamaji, Hiroyuki Yoshino, Haruka Okamura, Tomoya Nakamura, Yûko Kaida, Emiri Kato, Kenshô Ono, Saori Hayami, Kento Kaku, Ken'ichirô Matsuda, Takuya Eguchi, Ayane Sakura, Atsumi Tanezaki, Shunsuke Takeuchi, Hana Sato, and Natsumi Fujiwara in Spy x Family Code: White (2023)

After receiving an order to be replaced in Operation Strix, Loid decides to help Anya win a cooking competition at Eden Academy by making the principal's favorite meal in order to prevent hi... Read all After receiving an order to be replaced in Operation Strix, Loid decides to help Anya win a cooking competition at Eden Academy by making the principal's favorite meal in order to prevent his replacement. After receiving an order to be replaced in Operation Strix, Loid decides to help Anya win a cooking competition at Eden Academy by making the principal's favorite meal in order to prevent his replacement.

  • Kazuhiro Furuhashi
  • Ichirô Ôkouchi
  • Tatsuya Endo
  • Takuya Eguchi
  • Atsumi Tanezaki
  • Saori Hayami
  • 1 User review
  • 2 Critic reviews

Official Trailer 1

  • Loid Forger
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Saori Hayami

  • Bond Forger
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Yûko Kaida

  • Sylvia Sherwood
  • (as Yuko Kaida)
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Ayane Sakura

  • Fiona Frost
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Dani Chambers

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  • Dec 23, 2023
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  • April 19, 2024 (United States)
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  • Runtime 1 hour 50 minutes
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Banjô Ginga, Kazuhiro Yamaji, Hiroyuki Yoshino, Haruka Okamura, Tomoya Nakamura, Yûko Kaida, Emiri Kato, Kenshô Ono, Saori Hayami, Kento Kaku, Ken'ichirô Matsuda, Takuya Eguchi, Ayane Sakura, Atsumi Tanezaki, Shunsuke Takeuchi, Hana Sato, and Natsumi Fujiwara in Spy x Family Code: White (2023)

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  • UFC 298 fight card

UFC 298 live stream: How to watch Volkanovski vs. Topuria, Whittaker vs. Costa

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UFC 298's main card features an exciting featherweight title bout tonight, with Volkanovski vs. Topuria topping the bill at the Honda Center in Anaheim. Will the Australian be able to defend his title against the as-yes undefeated Georgian challenger? Whittaker vs. Costa doesn't have a belt on the line, but it's a worthy co-main for fight fans. Wherever you are in the world, we can show you how to watch a UFC 298 live stream from anywhere and will detail where to find the best PPV prices near you. 

  • More streaming:  Free Six Nations live stream  | NBA live stream | Free Love Island All Stars live stream | Free Bachelor live stream

As usual in the US, the main card's PPV livestream is exclusive to ESPN Plus members, but if you're outside the country, you can tap into a few international viewing options. We'll also guide you step-by-step on how to use a VPN to watch UFC 298, no matter where you are. You might even find that some international viewing options are cheaper than your home country, and a VPN is a great way to save on pricy PPV fees.

How to watch UFC 298 in the US

US viewers can watch the main event of UFC 298 on ESPN Plus tonight at 10 p.m. ET. The main card requires an ESPN Plus subscription ($10/month) and an extra pay-per-view fee of $80. Before the main event, fans can watch the prelims and early prelims starting at 8 p.m./6:30 p.m. ET using a $11 monthly ESPN Plus membership with no added fee (but not the main card bouts). 

The ESPN Plus app is available on all the best streaming devices , including Amazon Fire, Apple, Android, Chromecast, PlayStation, Xbox, Roku, Samsung smart TVs, and more. You can also watch via online browsers.

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ESPN+ members can order UFC pay-per-events for $79.99. You must be an ESPN+ subscriber ($10.99/month) to be eligible to order.

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ESPN+ is the home of UFC PPV events, meaning that fans need to purchase a subscription in addition to buying the one-off cards. ESPN is offering a bundle for both new subscribers and monthly subscribers to purchase a specific UFC PPV event along with a year-long subscription to the streaming service.

Ways to save on the UFC 298 PPV price

If you're not a member and plan to sign up for ESPN Plus to watch UFC 298, you can take advantage of a discounted package.

New subscribers can purchase a one-year ESPN Plus plan with access to UFC 298 included for $134.98. An annual subscription alone usually costs $110, so you're saving a tidy sum on the $80 PPV price with this option. ESPN Plus will renew at the regular annual fee of $110 after your first year unless you cancel. Or, as mentioned earlier, you could use a VPN to take advantage of cheaper prices outside of the US.

Where to watch UFC 298 everywhere else

If you're not in the US, you still have a few options to watch UFC 298. The fight is available to watch in the UK with TNT Sports, available as a £31 per month add-on for most major TV providers in the country (including BT, Discovery+, EE, Sky, and Virgin).

In the UK , these numbered UFC events are rarely locked behind an additional PPV paywall in addition to the usual subscription fee, which is fair given the main event is usually on super late. UFC 298 can be viewed as a part of a Discovery+ sub on TNT Sports (formerly BT Sport). It costs £31.99 a month for the required Premium tier (this also unlocks the Champions League, Moto GP, boxing, and more).

The Discovery Plus app is available on Android, iOS, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Samsung, LG, PlayStation, and Xbox. You can also stream it through any web browser. This UK app is the cheapest option by some distance when comparing international UFC 298 prices, and using a VPN is a great way to unlock it from overseas.

In Canada, UFC 298 will be available as a pay-per-view through most TV providers and directly via UFC Fight Pass . The pay-per-view costs $65.

The UFC 298 main event is available on UFC Fight Pass in most other regions, including Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland, Switzerland, Asia, Africa, and Brazil. Check local provider listings for other main event and prelim viewing options.

Even outside any of the above locations, you can still access the event no matter where you are with a VPN (virtual private network). These apps bypass geo-restrictions so you can stream UFC 298 through services carrying the fight without being in the US, UK, or Canada. A VPN also provides users with a more secure internet connection and protects your digital security by keeping your online activity private from your service provider and would-be snoopers. 

Our top recommendation for the best VPN service is ExpressVPN . New members can get a 30-day money-back guarantee, and your first year is 49% off, plus an extra three months thrown in free. If you'd like to learn more about the app, take a look at our detailed ExpressVPN review .

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With its consistent performance, reliable security, and expansive global streaming features, ExpressVPN is the best VPN out there, excelling in every spec and offering many advanced features that makes it exceptional. Better yet, you can save up to 49% and get an extra three months for free today.

How to watch UFC 298 with a VPN

  • Sign up for a VPN service like ExpressVPN .
  • Install it on the device you're using to watch UFC 298.
  • Activate the VPN and set it to the location of your chosen streaming service.
  • ESPN+ (USA) | Discovery Plus (UK) | Fight Pass (Canada)
  • Subscribe and pay the local PPV or subscription fee.
  • Watch the UFC 298 online.
  • When: Main card starts today at 10 p.m. ET / 3 a.m. GMT (Sun) / 11 a.m. AWST (Sun)

UFC 298 Fight Card : Volkanovski vs. Topuria

Main card - 10 p.m. et.

  • Alexander Volkanovski (C) vs. Ilia Topuria (featherweight title bout)
  • Robert Whittaker vs. Paulo Costa (middleweight bout)
  • Geoff Neal vs. Ian Machado Garry (welterweight bout)
  • Merab Dvalishvili vs. Henry Cejudo (bantamweight bout)
  • Anthony Hernandez vs. Roman Kopylov (middleweight bout)

Prelims - 8 p.m. ET

  • Amanda Lemos vs. Mackenzie Dern (strawweight bout)
  • Marcos Rogerio de Lima vs. Justin Tafa (heavyweight bout)
  • Rinya Nakamura vs. Carlos Vera (bantamweight bout)
  • Zhang Mingyang vs. Brendson Ribeiro (light heavyweight bout)

Early Prelims - 6 p.m. ET

  • Josh Quinlan vs. Danny Barlow (welterweight bout)
  • Val Woodburn vs. Oban Elliott (welterweight bout)
  • Andrea Lee vs. Miranda Maverick (flyweight bout)

Note:  Using VPNs is illegal in certain countries, and using VPNs to access region-locked streaming content might constitute a breach of the terms of use for certain services. Insider does not endorse or condone the illegal use of VPNs.

You can purchase logo and accolade licensing to this story here . Disclosure: Written and researched by the Insider Reviews team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we may get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our partners. We may receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at [email protected] .

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    A review article can also be called a literature review, or a review of literature. It is a survey of previously published research on a topic. It should give an overview of current thinking on the topic. And, unlike an original research article, it will not present new experimental results. Writing a review of literature is to provide a ...

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    Title Page - Include the full title, a 250-word abstract, and 4-6 keywords for discoverability. Introduction - Set the stage with an engaging overview of the article. Body - Organize your analysis with headings and subheadings. Works Cited/References - Properly cite all sources used in your review.

  10. How to write a review?

    Step 2: Title The review should start with the title, and there are few simple ways to write it: imagine you're reviewing a book you can write: [Title] by [Author]; if you were reviewing a restaurant you could write: [name of the restaurant] - a review; Title (book): Dark Souls by Stephen King (by) Title (restaurant): Taco Bell in London - a review (a review)

  11. How to Write a Book Review in 3 Steps

    Step 1. Provide a summary Have you ever watched a movie only to realize that all the good bits were already in the trailer? Well, you don't want the review to do that. What you do want the summary to do is reveal the genre, theme, main conflict, and main characters in the story — without giving away spoilers or revealing how the story ends.

  12. Writing a Literature Review

    A literature review is a document or section of a document that collects key sources on a topic and discusses those sources in conversation with each other (also called synthesis ). The lit review is an important genre in many disciplines, not just literature (i.e., the study of works of literature such as novels and plays).

  13. How to Write an Article Review: Types, Format, & Examples

    Article Review Outline. 1. Introduction. Introduce the article under review. Provide the article's title, author, and publication date. Briefly outline the main theme or purpose of the article. State your thesis or the main point you will be analyzing. 2. Summary. Summarize the article's main points, arguments, and key findings.

  14. How to write a review?

    1. Title + Introduction Name what you are going to be reviewing. Identify the book, restaurant or film 2. Main content: Paragraph Describe the first thing mentioned in the task Paragraph Describe the second thing mentioned in the task 3. Recommendation Contain your general impression and your verdict. FCE, CAE, CPE Practice, Write & Improve

  15. 6 tips for writing a great title for your research article

    A good title helps the reader quickly recognize whether this paper is relevant for them. The title should give the reader an accurate picture of the article — and motivate the *right* reader to go on and read the article. Additionally, an ideal title is memorable: researchers are reading many papers, some will be inevitably forgotten.

  16. How to write a book review: format guide, & examples

    Step 1: Planning Your Book Review - The Art of Getting Started You've decided to take the plunge and share your thoughts on a book that has captivated (or perhaps disappointed) you. Before you start book reviewing, let's take a step back and plan your approach.

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    A brief review might give the title, author, genre, some brief selling points of the novel, and then a pros and cons list. Some reviews also include a "verdict" at the end. An example of this format: The Tea Dragon Society by Katie O'Neill. 🌟 Fantasy All-Ages Comic

  18. 9 customer review examples + template for getting more reviews

    If you're spending the money, you're in control of the story. However, to get more reviews like the second, treat it the same as blog post reviews. Reach out to industry experts who have large YouTube followings and offer free trials or discounted products in exchange for an honest review. 8. User-generated content.

  19. How to Write an Article Review: Template & Examples

    An article review is an academic paper that summarizes and critically evaluates the information presented in your selected article. The first thing you should note when approaching the task of an article review is that not every article is suitable for this assignment.

  20. How To Write A Review: Cambridge B2 First

    (Feb 2018) Step One: Make a plan The first thing to do is to make a plan, just like we did in our B2 First essay guidelines. Think of a book you read in which the main character behaved in a surprising way. This could be surprising in a good way, where the character does something amazing and helps somebody.

  21. PDF A Practical Guide To Title Review

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