Chat with a Librarian
What is a Book Review
A book review describes and evaluates a book, and makes an argument. It is more of a commentary than just a simple summary. Both fiction and non-fiction books are reviewed. Book reviews are often published in newspapers, magazines, online, and in scholarly/peer reviewed journals. Book reviews for popular books are often published before the book is published or around the time that they become available. Reviews for more scholarly books often appear a year or two after the publication date.
- You can try the search box on the library home page or one of the library databases.
- Begin by conducting a search with the author and titles.
- Knowing the date of publication helps to narrow your search.
- Some databases will allow you to narrow to review or criticism.
Parts of a Book Review
- Most book reviews include the author, title, and year of publication
- Non-fiction book reviews often analyze the book, discuss major topics, and may include the author's credentials.
- Some reviews compare or contrast the book with other works on similar topics.
- The review may include omissions, biases, and/or additions to the field of study
Book Review Databases
- Book Review Digest Plus This link opens in a new windowMore than 938,000 full-text book reviews and nearly 2.2 million review citations to nearly every book review from more than 5,000 indexed journals. Extensive coverage of books for children and teens with a suggested grade range. More than 50,000 new reviews are added each year.
- Books in Print with Book Reviews This link opens in a new windowIndex to U.S. books in print, along with the full text of reviews from nine sources, including Library Journal, Publishers' Weekly, and Kirkus.
- Children's Literature Comprehensive Database (Firefox Browser Recommended) This link opens in a new windowReviews of PreK-12 media of all types, including more than 3 million titles and more than 50 professional review sources, and more than 850 national and international young adult and children's book awards, and thousands of regional, state, and national best books lists.
- Choice Reviews Online This link opens in a new windowPremier review journal of new academic titles. Offers 600 new reviews every month, identifying the best new books and digital content in academia.
- Google Scholar This link opens in a new windowA freely accessible web search engine that indexes the full text or metadata of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines.
- Literature Criticism Online This link opens in a new windowMaxwell Library has access to the following journals: Children's Literature, Review, Contemporary Literary Criticism, Drama Criticism, Poetry Criticism, and Short Story Criticism. This collection represents a range of modern and historical views on authors and their works across regions, eras and genres.
Additional Sources of Book Reviews
- Gale Academic OneFile This link opens in a new windowThe premier source for peer-reviewed, full-text articles for academic libraries from the world's leading journals, this comprehensive resource covers the physical and social sciences, medicine, engineering, the arts, technology, literature, and many other subjects. With millions of articles in both PDF and HTML full-text format and simultaneous, unlimited usage, researchers are able to find accurate, timely information quickly. Gale's InterLink technology intelligently connects contextually-relevant results from your library's eBook collection on GVRL within articles in a user's search results. The Topic Finder tool adds power and depth to searches, allowing students to mine their search results and develop their research focus in ways never before available.
- Academic Search Complete This link opens in a new windowMulti-disciplinary full-text database with more than 8,500 full-text periodicals, including more than 7,300 peer-reviewed journals. Indexes and abstracts more than 12,500 journals and a total of more than 13,200 publications including monographs, reports, and conference proceedings. Searchable cited references are provided for more than 1,400 journals.
- America: History and Life (with Full Text) This link opens in a new windowFull text coverage of the history and culture of the United States and Canada from prehistory to the present. Includes nearly 200 journals and 100 books, selective indexing for over 1,700 journals, and abstracts in English of foreign language articles.
- Historical New York Times (ProQuest News & Newspapers) This link opens in a new windowProvides genealogists, researchers and scholars with online, easily-searchable first-hand accounts and unparalleled coverage of the politics, society and events of the time, covering 1851-2013.
- JSTOR This link opens in a new windowMaxwell Library has access to more than 3,500 journal titles across the following five collections: Arts & Sciences I, II, III, IV, and Ecology and Botany I. Subject coverage includes mathematics, philosophy, anthropology, economics, history, literature, population studies, sociology, music, art, law, education, business, botany, and ecology.
- Nexis Uni (formerly: LexisNexis Academic) This link opens in a new windowNexis Uni™ features more than 15,000 news, business and legal sources from LexisNexis®—including U.S. Supreme Court decisions dating back to 1790—with an intuitive interface that offers quick discovery across all content types, personalization features such as Alerts and saved searches and a collaborative workspace with shared folders and annotated documents.