For most students, writing a book report strikes terror in them. It is because writing a book report challenges students to think critically and write about what they have read on a specific book. A book report gives you a chance to read, understand, and appreciate the work and its author.
Writing a book report requires you to give a straightforward summary of the test. However, to write a compelling book report, you need the following strategy to get it right.
How to Write a Good Book Report
1. Researching, Reading, and Outlining the Report
- Carefully Follow the Requirements of your Assignment
The first thing you ought to do is to read through the book report writing requirements and carefully take note of any questions you might have. Get clarification on any issues you might have from your instructor.
- Read the Whole Book
There is no substitute in reading a book that you want to write a report about. So, pick the book you will enjoy reading and have fun reading it. Besides, have a pen and paper at your side. As you read through, jot down the significant plot points and characters that will be useful when it comes to writing the report.
Read the book in ranges while having breaks to maintain sharp attention. Get yourself plenty of time to read through the whole book without skimming. Don’t be persuaded by online book summaries because you can’t guarantee that they are accurate.
- Take Notes
As you read through the book, be sure to jot a few notes that will come in handy when writing the report. Keep a pencil or highlighter to mark any information you find confusing or curious. Identify the evidence and details that you can use in your report writing by placing a note by quotations or examples. For instance, you can get a sentence that clearly describes the primary setting in the book.
- Create an Outline
An outline is a plan that lists how you organize your book report. It shows what each section and paragraph will discuss and the details and information from the book that you will include. However, be flexible are book report writing often leads to its own realizations. Writing an outline is simple and will not take much of your time, but will save you plenty of time when it comes to editing and proofreading.
- Mix Quotations and Examples from the text
When building your report outline, try to brace any general points of the summary with specific details or information from the book. By doing so, you will demonstrate to your instructor that you did not only read the book but also you understand it. However, vary your example while keeping your quotations brief. Don’t overuse the quotes.
- Don’t Endeavour to Cover Everything
Writing a book report does not require you to write all the things about the book, but summarizing the notable ideas to give your reader a feel for the book. Therefore, focus on details and the main characters of the book.
2. Writing the Body of the Book Report
Your introduction paragraph should be one that is informative and grabs the reader’s attention. It may have an interesting quote from the book that opens up the reader to what comes in the next texts. As such, put a general sentence that summarizes the entire book report at the end of your introduction. Besides introduction should also include the book’s title and the author’s name.
- Give a Detailed Setting of the Book
Describing the book’s setting is a great way to start your book report’s body as it sets the pace for all other things that come next in the report. So, describe the locations mentioned in the book to demonstrate your understanding of the book. Make clear the setting in which the story takes place. Use a vivid language as much as you can with plenty of details.
- Writer a General Plot Summary
The plot offers you the opportunity to tell your readers exactly what the story in the book is all about. Therefore, your plot summary should mention the main events and actions that might be there in the book and how they influence the characters.
- Introduce the Main Characters if Any
When mentioning the characters in the book report, be sure to introduce who they are and their significance in the book. Also, give detailed information describing the main characters while focusing on how they look like and their most important actions.
- Examine the Main Themes and Arguments
As you were reading, you probably wrote down the main ideas from the book. Now, you can write them down with a close look at the character’s actions and how they follow particular patterns if they do. If the book is nonfiction, look for the author’s main argument or thesis statement. What do they prove or suggest?
- Note the Writing Style and Tone
Go through the sections of the book and note the writing style, tone, and other writing elements like the choice of words. Ask yourself if the author wrote the book more formally or informally. Look whether the author favours particular ideas and arguments over the others. To get the right feel of the writer’s tone, think about how you feel when reading some parts of the texts. For instance, if the author uses lots of slang words or terms, the author is perhaps going for a more approachable style.
3. Conclude Your Report
- Write a brief conclusion
When concluding your book report, you require summarizing all you have written for your reader. Summarize the entire book report in a few quick sentences and make a final statement about whether you would recommend the book to other readers and why. Don’t bring up new thoughts in the concluding paragraph, but save the space for the recap.
- Proofread and Edit your Report
Go through the report at least twice with the first round concentrating on making sure that the structure and flow of the texts make sense in each paragraph. Let the second time be proofreading and editing the small typos and errors like missing commas and quotation marks. You can also check out for awkward phrasing of the texts. Ensure you write the author’s name, the title of the book, and character names correctly. Don’t rely on the computer’s spell check to unravel any errors for you!
- Request someone else to read it
Request a friend or classmate to read your report. Ask them to write down a few comments or corrections on the margins. Once they are through with reading to the last paragraph, ask them what their suggestions are concerning the report.
- Polish the Final Document
Once you make all the corrections and considered all the considerations, print a clean version of your report. Carefully read through it slowly while looking for any errors. Compare your final report with the guide sheet to ensure you followed all the requirements in the grading rubric. If all the elements are correct, you can then submit your book report from grading.
Writing a book report doesn’t have to be challenging! If you follow the steps we have discussed above, we believe you can write an impeccable book report. Simply choose the book that interests you the most, read, and understand it, and other things else will fall in line.