Novel Review

A novel review is a type of paper that describes, critically analyzes and evaluates the meaning, quality and significance of a novel. You don’t need to retell the whole story. You should focus on the novel’s purpose, content and value.

It is a highly-personal reaction paper that should include the general idea of a novel, an author’s main goal and a reviewer’s remarks on how well an author succeeded. A reviewer’s point of view has to be supported with evidence and proof. As to the length of a paper, there is no specific rule. Depending on the purpose of the review, it may be short or long.

Novel Review Writing Tips

    • Theme

Define the major theme of a novel. How well is it developed? Indicate whether it is traditional or new. What is intent of the theme? Is it entertaining, social, didactic, psychological, cautionary, etc.?

    • Characters

Introduce the key characters. Point out the author’s attitude towards them. Mention whether they have flat or dual personalities. Pay attention to the description of their appearances. Are they short or extended? Does the author provide any information about characters’ background?

    • Plot

Take into consideration how introduction, suspense, climax and conclusion correlate to each other. Do the events occur in a logical or inverse order? Provide a brief synopsis in order to give your readers a general idea about the novel.

    • Style

What is the author’s writing style? Is it rich or straightforward? Find the examples of symbolism, parody and allegory usage if they are present in the text.

Guidelines to Write Novel Review

Take into consideration the following procedures that will help you to write a successful novel review:

    1. Provide essential information about the novel (title, author, date of publishing) in one sentence.
    2. State the author’s purpose in writing the novel. How can you explain why the author chose this particular subject as a core of the novel? Read their biographical information. Probably, it will help you to find an answer. Define the target audience of the novel.
    3. State the subject and thesis of the novel. The subject is a general matter, such as poverty, friendship, treason, hypocrisy, etc. The thesis is the general idea, a philosophical conclusion. It is expressed in a form of a sentence. For example: when you plot mischief for others, you are preparing trouble for yourself.
    4. Explain the author’s method of representation of events. Illustrate your opinion with quotations and specific references. Sometimes an author can combine different methods of writing in their novel. There are four basic methods: narration, exposition, description and argument.
    5. Evaluate the novel for objectivity, usefulness and importance to its target audience.Is this novel worth reading? How did it affect you? Define the strengths and weaknesses of a novel. Try to be objective and persuasive. Support your thoughts with examples.
    6. Provide the reader with your personal interpretation of the novel you have read. You should demonstrate your ability to think critically, provide testimonial material and analyze the deeper meaning of the novel.

Now you know how academic paper of this type should be written and what tips are necessary to follow. You can look through our novel review samples to see the connection between theory and practical skills.

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