book review 149

For this assignment, you will write a 750-1000-word book review of Parable of the Sower (Butler). The purpose of this assignment is to encourage you to think critically through the role of feminist theory through the lens of narrative.

Guidelines (Also see attached example):

First, this is not a book report, which merely summarizes the book and tells me that you’ve read it. An academic book review is to briefly summarize the ideas of the book, and then provide your opinion about the book’s merits. Essentially, it is a critical analysis of the book. Like the syllabus states, ‘critical’ does not imply that you are being adversarial or harsh in your review. Here, it means that you are going to evaluate whether the author has fulfilled their goals for the book, and provided persuasive evidence for your opinion.

Below is a basic outline of that you should follow:

Introduction. All good pieces of academic writing should have an introduction, and book reviews are no exception. Open with a general description of the topic and/or problem addressed by the work in question, or of a hook to draw your readers in.

Summary of argument. Your review should, as concisely as possible, summarize the book’s argument. What, ultimately, is this book’s raison d’être? If there is an identifiable thesis statement, you may consider quoting it directly.

About the author. Some basic biographical information about the author of the book you are reviewing is necessary. Who are they? What are they known for? What particular sorts of qualifications and expertise do they bring to the subject? How might the work you are reviewing fit into a wider research or career trajectory?

Summary of contents. A reasonably thorough indication of the research methods (like historical archives, popular culture, etc. Or if it is fiction, then what metaphors and objects does the author turn to, in order to make the arguments.

Strength. Identify areas in which you think the book does well.
Weakness. Identify particular areas in which you think the book could be improved.

Conclusion. End your review with a concluding statement summarizing your opinion of the book.

Mechanics:

750-1000-words/double-spaced
Times New Roman/12 point
No spelling or grammatical errors

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