As a society we have started to rely more and more on other people’s reviews to help us make decisions in our personal and professional lives from students choosing what classes to sign up for by using RateMyProfessor.com to reading Amazon’s reviews before making purchase decisions. We react positively or negatively based on recommendations from people we don’t know via social media including Facebook, YouTube, re-tweets, and blog posts.
What is important to note is that all of these decision-making venues would not be possible if no one had stepped up to contribute a product or performance review in the first place! As 21st century members of society, we are charged to transform from a consumer of information to a creator and contributor.
Blogging is about reflecting on and documenting our own thinking and learning, as well as sharing and contributing value to the thinking, perspective, and learning of others, which includes creating and sharing book reviews.
In Challenge 12 you will be sharing and contributing a book review via a blog post. Before you begin, take a few moments to think about what constitutes a quality book review:
Writing a book review is not just about summarizing; it’s also an opportunity for you to present a critical discussion of the book. As a reviewer, you should combine an accurate, analytical reading with a strong, personal response. A good book review describes what is on the page, analyzes how the book tried to achieve its purpose, and expresses any reactions and arguments from a unique perspective.
If you are not sure what book to review, how about…
Follow these steps to complete this challenge:
1. Pick a book you have read and contemplate what you will share.
2. Create a new blog post and:
- name of book and author (with hyperlink to purchase, if applicable)
- brief summary (remember: the summary is not the main focus of the review)
- review based on your opinion of the book, including a short narrative focused on why and how the book has a personal/professional impact on you (remember: combine an accurate, analytical reading with a strong, personal response
- rating: how many stars would you give the book (choose between 1-5 stars)
- image of the book cover
- a selfie of you reading the book or holding the book
Optional: Document the creation of your book review and include images in your post. Break down each step of the process you took to write your book review post (e.g., reading the book, making annotations, highlighting quotes, reading other reviews of the book, writing the post in one sitting or over a period of time).
3. Title, save, and publish your post.
4. Consider various ways you can share to maximize your audience by amplifying your book review:
- Could you submit your book review to Amazon?
- Could you submit your review to an analog or e-journal?
- Could you cross-post your blog to another blog that you contribute to or provide a guest blog on someone else’s blog?
After you have completed your challenge to create a Book Review blog post, please include the URL link to your post with embedded images in the Leave a Reply comment section below to share with us and your documenting community. Check back regularly to see what others have posted!
Added Amplification: Tweet out or share on Instagram the link to your Book Review blog post. Be sure to include the hashtags #documenting4learning and #DLBloggingChallenge12, as well as any appropriate hashtags (e.g., #author, #booktitle, #genre, #topic).