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Library Tutorials: Book Reviews

Tutorials covering library processes and technology.

How to Find Book Reviews

How to Find Book Reviews

Step One - Identify the year the book was first published.
Check the copyright information on the title page, or search WorldCat for the first edition.

Step Two - Find a source that indexes articles that were published when your book was first published.

Keep in mind, some books never get reviewed at all!

General Indexes That Include Book Reviews

Academic Search Complete - Most useful for books published after 1990. 
Search for the title of the book, and under Refine Search, choose Document Type "Book Review".

JSTOR - For books published from the 1800's through the early 2000's
Search for the title of the book, and narrow your search to article Type "Review"

Choice Reviews Online - Full text of book reviews published in Choice magazine, 1987 to present.

New York Times Book Reviews

Books – New York Times Website Searchable reviews from 1981 to the present.

New York Times (Historical Newspaper Archive) - All articles from 1851 to the past three years.
Choose Document Type "Review" in the drop down search boxes, or under "More Search Options"

Major Book Review Sources

Book Review Digest. 1905-. (Shelving: Print Periodicals)
Since 1905, this source has provided citations to and excerpts of reviews from a selective list of periodicals. To be included, non-fiction works must have received two reviews, and fiction must have received four reviews in the periodicals covered. Entries are arranged alphabetically by author, though there is a Subject and Title Index. Information includes bibliographic data, a synopsis of the book, and citations to the reviews with excerpts from 3 or 4 reviews. Each citation includes the reviewer's name and the number of words.

Book Review Index. 1965-2012. (Special Shelving: Government Documents)
A rather exhaustive index, now covering reviews in more than 470 periodicals, this source provides only the citation to the review. Entries are arranged alphabetically by author, but a Title Index is included. Because the Index contains such a large number of review citations, it is by far the most complete source of book reviews since 1965.

Subject Discipline Indexes that include Book Reviews

ATLA Religion Database
Indexes international periodicals, multi-author books, and reviews in religion, 1949 to present.

General Science Abstracts
Indexes periodicals on astronomy, biology, chemistry, earth sciences, math, medicine, and physics.

Philosopher's Index
Indexes and abstracts books and journals of philosophy and related fields, 1940 to present.

Finding Book Reviews on the Web

Anyone can leave a review for something on the internet, so use your best judgment when checking the quality of a book review you find online. Many online reviews you find will be left by readers, rather than professional publications. Below are a few sources where you can find book reviews:

Reference Help

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