Writing a Book Report
These instructions will help you to write a good book report at almost any level. Answer the questions in order, and then write them in paragraph form, NOT as a list. The answers to the first two questions should be the first paragraph. The second paragraphshould start with the third question. When you answer the questions, remember to answer in complete sentences. To do this clearly, include the question in the answer. Do not try to answer the question about symbolic language unless you are reading a book from level C or above. You may not even find any examples of that in books at those levels, so if you can't find anything, don't force the issue.
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The first sentence of your book report should give the title of the book (underlined), the author's name, and a general statement. Here are three different examples of ways you might do this.
- Dear Mr. Henshaw, by Beverly Cleary, was an interesting book to read because it was true-to-life, believable, and a story of growth.
- Beverly Cleary's Dear Mr. Henshaw was an enjoyable book to read because the story was clear and my English grew along with the boy's.
- I enjoyed reading Wanda Gag's Millions of Cats because the illustrations were charming and the story was funny.
What is the time frame (setting) of the book? How do you know?
How much time elapses (passes) from the beginning to the end?
Where does the story take place? How do you know?
Who are the three main characters?
What is the main conflict in the story?
How is it resolved?
If you were the main character, what would you have done?
What did you think was the best part of the book?
What are your favorite new words from the piece?
Do you have any quotations you saved?
What new facts did you learn that you hadn't known before?
What was the main idea of the book?
What kind of symbolic language or symbolic plotting did you see?
Would you like to read other books by the same author? Why?
If you could talk to the author, what would you say? --ask?
Give specific examples.
Would you recommend this book to other students? Why? (What would you tell them to interest them in the book?)
Students: If you would like to e-mail me any book reports that you used this form for, I will edit for correctness and publish the best ones on this page. A simple way to use this form is to copy it to disk, answer the questions, then erase the questions. From there, make your paragraph breaks and read it for smoothness.
©Alison McMahon Johnson 1997