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09 May 10 How to Write a Book Review

A book review can either boost the sales of a book, or it can push it on the sloppy track to oblivion. Thus, it is important for a reviewer to write a proper review of a book.

Although a book review contains the personal experience of a reviewer, writing a book review is slightly technical. It has certain aspects to it which should not be overlooked, to make a review add value to the reader. In this post, I will talk about those technical things.

Anatomy of a book review

Step 1: Provide essential information

In the very first paragraph provide essential information about the book; like, name of the book, author, subject matter, publication, type of book, etc. You can skip this if you are writing a review for the online media, as the information will be available on the backside of the book’s jacket that you will put in the there.

Step 2: Write overview

In this paragraph, write about the book and the author’s intention behind writing it. You can get this information by reading the preface of the book, or the first chapter of the book. You should also write about the point of view from which this book has been written. You should also mention the genre, intended audience, and what style has been adopted.

Step 3: your view on the book

Now, write if the reader should buy the book or not. If it is worth reading or not. Write in brief about what you think about this book. Think this step like creating an elevator pitch.

Step 4: Elaborate

In this step, you need to elaborate on the topics covered in the book. You can also cite some paragraph from the book that may tell about the subject matter. If it is non-fiction, describe about the things talked in the book.

In short, you need to give gist of the book in this step to give readers an idea about the content.

Step 5: Give your judgment

The next step is to write what you think about the arguments, theories, and examples cited by the author. Do you think they are relevant? Has the author used them judiciously? How successful has the author been in exploring the subject? Do you think it would have been written in a better manner? Quantify your claim and make your suggestion here.

Step 6: Write about author

Now it is time to talk about author, his credential, and about books that the author has written in the past. Give a brief description of author’s background.

Step 7: Summarize

In this step, you will like to summarize all you have said above. You should write about book content, author’s idea about the topic he has discussed main points of the books followed by your remark and conclusion.

These are the essential steps in writing a book review. Along with these you can also include things related to physical structure of the book (binding, formatting, etc.) as well as about the index.

Tags: , Backside, Book Author, , Gist, How To Write A Book, How To Write A Book Review, , Oblivion, , Personal Experience, Preface, Publication Type, Sloppy Track, , , , Worth Reading, , Writing A Book Review

07 Jan 10 Structure of a Cover Letter

In the last post, we talked about the importance of a cover letter, and how much it can assist in getting an interview call. In this short article, I will talk about anatomy of a cover letter; about how one should go about crafting a cover letter.

Anatomy of a cover letter

Step 1: length of a cover letter

A cover letter should not be more than one page long, and when I say “page” I mean “A4 size page”. Subdivide your cover letter into 3 paragraphs, and try to keep the cover letter within 350-400 words. The goal of your cover letter is to generate interest in the reader not to chock him to death with your uncontrolled biographical rattling.

Step 2: Name and address

Put name and address of recipient at the top on the left-hand side of the cover letter, and fold the cover letter putting names and address at the top.

Step 3: Use proper salutation

Do not begin your cover letter with “To Whom It May Concern” as it will not concern anyone. Find the name of the person you are sending your résumé, and use his second name (family name) as salutation as in Dear Mr. Jones, or Dear Ms. Lloyd. If you fail to get name of the person who will read your cover letter than you can simply write Dear Sir/Madam.

Step 4: 1st paragraph

Being this paragraph with writing why you want to work with the company followed by giving a brief introduction about yourself and talk about the academic qualification you have in brief (of course, I am assuming here that you fresher looking for your first job). Do not tell the reader everything you know. Say only as much as required to garner interest.

Step 5: 2nd paragraph

The second paragraph of your cover letter should consist of the things you learned while pursuing your highest degree, the degree on the basis of which you are applying for the job. Mention 5 to 7 key concepts that are relevant to the industry. Talk about cutting edge things that you learned.

Step 6: 3rd paragraph

Write how you can add value to the organization if you are hired. Just use 2-3 sentences to explain this.


You should sound confident while writing a cover letter, but avoid sound overconfident. You should sound sincere in seeking employment but never sound begging. It’s not good for health and morale. Be professional and sound like one. No one cares how you got that stain on your shoes. They just do not like stains.

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24 May 09 Anatomy of a Persuasive Letter

As the name suggest, a persuasive letter is written with an intention to move the recipient in the certain direction. Writing and winning the reader can be both easy and difficult depending upon the nature of the letter, and the mood of the recipient. If the recipient is in positive frame of mind, and is likely to accept the proposal then even a weak logic and not-so-strong persuasive letter will be effective, but if the recipient is not likely to accept your proposal then it will need some convincing before the recipient agrees to the proposal. Writing this kind of persuasive letter takes some research and effort.

There is a certain structure you need to follow in order to build a strong argument that in turn will win over the recipient. Before discussing the structure of a persuasive letter, let’s first talk about the research objective. The following list will tell you what all you need to know before you can begin writing a persuasive letter.

  • Define the target audience
  • Purpose of writing a persuasive letter.
  • Make a list of information you want to include in the letter
  • Make a list of supportive arguments. The arguments will show the reader what is in there for him.
  • Make a list of possible objections, or mental block that might be pushing the reader to decide against your proposal.
  • Is there something peculiar about the problem you are going to address? Make a list of it.

Anatomy of a persuasive letter

Introduction: Introduce your product, services and request in this first paragraph. Outline the important changes in this new version.

Outline the benefits: The introduction paragraph should be followed by the paragraph that will talk about the benefit of the product, services and request you are making. In this paragraph write statements that will build case for you.

Call for action: Once the recipient knows about the benefit he will have by accepting your proposal, you need to tell him what you want from him, and what action he should take to help you.

Thanks: Thank your reader for the time he has devoted in reading the letter. Also include a conclusion in this final paragraph. The conclusion should be as forward thinking as it can be.

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