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Explain what are the author's major points?

What type of confirmation does the author use to show his or her points? Is the confirmation convincing? Why or why not? Does the author maintain his or her points sufficiently?

How does a book relate to the other books on same topic?

Is the book exclusive? Does it add the new information? What group of readers, if any, would find this book the most practical?

Does author have the essential expertise to write a book?

What credentials or background does a author have that qualify him or her to write the book? Has author written the other books or the papers on this topic? Do others in this field consider this author to be an expert?

What are most suitable criteria by which to judge a book? How successful do you think a author was in carrying out overall purposes of a book?

Depending on your book's purpose, you should select the appropriate criteria by which to judge its achievement. Use any criteria your instructor has given you in the lecture or on your assignment sheet. Otherwise, here are some criteria to judge.

For example, if an author says his or her rationale is to argue for a particular solution to a public problem, then review should judge whether author has defined problem, planned the points of attack, identified causes, offered specific solutions and provided necessary background information. A review should also designate author's professional content,  form,  expertise, and the popularity of daytime serials.

Today, the media critics take a mixture of approaches. Some explore the audience response and discover that, depending on the race, sex or even the nationality, the people "decode" same story in different the ways. Others regard soaps as a kind of the subversive form of the popular culture that supports the women's deepest grievances.

Still others view soap as a "text" and the attempt to "deconstruct" it, much as a literary critic dissects a work of the literature. The Michael Intintoli's project is somewhat different. For him, soap is a cultural product mediated and created by the corporate interests.

It is the construction of the soaps, then, that is at center of his taking the Soaps Seriously.

To understand creation of the soap operas, Intintoliadopted an ethnographic methodology that required a rather long siege onset of the "Guiding Light." Like a good anthropologist, he picked up a great deal about concerns and the problems that drive production of a daily soap opera. For novice there is much to be learned here . . . .

But book stops short of where it should ideally start. In many ways, the "Guiding Light" was simply wrong soap to study. First the broadcast in 1937, the "Guiding Light" is oldest soap opera in United States, owned and shaped by the Procter and the Gamble, which sells it to the CBS. It is therefore perfect soap to study for a history of changing daytime serial. But that is not the Intintoli's project . . .

Taking the Soaps Seriously is a good introduction to manufacture of daily soap opera. It analyzes the soap conventions, reveals hierarchy of the soap production, and describes a slice of corporate production of the mass culture.


Book reviews usually include the following kinds of the information; keep in mind, though, that you may require including the other information to make clear your assessment of a book.

Most reviews start off with a heading that includes all bibliographic information about a book. If your assignment page (sheet) does not specify which form you should use, you can use the following:

Author, Title, Place of publication: date of publication, publisher, Number of pages.

Like most pieces of the writing, review itself generally begins with an introduction that lets you're the readers know what review will say. The first paragraph generally includes author and the title again, so your readers do not have to look up to find this information. You should also include a very concise overview of contents of  a book, purpose or the audience for a book, and your evaluation and reaction.

You should then move into a section of the background information that helps place a book in the context and discusses the criteria for judging a book. Next, you should give a summary of main points of a book, the quoting and paraphrasing the key phrases from author. Unarticulated ideological structure in which the soaps are created.

Finally, you obtain to heart of your review. The assessment of a book. In this section, you might discuss some of the following issues:

  • How well a book has achieved its objective?
  • What type of possibilities are suggested by a book
  • What a book has left out?
  • How a book compares to the others on subject?
  • What explicit points are not persuasive?
  • What type of personal experiences you've had related to subject.

It is important to use the labels to carefully discriminate your views from a author's, so that you don't confuse your reader.

Then, like the other essays, you can end with a straight comment on a book, and tie together issues raised in review in the conclusion.

There is, of course, no set formula, but a common rule of the thumb is that first one-half to two-thirds of review should summarize author's main thoughts and at least one-third should estimate the book.


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