Book Review Info

Guidelines for Book Reviews

  1. In general, follow the APA Publication Manual, 6th edition.
  2. Provide a brief but clear description and summary of the contents so that the reader has a good idea of the scope and organization of the book. This is especially important when reviewing anthologies that include multiple sections with multiple authors.
  3. Provide an evaluation of the book, both positive and negative points. What has been done well? Not so well? What did you like about it? Dislike? For example the following are some questions that you can address (not exclusively), as appropriate:
    • What are the important contributions that this book makes?
    • What contributions could have been made, but were not made?
    • What contributions were problematic, weak, etc.?
    • How is the book related to or how does it supplement current work on the topic?
    • To which audience(s) will this book be most helpful?
  4. Use quotations efficiently to provide a flavor of the writing style and/or statements that are particularly helpful in illustrating the author(s) points. 
  5. If you cite any other published work, please provide a complete reference.
  6. Please include a brief biographical statement immediately after your name, usually title and institution. Follow the same format for coauthored reviews. The first author is the contact author.
  7. Please follow this example for the headnote of the book(s) you are reviewing:

    John Jamison Peterson. Persistence to Graduation: The Slippery Slope. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2013.  432 pp. Hardcover: $59.95. ISBN 0‑84480‑508‑2

  8. Our preferred length is 2,000–2,500 words in order for authors to provide a complete, analytical, review. Reviews of shorter books may not need to be of that length.
  9. Other consideration:
    • References to page numbers should look like: (p. 144), (pp. 144-146).
    • Refer to Part 2 (not Part II)
    • Refer to Chapter 7, not chapter 7 or chapter seven
    • Block quotations of 40 words or longer
    • Underline words (and the first piece of following punctuation) that will appear in italics when typeset.
  10. Please email the review to the Book Review Editor (, who will work through necessary revisions with you
  11. Not all reviews submitted may be published, depending upon the Editor’s review and the needs of the journal.
  12. Once reviews have been approved by the editor, they will be passed on to the Copy Editor, Kirsten Robbins. Ms. Robbins will work directly with authors to finalize their reviews prior to publication.
  13. Reviews are published in each of the four volumes during any one year. The time of publication will depend on the submission date and the time needed to complete the editorial process.
NOTE: if the Editor has sent a book to an author for review, but the author is unable to complete the review within a reasonable timeframe, we would appreciate the return of the book as soon as possible; thanks for your understanding.

Please send book review copies to the contact above. Review copies received by the Johns Hopkins University Press office will be discarded.