How to Write a Compelling Review

  1. Reviews should be honest—whether positive or negative.
  2. Share how you’ve been challenged to apply the book’s content to your life and ministry, actions you’ve taken, or changes you’ve made as a result of reading a book (see examples below). “A book review written well will serve and strengthen the church in its task to advance the Kingdom of God.”1
  3. Don't over-summarize. Spend more time on interaction and reflection.2
  4. For Christian book reviews especially, engage with the question of whether the book is biblical and whether it helps the reader grow in the gospel.3
  5. We ask that, in addition to posting on your blog, you also post your review on a consumer site (,,,,,,,,,,,, and all have a section on each book’s product page dedicated to customer reviews). To comply with new regulations introduced by the Federal Trade Commission, please mention as part of every review that Crossway has provided a complimentary copy of this book through the Blog Review Program.

The following are examples of questions you can try to answer in your review. This is just a starting point, we don’t want to dampen your unique voice and creativity.

  1. Did the book change how you think about God, the church, or this world? Draw a connection to your job, relationships, or devotional life.
  2. Were you compelled to implement something new as a parent, spouse, friend, student, or employee? Share where God’s grace is at work.
  3. Are you seeing new ways the gospel affects your hobbies, your past, your dreams?
  4. Do you have fresh ideas for serving your local church or community?

1. From The Do’s and Don't’s of Book Reviews by Dave Jenkins, Cross Focused Reviews (March 2013) 2. From How to Write a Great Book Review by John Starke, The Gospel Coalition (June 2011) 3. From The Do’s and Don't’s of Book Reviews by Dave Jenkins, Cross Focused Reviews (March 2013)