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Teen Book Reviewers

…a short how to guide for teens.


We’re looking for teen book reviewers!  You may review a book of your choice, or ask to be added on our “advanced readers” reviewers (to review new or not-yet-published books).  If selected, your reviews will be published on our blog and website. Don’t be shy! All genres welcome.  For more info, contact Jane at



150-200 words

Read the entire book.  This may seem like a no-brainer, but you can’t give a fair review without reading the whole thing.  Sometimes, it helps to also read prefaces and the author notes (usually following the end of the book).

Your opinion is more important than the summary of the book.  No need to give a summary.  Just your critical assessment is fine.  It could involve your reaction, your engagement to the text, and/or your opinions about the characters or plot.  You could also suggest whether or not other teens would like the book.

You may select your own titles, but please make sure they are books the library owns.  Check our catalog for your book title. Make sure that there is at least one copy of the book at a Pasadena library (Location code: PAS…)

New books (published within the last year) or books from the Teen Booklist are preferable.

Please contact me (Jane) if you would like me to provide the books for you instead.



Have a set of sticky notes ready to tag quotes or passages that stand out to you.

After reading the book, jot down quick notes about what stood out to you.  Was the ending weak?  Did the characters develop?  Was the plot believable?  Did the writing capture you?

Leave some time between your initial and final review.  Write a draft of your review, and then finish it the next day.  You might change your mind about a certain phrase or opinion you wrote.

Use your words wisely.  Short reviews can be really strong if you’re using the right words, but also don’t forget to give examples or details when the point needs it.


Examples of teen book reviews:

The Morning Sword wraps up the Katerina trilogy nicely. The travel to Egypt is a nice touch in the book.  Sometimes confusing with so many characters, this is a title that may force a reader to revisit the other books in the trilogy to remember details necessary to understand the plot. – Gwen Amborski, Teen Reviewer, VOYA Magazine

This novel portrays an unhealthy, violent relationship in a comprehensive and engaging way.  The insight into the life of the victim seems very realistic.  So Much it Hurts could be used as a great discussion starter, reflecting the horrors of abusive relationships and how to handle them.  The story is a little tedious as Iris becomes more aware of the awful situation she is in.  Nevertheless, the dark drama is mesmerizing. – Rachelle David, Teen Reviewer, VOYA Magazine

Where the Stars Still Shine is a novel to be valued for the author’s engaging writing style rather than the characters alone.  The plot is predictable—bad characters disappear when they need to, love triangles threaten to destroy friendships but never do—however, the author masterfully weaves everything together into something much deeper than the plot.  The novel tries to get at the inner workings of identity and does so beautifully. – Raluca Topliceanu, Teen Reviewer, VOYA Magazine


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