Because books are important sources of information for anyone doing history-related research, being able to locate book reviews by reputable scholars will help you keep current on the published literature in your field. A well-written review will not only summarize the book's contents, but also critique the breadth and depth of the author's research, examine the author's viewpoint on the subject of the book, and evaluate how well (or badly) the author's research supports their thesis. Reviews should place the book in the framework of the subject in general and possibly, other books on the topic. It's usually wise to locate multiple reviews of a book since different reviewers may have quite different reactions to the same book.
Below are some resources you may wish to use in tracking down book reviews, particularly from scholarly sources. If you can't find anything on your book, the librarians may have more suggestions on where to look.
If you have difficulty locating reviews of older books in the online resources, try using the following print materials which may be found in the West Wing book stacks.
Be sure you know the book's author, title, and year of publication. Use the publication date as a reference point when looking for reviews. For the most part, general reviews (such as in newspapers) will appear within the first few weeks or months of publication. Scholarly reviews appearing in academic journals may take from a few months up to a year or more to appear.
Use the original publication date of the hardback edition. Paperback editions are often published later. However, ebook editions may be published at the same time as the hardback.
In a few cases, a book may have been published earlier in another country under a different title.
When searching our online databases it may help to:
If you're using a print index to look for reviews of an older book: