Food Foolish: The Hidden Connection Between Food Waste, Hunger and Climate Change

• Use the following checklist as a guide for writing critical book reviews.

1. What does the book cover? (i.e., this is the summary part.)

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2. Who is the author, what are his or her potential biases, a nd who is the intended audience

(i.e., this is the background part.)

3. What are the major points that the author makes in the book? Please understand that

an author did no t spend sometimes years to write a book, research a topic extensively,

gather opinio ns and stories, etc. just to hear hims e lf or her self talk. She or he uses

arguments to persuade you, the reader, of something. In other words, it is unlikely to

be meaningless writing .

4. Do you think that the arguments and ideas pres ented in the book are cor rect? Do you

accept them? Why or why not? Specifically, does the author substantiate his or her

points satisfactorily with information, logic, examples, etc.?

5. Do the author’s ideas agree with your experience and knowledge?

6. If you have read material from other resources (news articles for the c urrent event

assignment, for instance) on the same general topic, how does this book compare? It is

important to realize that knowledge evolves and thus, a book might be outdated; hence,

you must keep a critical mind while reading.

7. Are there special features about this book which interest or disturb you, such as unusual

information or new ways of look ing at an issue?

8. Are there questions raised fo r you in this book which the author does not answer?

9. Are there additional comments you should include in order to make the esse nc e of this

book understood by someone reading your review?

10. Does the thesis of the book make you reconsider what you knew? One can argue that if

an argument does not persuade you to change in some way, then it is pointless. Typically,

reviewers will structure this kind of review by expressing 3-5 remarkable ways in which

the book affected them. Note that there is a difference between a book that affects you

and a book that teaches you. Sometimes, the difference is subtle, but it is worthwhile

to distinguish these two qualities.

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