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* History

Sources for the study of history at the University of Rochester
Helpful Tips

When searching for a book review...

  • Enclose the primary title of the book in quotation marks
    (e.g. "Revisiting Prussia's Wars Against Napoleon")
  • Consider adding the author's last name to your search
    (e.g. "A Cultural History of the Atlantic World" AND Thornton)
  • Use a Lastname, Firstname format to find reviews on a certain author
    (e.g. "Smith, John" or "Smith, J")
  • Use the database filters to limit your search to book reviews

Help is Available!

Lara Nicosia is the liaison librarian for African and African American Studies, History, and Religion & Classics and she is always happy to help!

What is a Book Review?

Book reviews are important resources for establishing context around historical research. These reviews may offer a summary of a book, but will also usually provide a critical discussion of the book’s main thesis, while comparing the book’s content and conclusions to related works in the field.

Finding book reviews can help you:

  • Identify books to incorporate into your research
  • Understand how a book fits into the larger scholarly conversation on a topic
  • Evaluate the merits and shortcomings of a particular work
  • Develop your skills at assessing research material in the field
  • Establish the "intellectual climate" at a given point in time

For more information on the value of book reviews as sources, see Jenny L. Presnell, The Information-Literate Historian: A Guide to Research for History Students, 3rd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2019), 45-47.

Selected Journals and Websites with Scholarly Book Reviews

Looking to stay current on what's being published in the field? Need an example of a scholarly book review? The following selection of journals regularly publish book reviews in each issue:

Databases with Scholarly Book Reviews

Printed Indexes of Book Reviews