How to Find Book Reviews
Book reviews can often seem hard to find, but there are many journals, magazines, and newspapers that have book reviews in them available the Eli M. Oboler library. The Eli library has several databases and indexes in its collection that can make the task of finding reviews much easier.
To find book reviews, simply search by book title and/or author in these indexes and databases. Some of these databases are fairly specific, so its often best to start with the more general databases and work your way to the more specific ones as you go. Please feel free to ask for help!
All of the databases are available via the Eli library databases page.
General Databases and Indexes:
- Academic Search Complete
- This database is similar to MasterFile Premier. Contains citations for book reviews of both fiction and non-fiction titles. It also has some full text.
- MasterFILE Premier
- This database contains citations for reviews of fiction and non-fiction, plays, etc. Sometimes it includes full text.
- This database contains full text reviews and citation information for fiction, only. Full text is not available.
- Reader's Guide Retrospective
- This database contains citations for reviews of both fiction and non-fiction. No full text is available.
- Book Review Digest
Reference Collection: Z1219 .C96
- Lists citations of reviews for popular fiction and non-fiction published between 1906 and the present.
- Book Review Index
Reference Collection: Z1035.A1 B6
- Lists citations for reviews of fiction and non-fiction published between 1966 and the present.
- Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature
Reference Collection: AI3 .R48
- Contains citations for reviews of books that have been published in popular magazines and journals between 1900 and the present
Searching the indexes of periodicals like Booklist, CHOICE, and The New York Review of Books is another good way to find book reviews for both fiction and non-fiction titles.
Specialized Databases and Indexes, by Subject:
- This database contains citation information for reviews of books published since 1982.
- Education Index
Reference Collection: LB14.6 .E23
- Contains citation information for reviews of books published 1929 and the years 1932 to 1996. Also available online.
Humanities and Social Sciences
- America: History and Life
- This database contains citations of reviews for books that deal with American history. Some linked full text is available.
- Historical Abstracts
- This database contains citations of reviews for books on all topics in history, from all time periods and places. Some linked full text is available.
- Music Index
Reference Collection: ML118 .M84, with older issues in Storage
- Contains citation information for reviews of books on music published from 1949 to the present. Also available online. Also available online
- Philosopher's Index
Reference Collection: B1 .P45
- Contains citation information for reviews of books on philosophy published between 1968 and the present. Also available online.
- RILM: Réportoire International de Littérature Musicale (Abstracts of Musical Literature)
Reference Collection: ML1 .I83
- Contains citations for reviews of books on music published between 1968 and 1989.
- Sociological Abstracts
Reference Collection: HM1 .S67
- Contains citation information for reviews of books on sociology and sociology-related topics published between 1952 and the present.
- General Science Index
Reference Collection: Q1 .G452
- Contains citation information for reviews of books on the sciences published between 1978 and 1996.
Another good source for reviews of non-fiction books is peer-reviewed journals. Many of these journals include reviews of books that touch on their field. For example, History Today (Periodicals D 1.H 818) has reviews of books that deal with historical topics and Journal of Economic Literature (Periodicals HB 1.J 6) has reviews of books that deal with economics. Not all peer-reviewed journals have reviews, but the majority of them do. Searching the indexes of journals like these can be a fast way to find book reviews.
Remember, if you get stuck at any point or need help deciding which sources are the best place to look for reviews of your book, feel free to ask for help at the first floor Reference Desk or by e-mail via our Ask a Librarian service.