What’s in a review?

A review is about 300 – 600 words in length.

It should include:

Summary of the plot/description of product.

Explanation of the features and promised benefits of the product.

Opinion of whether the product succeeds or fails in delivering those benefits.

Specific examples to back up your opinions.

WWWWW/H details of the product.

Clear verdict or rating system about the overall value of the product.

That’s a lot of information to convey in so few words!


Subject- Verb-Object.  And the result is. . .

Example:   Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Ten-year-old orphan Harry Potter (subject) discovers (verb) he is actually a powerful wizard (object).

And the result is…  Harry goes to a wizard school where he makes new friends and learns about his powers—but then, an old enemy returns and Harry must battle him in an effort to save himself and determine the fate of entire wizard world.

Define the AUDIENCE

Once you summarize the story, your next step is to define the product’s genre and target audience.

GENRE— type, category, classification.   Is the book a comedy, romance, mystery, thriller, horror, etc.? Is the music country, heavy metal, classic rock, new wave?

AUDIENCE & AGE RANGE– Provide a general description of the intended audience and target age-range, e.g.

Dora the Explorer is an animated educational program for toddlers.

Twilight is a romantic-thriller for older teens.


A review is a critical evaluation to help readers decide if the product is a good value for their time and money.

Specific information will help readers make that decision. Include:

details about the positive features and benefits that contribute to a product’s value.

details about the product’s weaknesses.


Products, services, public policies – all can be described by their features.

Features create an expectation of benefits.

If the feature doesn’t deliver the expected benefit, then it is not a good value for the money and time invested.