What is a Book Report?

What is a Book Report?

If you attended primary school in America, the question ‘what is a book report?’ may seem a bit ridiculous. You likely remember a book report as a form you filled out in order to receive credit for reading a book from the school library or classroom bookshelves. Chances are, you were asked to write out the title of the book and the author. You probably had to name the main characters as well, and talk about your favorite parts of the story.

Well, if you weren’t raised in a place where book reports were common, the question, ‘what is a book report is a good one.’  Further, if you are a new college student, you might need to rethink your definition of the book report. These assignments are much more complex, and (sadly) there are no pizza coupons or movie passes waiting to award you.

What do You Need in a Book Report?

There is no universal formula for what your college-level book report must contain. Your professor or TA may provide a rubric outlining what needs to be included. You may be asked to simply create your own format.

Just remember that the point of a book report is to show that you have read the book, are familiar with the characters, and have studied the plot line enough to have some insights. It’s more of an analysis. This is in contrast to a book review where your educated opinion is the most important element.

Can You Write a Report on a Book You’ve Never Read?

The simple answer is yes. There are many sites where you can read plot summaries of popular books and likely fudge a book report. The only problem is that it limits your selection. Worse, these sites provide pretty elementary insights. Rather than trying to fake it, you might try using the best online essay writing services instead. This way, you will know that the person writing the report for you has actually read the book and understands the book report requirements.  Also, if you have struggled to choose between the book and the movie, please let a writer help you.

Opened Holy Bible with a silver ballpoint pen in it lying on pile of books isolated on white background.
Opened Holy Bible with a silver ballpoint pen in it lying on a pile of books isolated on white background.

What Does a Book Report Consist Of?

Regardless of the format, your book report will contain several elements. These are likely to be:

  • Character Summaries of The Most Important Characters
  • Identification of The Protagonist And Antagonist
  • A Description of The Relationships Between Characters
  • An Outline of The Main Plot Points
  • A Description of The Introduction Climax And Conclusion of The Story
  • Some Analytical Information You Have to Provide

Keep in mind that the specifics that you are required to give may be much different from this list.

What About Using Already Written Book Reports?

You aren’t alone if you want to use old book reports on new assignments. In fact, you may be able to do just that. As long as the required elements are there, you may be able to rewrite things sufficiently and create a book report that you can use. However, you should know that book reports are just as likely to be plagiarism-scanned as any other writing assignment.

Better yet, you can also write a book report on a book review. This way you will have plenty of information to go on. As a general rule, a book review will have everything you need for a book report and more.


You will have to do quite a bit more work to complete a college-level book report. The assignments are longer, and you will need to show more insight. Many students find these are tougher than they imagine.

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Jessey Wright

My name is Jessey and I’m an ex- employee of several essay writing services. Be sure to follow, as I’m the one who knows all the dirty secrets of essay writing companies. I definitely know how to reap some benefits from my experience and share them with you in my blog.