Writing an Essay on a Book: The Guide

For most people, writing an essay is an uphill task that they would rather avoid. However, writing an essay on a book isn’t as difficult as most people believe. With the right procedure, you can write a good essay even if you don’t perceive yourself to be a professional writer. Whether you’re writing about a novel or a class book, the procedure is the same.

essay on book

Thesis statement

Like every other essay, writing an essay on a book starts with a thesis statement. This is usually one statement that reflects the author’s message in the book. This is usually the hardest part but with the right questions, you can get it right. Start by listing down some themes that are used in the book. Be careful not to confuse themes with a plot. Themes are subjects such as power, growing up, death, revenge, and freedom among others. Pick one theme from the list, ensuring you’re comfortable to create a good argument with the one you choose. For example, if you believe that a protagonist opted for divorce because of the tough experiences she had while growing up instead of her husband’s infidelity then you can use that theme to build a tough argument. Make your position clear since it will help you write the first paragraph.

To make a strong point, you can ask further questions related to your preferred theme. For instance, you can think about the causes and effects of the theme as well as possible lessons the theme is trying to teach. Although it’s okay to work with two themes, you have to ensure you can relate them before opting for that. Asking these questions will help you build stronger evidence to support your theme.


Highlighting the evidence is the next step after the thesis statement. This means finding specific sentences that support your claim in the book. The direct sentences should be accompanied by your interpretation of the meanings. As such, you have to use analytical skills at this stage. Analyze what motivates the character as well as any other related actions and find how they are connected to your theme which is the basis for your main argument. Remember that the stronger the evidence, the easier it will be to prove your point.


How you connect your arguments is also important. You have to ensure that they transition well to give the whole essay a smooth flow. This is crucial because the essay should be whole even though it consists of different parts. If the sentences and paragraphs together with the different claims blend, it will be easier to convince the reader. If your arguments don’t have a smooth flow, it will be harder for the reader to piece them together which will, in turn, make the essay lose value.


An essay on a book must have a conclusion. This is the final paragraph and it is the summary of everything you have talked about in the essay. Here, you summarize the whole piece by connecting the thesis statement with the rest of the arguments to help the reader see that your main argument is legit. You can provide insight into a character or theme that you haven’t talked about yet but keep it simple because the conclusion shouldn’t have a very long paragraph.