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HIST 3301 (Dr. Elizabeth Clark): Historical Methods

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Finding Book Reviews

Book reviews appear in scholarly historical journals just as original articles do.

If you're looking for reviews of a specific book, search for that title as a phrase in a database such as JSTOR or Academic Search Complete. To ensure you keep the title as one single phrase, put quotation marks around it. "Past in the Making" will focus your search your search in important ways, avoiding false hits you'd get without those quotation marks.

You can limit your results to book reviews in one of these ways:

  • Use the databases own features to limit the search to book reviews:
    • In JSTOR, you can check the box for "Review" under "Item Type" in the "Narrow By" section.
    • In Academic Search Complete, there is a scroll-down list for "Document Type" near the end of the "Search Options" section. In the "Document Type" list, you can choose "Book Review."
  • Sometimes the database record may not have been marked as a review, even though it should be, so the features above might not find everything you want. If you search without applying those limiters, you can use variations of book and review as search terms to focus your search more. You may want to find reviewed as well as review and books as well as book, so use truncation symbols:
    • In JSTOR, the truncation symbol is a plus sign, so review+ will find review, reviewed, and reviews.
    • In Academic Search Complete, the truncation symbol is an asterisk, so review* would achieve the same result.

If you're seeking reviews of a book that's several decades old and you don't find the reviews in one of our databases, the print series Book Review Index on our Reference Shelves may help.

Interlibrary Loan

If you need a book or article that we don't have, you can get it via Interlibrary Loan Details (ILL).