NEPCA publishes refereed reviews on this site. Some of them are reprinted in NEPCA News, our annual newsletter.
If you publish a review of a Wiley publication such as the Journal of American Culture or the Journal of Popular Culture, Wiley allows us to repost these but only after the journal has been published. You can send such reviews to the attention of the Executive Secretary after they come out. Send a Word file and the information on where it was previously published.
Guidelines for NEPCA Reviewers
Assignment vs. Request
In general, we are happy to entertain requests for book reviews of new and recent works (and sometimes, even older works). In such cases of requests, the responsibility will be upon the reviewer to acquire access to the work being reviewed.
If you are interested in reviewing and open to what works we have available, be sure to sign up to be a reviewer and let us know what your preferences are: https://goo.gl/forms/JUQmF7QyeUgOuTKi2
500-1000 words. Ideally, your review should be no more than 700 words and shorter is preferred.
Style and content
Avoid jargon and write clearly. NEPCA is a diverse organization with scholars from many specialties. Our goal is to inform our membership, and much of it will not be aware of the subject about which you write. Tailor your review towards a more general readership than you might for a specialty journal. Please write in straightforward prose even if the author does not and even if the book’s approach is abstract and/or theoretical.
Please include the following:
- A brief summary of the content and the author’s affiliation/identity/qualifications (Well-known? First book/documentary/work? Academic specialty? Journalist?)
- An overview of the work’s argument(s)
- An assessment of the methodology and research. (Does it break new ground or does it plow well-tilled soil?)
- An assessment of how well (or badly) the argument is sustained
- An assessment of the object’s usefulness. Who would want to engage with it? (If strictly for specialists, say so.) Could it be used in a classroom? If so, by whom? NEPCA members are particularly keen to find resources that work well in a college classroom.
The piece should be entered into a Google Doc and shared (with Edit capabilities) to firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition to sharing the document, you should include a follow-up email with “Book Review: [Book title]” in the subject. Additionally, the document should be formatted as such:
- 12-point Arial.
- Reviewed item’s details should be single space
- Review should be double-spaced.
- Header should use this format
- Name of item being reviewed.
- Format: (book, audiobook, graphic novel, website, documentary, etc)
- Length: (pages, hours)
- Publication Date/Year:
- Link to the publisher’s product site/resource
- Institution (if relevant)
- Social Media Handle (Twitter or LinkedIn)
- 2 sentence byline.
Example for header:
- Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America
- James Forman Jr.
- 320 Pages
- Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Example for Byline
- Lance Eaton
- Brandeis University
- Lance Eaton is an instructional designer at Brandeis University, a doctoral student at UMASS Boston, and a part-time instructor at North Shore Community College. He teaches courses on history, literature, popular culture and digital technology.
Please keep these at a minimum and simply place the page number from which you have quoted in parentheses at the end of the sentence. Example: (38) Make sure all quotes are essential.
Any images, video snippets, etc that you want to be accompanied with the review should be supplied by you and should meet the Fair Use standards exemptions (Note: Don’t assume that it is fair use–the criteria are not as clearcut as the 10% rule often offered throughout academia).
We may include relevant imagery as we deem necessary.
- Please be formal. Refer to subjects by their last name rather than assuming familiarity. (Example: Addams, not “Jane.”)
- Please proofread your work to make certain that modifiers are properly placed, that syntax is correct, that all words are properly spelled, and that sentences are clear.
- When possible, use direct language. Avoid overly complex sentences.
Editorial Consideration: NEPCA reserves the right to edit reviews for space and clarity. If changes are minor, we will send the review back to you for approval only if you ask that this be done in advance. In all cases of major revision, or where intent or content is in question, the review will be sent back to the reviewer for approval and/or clarification. Reviewers should respond to queries within 48 hours.