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Reviews and Peer Commentary APA Citations

Although reviews of books, movies, video games, and other published entertainment are not primary sources, they can still help your research. As such, you’ll need to know how to cite reviews as part of writing your APA 7 format research paper. Learn how to cite a review, including a book review in APA.

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Where to Find Reviews

You can find reviews in many places, including:

Even your local small-town newspaper probably publishes reviews. You may even find reviews of reviews!

How to Format a Review Citation in APA

The proper APA 7 citation format when referencing a review is as follows:

Format for a Review Citation in APA

Reviewer, R. R. (Date). Title of review [Review of the media Title, by A. A. Author]. Title of complete work, xx, xxx-xxx.

  • Include the medium, such as book or movie, inside the brackets.
  • Include the name of the author(s) for books. Place this after the book’s title, using a comma.
  • Include the year of release for films and DVDs. Place this after the title, also using a comma.

How to Cite Untitled Reviews

When citing a review without its own title, follow these guidelines:

Format for a Review Citation in APA (No Title)

Reviewer, R. R. (Date). [Review of the media Title, by A. A. Author]. Title of complete work, xx, xxx-xxx.

  • Use the information inside the brackets as the title.
  • Keep the brackets.

Include the DOI or URL at the end of the citation, if you found the source online. Do not place a period after the URL.

How to Cite a Book Review in APA

When it comes to how to cite a book review in APA format, you follow the same basic format for any review. However, you might take a unique approach if your book review is from a library database or website.

APA book review citation

How to Cite a Book Review APA – Library Database

Sometimes a library database might not have a title for the review. Therefore, you can use this format when creating your citation.

Format for Book Review Citation from a Library Database in APA

Reviewer, A. A. (Year). [Review of the book Title of the book: Subtitle, by A. A. Author]. Journal Name, Volume (Issue), pp-pp.


How to Cite a Book Review APA –  Website

Citing a book review in APA found on a website might take a different approach. For these, you’ll add the URL.

Format for Book Review Citation from a Website in APA

Reviewer, A. A. (Year). Title of review. [Review of the book Title of the book: Subtitle, by A. A. Author]. Website, URL


Citation Examples

Review these examples for how to cite reviews in an APA style reference list.

Example Book Review in APA

Schatz, B. R. (2000, November 17). Learning by text or context? [Review of the book The social life of information, by J.S. Brown & P. Duguid]. Science, 290, 1304.

Example Video Review in APA

Axelman, A., & Shaprio, J. L. (2007). Does the solution warrant the problem? [Review of the DVD Brief therapy with adolescents, produced by the American Psychological Association, 2007]. PsycCRITIQUES, 52(51).

Example Review of Video Game – No Author

[Review of the video game Fortnite, produced by Epic Games, 2017]. (n.d.) https://apps.apple.com/us/app/fortnite/id1261357853

Peer Commentary

Student referencing Reviews and Peer Commentary for APA Citations

Peer commentaries are articles written by others in your field about your paper. Unlike a peer-reviewed paper, commentaries are written after publication in a scholarly journal. The purpose of these articles is to add to the discussion of the topic, rather than to critique or edit the paper.

Commentaries can be useful as sources for your research as additional citations are added, or perhaps, they can help you understand the original paper more clearly.


Sokolova, I. V. (n.d.). The power of gender biases [Peer commentary on the paper “Why women are more susceptible to depression: An explanation for gender differences” by C.M. Mulé].  http://www.personalityresearch.org/papers/mule.html#sokolova

Reviews Published in Magazines

Use this basic format to create reference list entries for reviews published in magazines.

Format for Review Published in a Magazine Citation in APA

Author Last Name, First Initial(s). (Year, Month Day if applicable). Title of review: Subtitle if needed [Review of the publication type Publication title, by author first initial(s) last name]. Title of publication, volume number (issue number), page number(s).


Example of Magazine Reviews

Sanders, J. (2019, June 3). From Jamaica, with heartache. [Review of the book Patsy, by N. Dennis-Benn]. Times, 193(21-22), 100.

Note: If you accessed the content online, include the DOI or URL in your citation entry.


Reviewing Your Review References

Even though reviews are not primary sources, they can be a fun way to add to your research sources. Follow your teacher’s instruction on using these sources in your school paper. If you are writing a short essay, you may want to focus on authoritative primary sources instead.

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FAQ Reviews and Peer Commentary APA Citations

How do you cite a book review?

To cite a book review, you need to have the author of the book review, the date of the review, title of the review if available, title of the book, author of the book, where the review was found, and page numbers. An example of a book review in APA looks like:
Reviewer, R. R. (Date). Review title [Review of the book Title of book, by A. A. Author]. Where review is found, xx, xxx-xxx.

How do I cite a review in APA format?

To cite a review in APA, you will need the author of the review, date of the review, and title of the review. You also need to provide information about the book, film, or magazine the review is reviewing. Therefore, you'll include in brackets what was reviewed, title, and author. To finish off the review citation, you'll add the title of the complete work.

How do you cite a book in APA 2020?

To cite a book in APA 2020, you follow the 7th edition of APA format for creating book citations. Therefore, you include the author, date, title, and publisher information. The title is in sentence case for all APA book citations. An example of an APA 2020 book citation looks like:
Austen, J. (1918). Pride and prejudice. Harper Press.

How do you cite a book in text APA Style?

To cite a book in-text in APA style, you need the author and date information. Therefore, a citation for the book "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen in-text in APA style looks like:
(Austen, 1918)

How do you cite 4 authors in APA in text?

To create a citation for four or more authors in APA style in-text, you use the et al. after the first author. Et al. stands for the Latin term "et alia," which means "and others." Therefore, when you create an in-text citation in APA like (Betts, J. et al.), you are saying Betts, J. and others.

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