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Book Reviews

Richard McCuenDr. Richard H. McCuen
JAWRA Book Review Editor

Book reviews are published in JAWRA as they become available. They may be viewed from the Wiley-Blackwell Publishing JAWRA website. If you would like to submit an unsolicitied book review, it would be best to contact Dr. McCuen before preparing it, to make sure the book is not currently under review and the necessary information is included.

Book Reviewers Needed!

The Book Review Section is made possible because of the willingness of professionals to review books. We have a continual need for those interested in providing an occasional book review. If you would be willing to review a book for publication in the Book Review section of JAWRA, please contact the Book Review Editor, Dr Richard H. McCuen, at Reviewers for all specialties in water resources are needed.

Guidelines for Book Reviewers

Below are some topics and questions to consider as a review is prepared. They need not be followed in sequence, or all discussed, since we wish to avoid the appearance of a standardized format for book reviews.

  1. Basically, the reader wants to know if the book would be useful to him or her, and whether it is worthy of purchase, either for a private collection or for a library.
  2. An essential question is: what is its content? List and elaborate on the major areas of coverage. Do not just list the chapter titles of the table of contents, but provide meaty information about what is included between the covers.
  3. For whom is the book intended? Does the author reach his/her goal of providing a book appropriate for his/her stated audience? May the book be quite useful for other purposes?
  4. If the book is a new treatment of a subject, how does it compare with other books already on the market? If a new edition, how much change has been made, in percent of new material and new areas added?
  5. Is there evenness of coverage? What are the book's strong points? Weak points? Is it up-to-date? How is the index? Table of Contents?
  6. What concerns do you have about the book, if any? Content or appearance.
  7. For whom do you recommender the book - students (undergraduate or graduate); researchers; practicing professionals? Any or all?
  8. What is quality of the text? Letterpress or offset? Is it reasonably free of errors, substantive and typesetting?
  9. Would the reviewer buy the text? Keep it or sell it? If a reference book would the reviewer purchase it for his/her own library?

This list is far from complete. Feel free to utilize those parts that are appropriate for your particular review and add any area about which you would like to expand. If the material is controversial, say so and indicate how well all sides have been dealt with. Try to avoid emphasizing your own biases and prejudices.

Under no circumstances should books receive a superficial review. The publishers are providing each book, sometimes at considerable cost, and we have an obligation to provide a thoughtful, in-depth review. Book reviews should be at least 1½ pages, typewritten and double-spaced. Maximum length should be between 3 and 4 pages, double-spaced, unless the book is unusually detailed.

Returning Reviews

Each review must include the following: complete title, author(s), publisher (complete snail mail mailing address), ISBN number, date of publication, number of pages, and the sale price. Also include the reviewer's complete mailing address.

All book reviewers must sign a Copyright Transfer Agreement; reviews will not be published until the copyright form is fully executed and received.

Return review to:
Dr. Richard H. McCuen (
Department of Civil Engineering
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742-3021

Please return the cover sheet and Copyright Transfer Agreement along with the review. We also ask you to return a copy of the review in Microsoft Word™ to and Charlene Young at