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Callaloo seeks book reviews that are intelligent, insightful, and balanced. We seek reviews that critique a text by taking an author’s intent and scope into account whilst calling attention to and discussing the aspects of a book that don’t fully achieve those aims. We are no more interested in publishing glowing reviews of those whose persons and work we admire than we are in publishing caustic reviews that seek to damage an author more than enlighten an audience.
A good review should situate a work in its proper context, briefly explaining how it contributes to a field or inaugurates debate. However, it should ultimately ground its argument in the text being discussed. It should also briefly assess the book’s structure and/or style: is it well-written, engaging, laborious, etc.?
Please keep your language clear and jargon-free. We value clarity and style ahead of unnecessarily opaque academic language. Please keep in mind that the journal has a diverse international audience. Don’t assume that all readers will understand your references to other works and authors. Please use first and second names of authors discussed; put publication dates in brackets of texts mentioned and use end notes to give publication details for other works discussed. (Please keep notes to a minimum, however.)
Please liaise with the relevant book review editor on deadlines and the length of a review. As a guideline, reviews of single books are 1500 words and up to 2500 for two texts reviewed. (Longer reviews will not be accepted unless agreed with the book review editors.) Book review deadlines are usually two months but please note that the journal will request the return of the book if reviews are not received within two months and a half.
Please submit your review to our online manuscript management system, FastTrack (http://callaloo.expressacademic.org/login.php), as a Word attachment, along with a brief biographical summary in a separate file.


Callaloo follows MLA guidelines for Works Cited Lists and Parenthetical Documentation.


Author last, first name(s). Title of work. Place of publication: Publisher, Date of publication. Paper or Hardcover. Number of pages.
DeVeaux, Alexis. Warrior Poet: A Biography of Audre Lorde. New York: W.W. Norton, 2004. Paper. 512 pp.


Use the block quote format for quotations longer than four (4) lines.

In an authoritative introduction, Zimbabwean academic Anthony Chennells alerts us to the context of this displacement:


…the novel records an important moment in the politics of Zimbabwean nationalism…In the 1950s, as the population pressure on the southern reserves…became unsustainable, people were moved to places such as…the northern parts of Gokwe [the site of Chinodya’s memoir]. This movement of people coincided with the Land Husbandry Act through which the settler government attempted to regulate the number of people on the land by instituting strict agricultural management…Behind the Act was a more radical re-imagining of the place of blacks in Rhodesia. (Introduction vii)

The above text is from a review written by Jane Bryce published in Vol. 29, No. 2 of Callaloo.


—Review Author’s Name [italicized, justified right]
Jane Bryce


  1. First note.
  2. Second note.


(Arrange alphabetically by author last name)
Author last, first name(s). Title of work. Place of publication: Publisher, Date of publication. Second line indent.
Author last, first name(s). “Title of article.” Title of Journal Volume.Issue-if-needed (Year or Date of Publication): page numbers.


Refer to the following for questions about usage in Callaloo:
“African-American / African American”
As a noun: African American
As an adjective: African-American
“Black Diaspora / diaspora”
As a proper noun: Black Diaspora, African Diaspora
As a basic, general noun: diaspora
City State Names
(no abbreviations)
Austin, Texas
Baltimore, Maryland

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