This is not to say that both kinds of sentences can be used in both types of writing. However, the overall trend for essays is to emphasise the information, whereas for literature reviews the trend is to emphasise the authors.
Students really have to be careful in not retelling the story because that is not the purpose of the assignment. From what point of view is each work written?
You may disagree with their conclusions — and this is absolutely fine.
Can you tell them apart or do they all sound the same, especially in dialogue? Narratives tell stories about how events unfold for characters and usually try to make us feel a certain way.
Is the plot confusing? However, the point-by-point method can come off as a rhetorical ping-pong match. The difference lies in the stance a writer takes in composing an essay and the kind of thing that an essayist tries to do.