Often times in real-world applications we will have entities that are somehow related. Students take courses, customers buy products, and users comment on posts. In SQLAlchemy we can declare a relationship with a field initialized with the .relationship() method. In one-to-many relationships, the relationship field is used on the ‘one’ side of the relationship. In our use case we have the following one-to-many relationships:

  1. One book ———< many reviews for that book
  2. One reader ——–< many reviews from that reader

Hence, we add relationship fields to the Book and Reader models. In this exercise, we will show you how to add a relationship to the Book model, and you will do the same for the Reader model.

We declare a one-to-many relationship between Book and Review by creating the following field in the Book model:

reviews = db.relationship('Review', backref='book', lazy='dynamic')


  • the first argument denotes which model is to be on the ‘many’ side of the relationship: Review.
  • backref = 'book' establishes a book attribute in the related class (in our case, class Review) which will serve to refer back to the related Book object.
  • lazy = dynamic makes related objects load as SQLAlchemy’s query objects.

By adding relationship to Book we only handled one side in our one-to-many relationship. Specifically, we only covered the direction denoted by the red arrow in the schema below:


In the next exercise, we will add the Review model and its relationship with the Book model (the blue arrow).



To the Reader model add a relationship field called reviews. It should link to Review with back reference called reviewer, and should use the dynamic loading process.

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